When we first started homeschooling, we used holidays like Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day as opportunities to teach our kids some Christian history. We talked about St. Patrick the missionary, and about how St Valentine helped young people who were poor.
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As the kids have gotten older and life has gotten busier, we have a lot less emphasis on making everything a lesson. Instead, Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day have become a way to break up the gray monotony of winter in the Pacific Northwest.
We find that having bright decorations around in February and March helps all of us stay cheerful until the gorgeous spring flowers start to show up.
Celebrating Valentine’s Day
I have encouraged my kids to give make Valentine’s crafts for each other. Sometimes we have done a valentine exchange at our homeschool co-op too. It’s a great way to help kids think of others and learn to express kind thoughts to loved ones.
We also have several books and home decor items that come out for each holiday. The kids love having different books available at specific times of the year. Learning the calendar, and marking days and seasons are all things that the little ones need to learn anyway, so why not make it fun?
Our favorite Valentine’s Day Books
- The Day it Rained Hearts, by Felicia Bond
- Be my Valentine, Peter Rabbit
- Biscuit’s Valentine’s Day, by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
- The Story of Valentine’s Day by Nancy Skaermas
- Happy Valentine’s Day, Charlie Brown! by Charles Schulz
Gifts and Foods
The local dollar store is a great place to pick up inexpensive, fun items that make the day a little bit special. I usually get some candies or chocolate, and some small party favor items for each child.
Mini erasers, pencils, bottles of bubble solution, sidewalk chalk are all easy ideas that give the kids something novel.
I frequently make some kind of special food, either heart-shaped, or bright red or pink. My kids love having pink milk at breakfast!
@dinkumtribe Making pink pancakes was so fun and bright! @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe #christmaspancakesforkids #christmasbreakfast #valentinespancakes #valentinesday2023 #christmaspancakes #holidaybreakfastideas ♬ Storytelling – Adriel
Check out our complete list of Valentine’s breakfast ideas for kids, including recipes!
Sometimes we order the heart-shaped pepperoni pizza from Papa Murphy’s. The idea is to find some way to make the day a little bit special, without adding a lot of work for Mom.
What about Romance?
It’s funny to me that our society makes such a huge deal about Valentine’s Day! As though whatever we do the rest of the year doesn’t count!
@dinkumtribe This thought has been helpful to me- hope it encourages you too. @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe @dinkumtribe #holidaytiktok #holidaygrief #holidaysadness #holidaysadtimes #unexpectedholidays #whenlifehitsdifferent #whenlifeishard #christmasdisappointment #griefandlossjourney #christmascancelled ♬ original sound – DinkumTribe ADHD family travel
Real love shows itself day in and day out in the little gestures that communicate “I love you” to your loved ones. Valentine’s Day kind of seems like showing off if you’re not already showing love daily.
One thing my husband has started to do is to get flowers for our girls. He does that so he can give them an example of what appropriate attention from a gentleman looks like.
He brings me flowers regularly. All our children see that spouses who love each other think of each other all the time.
There are many other things which we both do for each other often, as well as on Valentine’s Day. It’s not about the specific day!
@dinkumtribe He inspires me every day. I parent better because of my husband. #dadswhocare #involvedparent #involveddad #parenthood_moments #parenthoodjourney ♬ Peter Pan Was Right – Anson Seabra
For my husband and I, we aim to celebrate our love everyday. We don’t make a big deal about Valentine’s Day because we try to have date nights once or twice a week, and special celebrations at other times.
We realized early on in our relationship that the actual calendar day doesn’t really matter, as long as you take the time to recognize important moments. Plus, all the restaurants and popular things to do on Valentine’s Day are nowhere near as busy any other day of the year!
Keep Valentine’s Day Simple
That’s our basic philosophy about Valentine’s Day celebrations. Our marriage hasn’t suffered from keeping it simple, and our kids can have fun with it, without feeling pressured.
What does your family do for Valentine’s Day? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!
© Copyright Jennifer D. Warren 2022. Updated: January 1, 2023.