A family Valentine’s tradition doesn’t need to be expensive or complicated to be meaningful. I created this fun and simple 14 Days of Love family Valentine’s tradition to make it easy to show your spouse and kids how much you love them during the month of Valentine’s Day.
How can I make Valentine’s Special for my family?
It feels like we just finished celebrating Christmas, but there are simple ways to make Valentine’s special for your kids without spending a lot of money. This family Valentine’s Tradition involves you purposely showing love in a specific (sometimes unconventional) way each day in the fourteen days leading up to Valentine’s Day. The first year I did this with my kids and husband, I didn’t tell them what I was doing…I waited until our special Valentine’s Day Dinner and asked if they noticed anything (they did!).
You can do this fun and simple family Valentine’s tradition the same way, or tell your kids each day what the theme is, or even have them guess at the end of the day what your special “Gift of Love” was for them. There is no wrong way to do this fun tradition!
Start by downloading this free printable pdf Valentine’s planner page, then read on to find out the simple ways you can show love to your family this February!
If you are looking for another Valentine’s Tradition, check out my post with 15 simple Valentine’s gifts for kids from parents that could be used as a 14-days-of Valentine’s Countdown! (including free printable tags!)
Gift of Love Day 1: Play a game
When is the last time you sat down and played a game with your kids? On this first day in February, make a special plan to play a game. If, like me, you have kids with a wide age range you might get to play a few different games to make everyone happy for this family Valentine’s tradition. If board games aren’t your family’s thing, you could play Hide and Seek, or go to a park and play tag. My kids absolutely love it when mom (and dad!) play a game with them. You can go all out and do a whole game night, or just a simple game of Candy Land, but leave the dishes in the sink and shower your kids with some love a!
When the kids go to bed spend some one-on-one time playing a game with your spouse. Board game? Card game? Super Mario Bros? Take a break from the grind and play, you will both enjoy it!
Gift of Love Day 2: Praise praise praise
Today’s Gift of Love is another simple thing that can often get lost in the day-to-day shuffle of life. Today your goal is to praise your children (and spouse) as much as possible. “Wow, you put your dishes in the sink, I love how much you help me!” “Look how nicely you shared with your baby sister, I love that you love her!” “Thanks for texting me during your lunch break, it’s nice to know you are thinking about me! “I appreciate how you get right to your homework when you get home from school, that is an awesome thing!” Try to make MORE words that come out of your mouth praise instead of criticism today and feel the love in your house.
Gift of Love Day 3: Favorite food
On February 3, you are going to make it your mission to get at least one of EVERYONE’s favorite foods on the menu. Maybe that means having a crazy Favorite Food dinner where you have a smorgasbord of foods! Or maybe you just do one favorite thing each meal…at breakfast make pancakes your daughter loves, at lunch make nuggets that are your son’s favorite, at dinner tacos that everyone loves. Another option would be to make each person their special favorite lunch (my kids absolutely love Lunchables, they would pick those for their favorite lunch!) If your spouse is at work, you could order a special delivery of their favorite food! Or you could even just make a special dessert that you know the whole family enjoys.
Gift of Love Day 4: Special Secret Service
Today you are going to do a special secret act of service for each person in your family. As a mom we do LOTS of service every day, but on this day you are going to do something that isn’t a normal everyday service. For me, I will be washing my oldest son’s bedding and making his bed up perfect…he loves that! For my daughter I’m going to pick up her floor and vacuum. For my little boys I’m going to put away the books and toys in their bedroom so they can play easier. For my husband I’m going to get all the laundry in our bedroom put away (am I the only one whose Master bedroom is the laundry dumping ground?!) and clean off his bedside table.
Try to be sneaky and do the service without them seeing you (easier with kids at school!). They will feel especially loved that someone did something special just for them!
Gift of Love Day 5: Physical Touch
Like Day 2, today you are going to add to your normal loving and make it an extra huggy/kissy day. Some days I go to bed feeling like I didn’t hug and kiss all my littles as much as I should (especially my big littles!). Even a touch on the shoulder shows love! Try to get in some extra hugs and kisses and cuddles (if they’ll let you). This is a great day for moms too, everyone feels better when they are getting hugs! I know there are days when I feel a little “touched out” and my husband is the unfortunate recipient of less touching. Make a special effort with your spouse too. Maybe a massage after the kids are in bed?
Gift of Love Day 6: Make something together
Today, February 6, you are going to make something with your kids. There are so many options but the requirement is that you have to do it TOGETHER! It would be good to make sure you have all of the things you need for your making day ahead of time so your fun isn’t derailed!
Some fun options:
Gift of Love Day 7: Make them laugh
This will be a funny memory for your kids in this new family Valentine’s tradition…do you ever do something that just strikes your kids as funny? Every once in a while a song will come on and I will go full out in an awesome dance/singing routine. My kids think it is the most hilarious thing ever. Today your goal is to make your kids laugh. Maybe it is a crazy dance party where you are the star. Maybe you find some funny knock knock jokes. Maybe you buy a pack of stick-on mustaches and show up to pick them up from school mustached with a silly hat on. Whatever you think will make those little people giggle is what you need to do! If you have teens, find a funny meme or 10 and text it to them.
Gift of Love Day 8: Listen
This might be a day that no one can actually NAME what you did for the Gift of Love, but they will feel it. On February 8 your mission is to listen. Put down the phone, stop doing the dishes, stop folding the laundry and listen to every word that comes out of those precious little mouths. Listen, respond, tell stories that go along with what they are telling you. The goal is to make them feel like they are the most important person in the world…because to you, they are!
Gift of Love Day 9: Add Some Beauty to their space
Beauty has a way of making you feel both peace and love. Today try to bring a bit of beauty especially for each member of your family. Maybe a small bouquet of flowers, or a cozy family room with a fireplace blazing when they get home from school. Perhaps you have some pictures you’ve been meaning to frame or hang up. How can you add beauty for each person in your home?
Gift of Love Day 10: Surprise
February 10 is one of my favorite days in this Family Valentine Tradition. Today you will figure out a special surprise for all of your family members. Some ideas include:
- Go to school and eat lunch with your kids. Either buy a hot lunch with them or maybe even bring a pizza or Happy Meal for them
- Switch out the lunch they chose and make a special fun lunch for them
- Go somewhere fun immediately after school, pick them up and head to a park or an indoor play place if it is too cold!
- Get a movie party set up including popcorn, special treats and drinks and a movie from Redbox. Have the room all set up to surprise them when they get home
- Set up a family sleepover while the kids are at school. Have sleeping bags and pillows ready and tell the kids the plan when they walk in the door
Again, this doesn’t need to be expensive or elaborate. A surprise trip to the park will be just as fun as another money spending suprise.
Gift of Love Day 11: Say Yes
Your gift of love today might sound funny but is very liberating. Today say YES as much as possible to your kids. This might mean that some “important things” don’t get accomplished, but your kids are going to love it. “Mom, come play with us!” “Can you make us a fort?” “Mommy, can I have ice cream for lunch?” Yes, yes, YES! What a fun (and possibly crazy) day! Especially if your kids figure out what today’s gift of love is early on. 🙂
Gift of Love Day 12: Watch a show THEY want to watch
I have many fond memories of watching TV shows with my family…shows like “They Cosby Show” and “The Carol Burnett Show” were favorites that we gathered together to watch. The nature of media today makes this occurrence less likely. Nowadays we have iPads and shows that we can watch on-demand when we want to! Today make a special effort to watch a show OF YOUR CHILD’S CHOICE. This might mean suffering through a cartoon that you’d rather not watch but WATCH it and laugh at it and talk about the characters in it with your kids. They will love sharing something special with you and, honestly, cartoons can be pretty darn fun these days!
For the spouse part of this, pick out a show or movie that you might not necessarily enjoy but you know they like. It’s worth it to have a couple hours with your sweetheart’s arm around you, right?
Gift of Love Day 13: Do a Chore for them
Your gift of love on February 13 is to pick one of your kids’ chores and do it for them without them knowing. This will work best if your kids have chores, but if they don’t….you could clean up an area they use so they can use it better. It will make your child feel good to start to do a chore and realize that it has already been checked off their list!
Gift of Love Day 14: Write a note
The last day of 14 Gift of Love days! One of my favorite traditions that we started with my kids many years ago is having a big fancy Valentine’s dinner at home together. Our food of choice is always Chinese takeout and we eat it by candlelight! To add one last big gesture of love to each of your kids, I challenge you to write them each a special note that details out all of the things that you love about them. Be very specific…I love the way you laugh when your brother does something funny, I love your little boy smell when you cuddle into me in the morning, I love how your eyes light up when you see your baby sister, I love how you help get your brothers cereal when no one else is awake. Another option would be to make a paper placemat with either drawings to represent what you love about your kids, or little hearts with writing saying what you love.
Don’t forget your spouse, this is a GREAT gift of love for your husband or wife!
A Simple and Meaningful Family Valentine’s Tradition: 14 Days of Valentines: Gift Of Love Review
I started this family Valentine’s Tradition a few years ago and it is still something my kids, husband and I love. I love the simplicity…nothing too hard to prep, and I love how it makes us all feel. It is a good lesson for our kids of the importance of trying to do something to show we love each other EVERY day. Yay for love!! Yay for family!!
So are you onboard? Print off your Gift of Love worksheet and get all the details planned out and join me on Instagram for daily reminders of what comes next. I would love to see what you’ve been up to…just tag your Instagram Pictures #GiftyGirl #GiftofLove
The world DOES need love, for everyone! Join me in giving A gift of Love for 14 days!