Create Sweet Memories: 10 Valentine Dates To Do As A Family

Valentine’s Day is traditionally a day of love: dinner, chocolate, champagne, romance – the works! While this may have been the case PRE-children, all parents know that once those little bundles of joy come into your life, those romantic Valentine dates come few and far between. Valentine’s Day is no exception. If finding a babysitter is proving to be nearly impossible on the love holiday, don’t think you still can’t have a special day with your partner! We’ve rounded up 10 great ways to make Valentine’s Day special for your spouse but with your kids too for a fun family holiday!

Daily Mom Parent Portal Valentine Dates

Why Do We Plan Valentine Dates?

Valentine’s Day is a special annual occasion where romantic couples, come together to celebrate the importance of love. Its believed to have originated in Ancient Rome, likely beginning with a pagan fertility celebration known as Lupercalia. The Roman people would gather in the streets and hit young women with goat skins in the hopes of increasing their fertility. (Date night with kids is starting to sound even better right now, eh?)

Over time, this celebration developed into a festival of romance devoted to the Roman goddess of love, Venus, and her husband, Mars, the god of war. Boys and girls would draw the name of their romantic partner from a bowl and spend the day together. In 496 AD, Pope Gelasius I declared February 14th St. Valentine’s Day, in honor of the martyred saint. Since then, the tradition of sending handwritten love notes and tokens of affection has over many, many years, continued to spread across the rest of the globe.

One of the main reasons why we plan Valentine dates every year is to show appreciation for those we love. Planning romantic Valentine dates helps to create new memories and create a special bond between couples. Typically this is done by going out for a special romantic dinner by candlelight, maybe a romantic chick-flick movie too, and overall making it a night to remember.

READ MORE: 20 Valentine’s Outfits, Toys, & Treats For Your Littlest Loves

Many today have deemed it a “Hallmark Holiday”, using it as an excuse for companies to market and make more money. Typically restaurants are packed, roses and candy are overpriced, and couples are expected to spend plenty of money on each other. Some romantics would say they’re being cynical because to many couples, planning Valentine dates are still a great opportunity to show appreciation and love for those around us and make it an unforgettable night.

Benefits of Celebrating With Kid-Friendly Valentine Dates

Even if they’re not cynical, not everyone is able to go out for a night on the town every Valentine’s Day. There are certainly some valid reasons why a couple might need to stay home on the “love holiday”. A couple may be struggling with financial difficulties and may not be able to afford to go out on a special night, or one of them may not be feeling well and so they may be unable to go out and partake in the festivities. In other cases, the couple may simply desire to stay home and spend some quality time together after a long, busy week.

Valentine Dates aren’t always the best choice, especially for couples with young children. Whether it’s children who have separation anxiety, newborns that aren’t ready to part with mom or just the problem of finding a reliable (and available) babysitter, it sometimes just is the better idea to stay home.

READ MORE: 35 Funny Valentine’s Day Jokes Bring Miles of Smiles For Your Little Ones

But not all is lost! Valentine’s Day is a great day for families with young kids to spend quality time together. Staying home can mean spending time playing board games, watching movies, making arts & crafts, or participating in fun, silly, or even educational activities together. Plus, it’s always a benefit to stay home to save money and opt for free or very, very, cheap activities like baking special treats, preparing a homemade dinner, and breakfast-in-bed. It’s an opportunity to bond, strengthen their relationships, and create long-lasting memories as a family.

And let’s not forget the benefits of NOT having to dress up to go out. Sometimes it’s nice to throw on some comfy sweats and cuddle up after a long day. Maybe going out on Valentine dates is overrated.

10 Family Valentine’s Date Ideas

As Valentine’s Day approaches, families with kids should also consider making this day special for their children. To celebrate Valentine’s Day with your kids, we have put together a list of 10 fun and engaging family date activities. From a special breakfast to a special evening with dessert, this list has romantic and entertaining Valentine dates for your family that will bring you closer together and create enjoyable memories that will last a lifetime. So don’t just focus on adult activities this Valentine’s Day, but make your kids feel special too!

Special Breakfast

1. Start off with a love breakfast for the whole family. Use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make love pancakes, waffles, or toast. Or just pick up a few pink and red sprinkle donuts at your favorite donut shop. Serve with some pink strawberry milk for added flair and add some heart-shaped fruit kabobs to round out the fun. Maybe all Valentine dates should start off this way? Now that’s love!

READ MORE: Valentine’s Day Clothing Kids Love

Valentine’s Day Crafts

2. Make some Valentine’s Day crafts together. There is no shortage of ideas out there for fun kid-friendly crafts for all ages. All kids love arts and crafts time and this a great activity for some family time. Have each person make one for each family member – even the dog! Check out our post 5 Ways to Make Valentine’s Day Special for Your Kids for some fun crafting ideas.

Confess Your Love

3. Write (or draw) some love notes for your family. Set out a pretty bowl, jar, or box and throughout the day, write love notes to the family and add them to it. Younger kids can draw their notes with some adult help. At dinner time later, take turns reading these notes. This activity not only reinforces family bonds, but it’s also a great way for younger ones to express how they feel for their parents and siblings.

READ MORE: Find the Perfect Valentine’s Card Messages in 5 Minutes or Less

Throw A Party

4. Throw a party. Know another couple or two with kids who decided to stay in? Invite them all over and have a small Valentine’s Day party! Serve up some cupcakes or heart-shaped treats and play a few Valentine’s themed games. Ask them to make special Valentine cards beforehand to hand out as well! Special bonus: the kids will play so much together, they should sleep really well at night *wink wink*! Everyone goes home happy!

Scavenger Hunt

5. Have a Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt!  Roses are red, violets are blue; It’s Valentine’s Day, can you find the clues? Set up a series of clues that lead from one treat to another and end the scavenger hunt with a special prize for the whole family! Kids love looking for clues and this has the added benefit of promoting some basic critical thinking skills and reading. Plus, when planned in advance, maybe it’ll give Mom and Dad a little needed cuddle time on the couch while the kids run through the house.

“Fancy” Dinner

6. Have a “fancy” dinner. Just because you are stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t still have a wonderful meal with your kids! Make something new and different, or get takeout from your favorite place. Just make sure to place the order early – restaurants will be busy! Set the table with a fancy tablecloth and eat by candlelight. Some romantic favorites? Anything Italian! Take it a step further with appetizers like calamari, or bite-size finger foods. As long as the entire family loves what’s on the menu, any of these Valentine dates will be succesful.

Fancy Mock-Tails

7. Serve some fancy mock-tails. Valentine dates are usually the perfect opportunity to try a new and interesting drink, so recreate that experience at home by whipping up a few of these mock-tails for the whole family! Check out this great round-up here of delicious-looking non-alcoholic drinks. Feel free to make some adult versions of them as well. We’re making them for our Valentine dates afterall!

The Love Potion #9 drink can go either way! Make sure you have a few ingredients on hand and whip one up for each family member.

  • Cherry Juice (or Pomegranate or Cranberry can substitute)
  • Maple Syrup
  • Limes
  • (Vodka for the Cocktail version)
  • Sparkling Water to top it off
  • Sugar for the rim
  • fresh raspberries

Place maple sugar on a small plate. Rub the rim of the glasses with a lime wedge (just enough to wet the rim) and then dip the rim of each glass in the maple sugar. You can use any granulated sugar or refined. Shae 5oz of cherry juice, 2 tbsp of maple syrup, juice of one lime, and vodka (if using) in a cocktail shaker.

Fill your Valentine dates glasses with ice, pour the cocktail over the ice, and top off with sparkling water. Place a few fresh raspberries in the glass and serve. It’s the perfect drink to serve adults and kids (without alcohol) alike. Want to get even fancier? Pour some cherry juice into a heart-shaped ice cube tray and freeze prior to mixing the drink. Add them on top and you’ll have a Pinterest-worthy drink that kids won’t stop talking about.

Special Dessert

8. End dinner with a special dessert. Don’t let “At-Home” Valentine dates prevent you from ending dinner with something sweet! Try a new recipe or make an old favorite and sit at the table together enjoying this special occasion together. Many kids and adults alike will enjoy an at-home fondue night! Use a crock pot to keep some chocolate melted and take turns dipping a variety of treats in it: marshmallows, bananas, strawberries, cookies, or pieces of pound cake. Is it messy? Yes. Is it delicious? Yes to that too! Don’t forget to read your love notes, but lick your fingers first!

READ MORE: 17 Valentine’s Ideas for Her That Won’t Break the Bank

Dance Party

9. Have an after-dinner dance party. Dinner and dancing? Why not!? Kids LOVE music, so pump up some favorite jams and get dancing! Add in a few slow jams so Mom and Dad can have some fun showing off their “romantic dancing” skills. Showing your children a little romance will just reinforce to them how much you love each other too. And that’s just as important as showing love for them.

Movie Night

10. Movie Night. After all the fun, end your Valentine dates with a nice family-friendly movie together. Cuddle on the couch with lots of blankets and pillows and watch a new kid-friendly release or an old romantic favorite like Lady and the Tramp. Serve up some Pink Popcorn for an added treat. Oh fun!

Staying in on Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to equal a boring night in! It’s the perfect day to make memories with the ones you love. Rather than missing out due to a lack of a babysitter, parents can still make the day memorable with their family. Start with these ideas to spark your imagination of ways to have that special date night feel with your kids. Romance doesn’t have to disappear once you are a parent, you just have to get a bit more creative! Show your kids how much you love them and how special your family is.

Photo Credits: Magic Memory Works Photography, MyDearValentine, The Whimsical Photographer, The Art of Making A Baby



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Daily Mom Parent Portal Valentine Dates



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Michelle; full time mama, part time blogger, wife extraordinaire. This busy mama to three “peas” is a lover of all things running, crafting and baking. A New England native and current desert dweller, she is the brains and wit behind the blog Our Three Peas, where she writes about the hilarious reality that is motherhood. She strives to live a green and natural life and swears that most motherhood-related dramas can be solved by having a nice glass of wine at the end of the evening.


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