Inside: Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to center around romantic relationships. Celebrating your love for your kids is a wonderful way to spend the day. But when kids get older, it can be hard to know what to do. Here are some ideas on how to spend the holiday with your big kids or teen.
Valentine’s Day is a great way to focus on the love you have for your kids. When you’re focusing on the people in your life today who you love, it erases or dims the longing for a romantic relationship on the day. You already have love in your life. So why spend the day wishing for something else?
When my children were younger, it was easier to shower them with silly Valentine’s gifts and games. They were so readily entertained with any Valentine activity I threw at them. We would play minute-to-win-it games with candy, and I’d give them a scavenger hunt throughout the house to find their present, usually a candy chocolate heart or something simple.
As my kids have gotten older and slowly lost interest in some holiday games and activities, I knew I’d need a new strategy to make Valentine’s Day special for my big kids.
Ideas to Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Big Kids
Play poker with valentine candy
One of the best things about Valentine’s Day is that the candy is pretty cheap, and I can buy it at the Dollar Store. Buying plenty of Valentine’s candy makes it perfect for games.
When my kids were younger, we would use Valentine’s candy for minute-to-win-it games. But around the time my kids entered the teen years, they had graduated from those games, and instead, we would play poker with the candy.
Create a cheat sheet for everyone that lists all the possible poker hands in order from best to least. (Unless your family is already well-versed in poker.)
Buy a range of candy – jelly beans, candy hearts, chocolate hearts, Reese’s peanut butter cups in the shape of a heart, sixlets, and more.
Then split up all the candy and agree which type of candy is worth the least and could be used for the ante (such as jelly beans) and which is worth the most (for us, it was Reese’s hearts.)
Then let the games begin! You may need to make some rules, such as, if you eat all your candy while playing, there’s no getting more.
I love to give my kids coupons, and regardless of their age, they love receiving them. Whereas once I would have made coupons for “game night” or “go to the zoo,” it takes a little bit of thought when they’re older. However, you can use these coupons for ways to spend some extra time with your big kid. Ideas for coupons with the big kids:
- Get coffee together
- Free car wash
- Your choice of fast food for dinner
- Free tank of gas on me!
- Sonic drink
- Ice cream – your choice
- One round of golf on me
- Let’s go bowling
- Swimming – take a friend
Depending on your child’s age, a photoshoot can be a fun thing for them to do. And it doesn’t have to cost much money.
You could always go all-out and hire a photographer to take the pics around town.
Or an affordable option is to find a deal at a department store and have your child get dressed up. If she’s the only one at the photoshoot (meaning you aren’t getting family pics), having a photographer focusing just on her (or him) can make them feel special.
Even more affordable is to get some fun dress-up items at the dollar store, such as boas, heart sunglasses, red or pink ball cap, and make a photo booth at home. Just make sure you have an excellent background, maybe with ballons and a blanket or bed sheet you have to lay around the house.
There are a lot of apps that allow you to take photobooth-styled pictures and enhance the experience.
Chocolate Chip Heart Present
Almost everyone loves chocolate chip cookies, and making the cookie into a large heart is just one way to add a touch of love to their presents. A great recipe can be found here.
You’ll rarely go wrong with giving a teen a gift card. Maybe add in some candy hearts, and you’re good to go.