Valentine’s Day is one of my very favourite holidays, because it celebrates the purpose of life. No it’s not about the flowers and jewellery, it’s about the LOVE!
Parents (including me) often try to find ways to how they can find time to connect more with their children. Time gets away from us with work and keeping house and so many others things. This day is a perfect time to remember the LOVE. Because we’re celebrating love in all forms, it gives you the perfect opportunity to create more love in your family, not only between parent and child, but between siblings too.
Parents and children are often “together”, but not really together. How many of us have found ourselves talking with our children, nodding our heads, but not really hearing what they are saying because we are distracted by other things?
Here’s the very best Valentine present for your kids:
Being PRESENT is the present.
You have to let go of all of the things happening this afternoon, next week, this winter, five years from now. You have to let go of the past. Let go of everything from yesterday, from your work, and be fully THERE. I know… easier said than done but SO worth it.
I love these little tips I found from the amazing bloggers at AHA Parenting. They talked all about the GIFT TEST and gave a few ideas for unique Valentine’s gifts. If you must buy a gift, choose it using the GIFT test: does it create more Gratitude, Intimacy, Fondness and Trust? Here are some alternate GIFT ideas for your little ones:
- Be Original: Isn’t it more appealing to your little ones to spend time together creating? Why not make Valentines gifts or cards? This can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. I like the idea of crafting with my children with cutout paper hearts and kind words that tell why you really care. This also gives siblings a chance to share their appreciation for each other, a departure from the possible bickering that brothers and/or sisters can exhibit.
- A gift certificate for quality time: It could be shopping or a movie or whatever they like to do best, but give them a nicely decorated little card as proof that you’re making time just for them. Especially in families where there are siblings, one on one time is scarce. Make it known loud and clear that your child is important and you’re going out of your way to spend time with only them.
- Send Them a Love Letter: Give your kids the gift of acknowledgement in the form of a letter. Be as specific as you can; “I love the way you’re so kind and helpful” and “Your smile brightens my whole day.” are better than the normal “I love you” because you took the time to acknowledge WHO THEY ARE and WHAT THEY MEAN TO YOU. It doesn’t have to be poetry – any kind word you have to say will be cherished for years to come. It’s like looking at photographs from when you were small and wanting to re-live the childlike love you received.
- A commitment to quality time: Kids feel loved when we listen to them and give them an opportunity to talk through their daily challenges. Every single day, spend 15 minutes snuggling with each child before bed. Snuggle time is just that… talking about your day or just being together (without the Telly on). You’ll realize that the gift was really a gift to yourself and be amazed at how close you feel to your little ones. Some teenagers may not want to snuggle at first, but they will eventually curl up into foetal position and enjoy the quality time – believe me!!
Make this Valentine’s Day about true intimacy and love. If you’re anything like me, your children are your everything. Remind them of that. Take time to make a commitment to your children on Valentine’s Day and every day!
Give your time and attention and your kids will have the best Valentine’s Day ever.