Just in time for Valentine’s Day, here are 8 tips you can use, one each day leading up to the big day, for demonstrating love to your children.
Using a family meeting, have everyone create a craft project that represents love to them. Provide a wide selection of construction paper and craft supplies and allow your children to create whatever comes to mind. Put the creations on display for everyone to see and enjoy, and photograph them to look at for many years to come.
Compose a poem about your child or describing how much you love her. Print it off on special preprinted paper with a border that can be purchased at office supply stores. Frame it and hang it on your child’s bedroom wall. You could even include the child’s picture or her foot or handprints if you had them done earlier. Sign it and read it to her nightly
Have a movie night with your kids, complete with big pillows to snuggle up with and a big bowl of popcorn. The one difference in making this night special is that the movie being featured will be the home movies you have of your children!
Help your child plan a V-Day party with all of her friends. For one activity at the party, provide a personalized mailbox (or bag) for each child. On blank slips of paper, have each child write down words that describe what they like about each of the other kids, one child per slip of paper. They will deposit them in each others’ mailboxes.
Every Sunday night, schedule a date with each of your children for the week to come. Put it on your calendar and tell your child so they will have something to look forward to. Scheduling in these dates ahead of time ensures they will happen. Then everything else that is less important can fill in around them. Why not schedule a date with your significant other as well?
Take a picture of you and your child, frame it, and then give it to your child to put in his or her room on the dresser or night table. If you have more than one child, create one for each of them. For an older child, put a picture of the two of you in a locket that the child can wear. This will also help calm a child who feels anxious when being away from the parent.
Find a child’s illustrated book that sends a message of love and commit to reading it to your children every night, leading up to Valentine’s Day. My favorite is the book LOVE YOU FOREVER by Robert Munsch and illustrated by Sheila McGraw. It sends the message that I’ll always love you unconditionally, no matter how you behave and well into your adult years.
Toddlers to teens love to be surprised. Hide a small valentine, an encouraging note, or a small valentine chocolate somewhere for them to find each day leading up to Valentine’s Day. Get creative and mix it up. You could also leave a note each day in one place that contains clues to helping them find what you’ve hidden.