By Sheila Anderson
Often the fondest childhood memories stem from family traditions that were lovingly repeated throughout the years. Family traditions have family at the center of a celebration spending time together and creating lasting memories. If you don’t already have a family Valentine’s Day tradition, why not start one this year? It could be the beginning of many wonderful years of Valentine’s Day memories with your family.
A Valentine family tradition doesn’t have to be expensive. The main idea is to spend time with the family together. Here are some inexpensive ways you can start a Valentine’s Day family tradition in your family.
Make a Food Treat Together
Most people associate chocolates with Valentine’s Day, but how about making a different treat together that your family can share together. One fun treat you can make are Rice Krispies hearts. All you need is the basic Rice Krispies squares recipe, heart shaped cookie cutters and red sprinkles. Lightly grease the insides of the heart shaped cookie cutters and press some Rice Krispies squares mix into the cookie cutters. Then remove the cookies cutters and add the sprinkles. Repeat as needed with the rest of the mixture. It’s simple enough for young kids to help out.
Another simple idea is to bake a cake in a heart shaped cake mold. Make some red (or at least pink) icing and then the kids can decorate the top with sprinkles and heart shaped candies.
Play a Family Game
Games are a great way for families to interact with each other and have fun at the same time. Choose a favorite family game and have an enjoyable time together. Make sure that it is a game everyone enjoys so nobody feels frustrated or left out. It’s also fun to learn a new game together so the whole family is at the same level of expertise.
A card game that has hearts as the central theme is a good match for creating a Valentine’s Day family game time tradition. Capture the Hearts is a simple card game that the whole family can easily understand and play. The object of the game is to win as many hearts as possible. The only card knowledge required is to know the order of the cards.
Each player starts with 7 cards and plays 2 cards face down in front of them each round. The top card cannot be a heart. After each player has selected their cards then everyone turns over the top card. The player with the highest card wins all the remaining face down cards, hopefully containing some hearts. In each subsequent round, deal 2 more cards and continue play. The player with the most hearts in the end wins the game.
Watch a Family Favorite Movie
The movie doesn’t have to be mushy and sentimental, as long as it is a movie that the whole family enjoys. It doesn’t even need to be a movie you’ve seen if it’s a movie that the whole family wants to see. Pop some popcorn, or eat some of the treats you’ve made for Valentine’s Day, and enjoy some time together.
Exchange Homemade Cards
Instead of shopping for cards try making cards at home. You’ll save money and have nice keepsakes. The cards can be as simple as folding a piece of paper and cutting out a heart with one straight edge of the heart along the fold. Write a customized message for each member of the family on a separate heart card for each. Encourage the other members of the family to do the same and you’ll have a nice time exchanging special heartfelt cards.
Holidays are very special to children and Valentine’s Day can be made even more memorable if you create your own family tradition. Your children may even use these traditions when they are grown with their own families.
Sheila Anderson creates free printables for kids to provide fun and educational paper based activities. These free printable activity pages and worksheets can be found at PrintActivities.com.