Valentine’s Day Parent Prep


I don’t know who needs to hear this, but Valentine’s Day is less than a week away. I know, I know, it seems so unfair that the Valentine’s Day Parent Trap is right around the corner.

What is the Valentine’s Day Parent Trap? It is that crazy warp zone where on December 26th all the stores pull out all the Valentine’s Day decorations, candy and cardboard school Valentine’s and you think, “Oh my Gosh, Christmas was literally yesterday and they are already shoveling their commercialism down our throats.”

Then you quickly put February out of your mind. If you are like me, that means you probably don’t think about it again until February 13th, when your kid reminds you they need 16 personalized Valentine’s Day gifts, one for each classmate, and a handmade, super-special Valentine’s Day box to collect theirs all before tomorrow.

Or maybe your kids are too little to warn you, albeit late, and you show up to daycare to drop off and see that all the other friends’ moms remembered to bring a treat for your kid, but you are running late for a meeting (not speaking from experience here, asking for a friend).

Don’t fall into the Valentine’s Day Parent Trap. You still have time. Do yourself a favor and spend a little time today thinking about February 14th.

Here are some tips to get you through and even make Valentine’s Day extra fun for your kids:

  • Hit that Amazon shopping list now. Chances are that by now Walmart is going to be totally picked over for those cute, little punny cards. Don’t even bother. If you didn’t pick them up in December, just order them on Prime.
  • Set a recurring calendar reminder for next year for the last week of January to order those for your kids next year.
  • Make a super simple “Valentine’s Day Box.” Our house is usually running out of tissue right about now, so I just grab a tissue box or baby wipe carton and some red tissue paper and tape and wrap it up, presto-chango, Valentine’s Box.
  • Make a healthy breakfast egg sandwich.
heart shaped eggs in toast
  • Or a super simple cute “lovely” snack like heart fruit kabobs.
heart shaped strawberries and kiwi on skewers
  • Grab a heart-shaped metal cookie cutter and go to town on heart-shaped dinner ideas from pepperoni pizza to pancakes.
mini heart shaped pizza on a red heart shaped dish
  • Add a package of heart-shaped paper plates and pink napkins and you’ll be ready for a party.
  • Check your local restaurants for easy dinner date ideas. Our Chick Fil A’s, for example, do a themed “Valentine’s Day Date Night” with tableside service, flowers, tablecloths and other special touches.
  • Finally, if you want to go over the top, you can grab a few sheets of pink construction paper and some scissors and leave a little trail of hearts from their rooms to a little Valentine from you.
  • No matter what level of preparation you take this year to avoid the Valentine’s Day Parent Trap from over the top to extra hugs, your kids will know you’re thinking about them and that they really are their Number 1 Valentine.

    Good luck, parents. You’ve got this!

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    Rachel is a native Coloradoan, though originally from the Western Slope. She followed her husband Chris to his hometown of Colorado Springs after having met in engineering school at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CO. Together they have four beautiful children, Tommy (2011), Tazzy (2014), Zach (2015) and Zinny (2018). Having a young and active family keeps Rachel on her toes trying to find ways to keep the ship sailing while still meeting all the demands of motherhood. Though Rachel loves her most important role as Mommy most, she also works full time outside the home as a Water Resources Engineer for the Colorado Division of Water Resources. This role helps keep her life centered, bouncing from detailed and complex discussions relating to Colorado Water Law with her husband ( a mechanical engineer) to daycare and preschool drop off and pick up schedules, while being constantly interrupted by the equally complex musings of her 4 year.


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