Celebrating Valentine's Day as the parents of young children can often mean passing on a romantic dinner out or even a quiet evening at home. Do you have a newborn, or even a toddler or older children, and you have no babysitter and no idea how to celebrate Valentine's Day? As well, it goes without saying that you're soexhausted that a date night seems out of reach. Coming up with date night ideas can be overwhelming for parents, but that doesn't mean you need to forget celebrating at all. Lucky for you, there are lots of ways to celebrate at home as a family and create a truly special night for everyone.

A homemade romantic meal is easy to manage if you keep it simple. Your partner or you can handle baby duty while the other cooks. Once the meal is ready, pack your little one into bed, sit down, eat, talk (NOT about the baby) and relax. Valentines is a great way to bake some love heart style food! Buy a love heart stencil and shape your food for your partner (Cheesy we know but adds a little special touch).

As noted above, cooking a homemade meal is great, but if that’s too much hassle, order in! While homemade meals are less expensive and often tastier, the time you save with take out is well worth the price for most parents. Sit back with your take-away and enjoy a movie on Netflix together cuddled on the sofa.

It sounds more romantic to have some one-on-one time with your partner, but honestly, some of the best dates can include other people, especially when new mums are craving some adult company. It’s easy to invite friends over for some wine or beer plus a fun board game or some karaoke. Or just sit around and chat. It’s surprising how refreshed you’ll feel after spending some time with other adults vs. just your newborn and partner. If you do have friends over, keep the following in mind…

  • Work with your baby’s schedule. If baby always needs attention at 7 pm –  plan to have people over at 8.
  • Fight the urge to only have friends over if your house is perfectly clean – as new parents, this won’t ever happen. Trust me, no one cares about your house, your friends miss you and just want to spend time with you.
  • Have some drinks and food on hand, but keep it easy such as snacks or order a pizza. If you must cook, try something super simple like pasta. Consider asking your friends to bring the food since you’re hosting.
  • Be close – Cuddle together as a family. If your kids are young, have a tickle-fest! Valentine’s is all about love at the end of the day!
  • And last of all - HAVE FUN!

If you have any great ideas or activities you think are great to do with the kids on Valentine’s Day, please feel free and share your thoughts below in the comment section!

Happy Valentine's!