Lifestyle,  Motherhood

A Twist on a Popular Valentine’s Tradition

I’m switching gears momentarily to share a sweet Valentine idea. This is not an attempt to step foot into the Influencer world (bravo, to those who are), as that is not my personal lane. In fact, topics like this will be a rare sighting on my Blog. But this one is too good to keep quiet, in a fill my bucket, most meaningful family tradition kind of way.

Mama’s, if you have spent anytime on the internet, I’m sure you’ve seen the Valentine’s countdown for your kiddos (again, thank you Influencers). 

The way it works: Starting February 1st leading up the the 14th, put up a paper heart up every day on your kid’s door with a reason why you love them. 

Simple. Cliche. Stereotypical. 

Everything I am not. 🙂

So, enter in my own twist. 

First, make a list of family members. This is essential if you have a big family- don’t forget anyone! Email the group the 3rd week of January (preparation, my friends!) and ask THEM to write back something they love about each one of your kids. 

I’ve found it’s best to not put any restrictions on what you ask them to share. Let their thoughts about each child be just as unique as the way they choose to share it- what makes them proud, something they love to do together, what puts a smile on their face, what makes them laugh, what their hopes and wishes are for each child. Perhaps even a special memory or a joke to remember. I do tell them that an individual thought for each child is appreciated, but a blanket message for all of them can be just as cozy and great.

I pre-cut all my hearts so that as the emails come in, I can then write them down promptly without getting a paper cut fourteen different times. And better yet, the messages don’t get lost and I’m not scrambling any particular morning to write out the hearts before I’ve had my coffee. Have your stack ready to go by Jan 31, so that you can enjoy the hearts just as much as the kids will.

Next, pick your door. The Pinterest Mom will tell you to go to the kids’ bedrooms doors. I’m going to suggest you pick a common door in your home. One you share as a family because after all, this is a family effort at heart. 😉 And also, you aren’t running around your hallway from bedroom to bedroom, tiny humans pushing and fighting their way to see and hear each heart. We usually fill the French doors to our playroom but have also used our big sliding glass doors in the dining room, both of which the viewing area is plentiful.

Now, it’s time for the big reveals and the whole reason why I’ve chosen to do it this way. Every morning before the kids wake up, I tape up the new hearts. The kids can’t wait for their heart to be read out loud, making them each feel like the brightest shining star in the room. But even more so, they can’t wait to hear WHO it is from. The message warms their heart, but it’s the person that gives them their big smiling grins. 

My kids hearing the messages come from those who love them, beyond just their parents, I think is just so much more special and I can see my kids feel it too. 

Don’t forget this why as you try this project with your own. The rest of my words here are just minor details. My blog cannot even come close to replicating the meaningful words on your Valentine’s hearts- that’s truly where the magic is.

I also encourage you to keep these pro tips in mind, from a Mama that’s been doing this four years and running:

*Your hearts don’t have to be perfect. In fact, I’ve even just used full sheets of huge pieces of paper, writing the messages in “list form”. Guess what? My laziness that year had zero impact on how special my kids still felt every morning when we read their messages. 

*If you are short on space or just want to mix it up from year to year, change up how you write your hearts. I’ve always done small hearts- 4 hearts (1 for each kid) every day for 14 days… that’s a LOT of hearts (56 for those of you doing the math). This year I made 1 bigger heart per day, writing all 4 kids on said heart.

*It doesn’t have to be just family. Ask your friends, neighbors, babysitters, your kids’ best friends. The last two years I’ve asked their teachers to participate and that day has been, hands down, the highlight of the countdowns. 

*Of course, we as parents, still want to share our love too. Josh and I always take a day! If I’m short on messages from our special guests, we will take multiple days. Remember, there are no rules to this!

*Don’t over complicate it. Don’t stress out. Just have fun. This is one of our favorite Holiday traditions we do. Anyone I ask to write us a message, also says how much they love being a part of it. So, enjoy!

Before you run to your craft cabinet to start cutting out all your Valentine’s Day hearts (and back tracking for the 3 mornings you already missed in February… sorry! Late to the party! See, no rules here) ;), I will say one last thing:

Don’t put this tradition in a box from what you see on social media, or even from what I just told you to do. Traditions like this are special because YOU make them special. Do what works for you and your family.

Whatever you do, know that each morning you read the hearts to your kid(s), it’s also the perfect time squeeze in those extra hugs and I love you’s from Mom… 

56 times. 💙💗💜💛

Until Next Time❤️

I ALWAYS forget to take photos once our countdowns are done every year, but this will at least give you an idea of what ours typically looks like…