I have a love-hate relationship with Valentine’s Day. It’s a hokey, over-commercialized holiday meant to sell flowers and candy. But it’s also about recognizing and appreciating the person (people!) you love. Sure, this is something you should be doing every day, but our days get busy, and many couples, especially those with young kids, can get into a rut. So, it’s also a great reminder to pull yourselves out of that rut and celebrate the amazing couple that started this incredible family. And by celebrate, I mean get out of the house, away from the laundry, dishes, and bedtime-stalling requests from upstairs.
Easier said than done though. We recently surveyed parents to find out how they “date” and found that nearly half of them say they only go on a few dates a year with each other. But, a whopping 96% of those parents said that a date night makes them feel closer and more connected to their partner. The math is simple and the solution easy: take your partner out for a date night this Valentine’s Day.
Here are 5 tips and strategies for a successful Valentine’s Day date night. And for the record, who doesn’t like flowers and chocolate?
Secure a Sitter Early
Valentine’s Day is one of the most popular date nights in the country, which means it’s also one of the most popular days for families to hire a babysitter. More than half of the parents we talked to admitted that finding reliable childcare was the worst part about planning a date night. If your regular sitter has date night plans of her own, make sure you know that early. Nothing kills the romance like scrambling to find last-minute child care. Instead of begging your parents to watch the kids (again), hire a sitter early. That will leave you time to focus on the more important parts of your V-Day celebration.
Show Your Little Ones Some Love
Yes, you’re going out at night, but Valentine’s Day lasts all day. Plan a special family breakfast or spend some extra time with the kids during the day. Then, when you head out the door, leave them with a fun new movie to watch or game to play with — and don’t forget the chocolate kiss!
Be a Planning Hero
The stress of planning Valentine’s Day can take the fun of the holiday. Surprise your partner by taking the reigns and planning everything. We recently launched an app called Date Night that allows you to book a sitter, make dinner reservations and buy movie tickets all at once. Be a Valentine’s Day hero and impress your partner by taking care of all of the details. Plus, if you book the table, the other person usually has to bring a gift!
Don’t just phone it in — get yourself in the mood for your big night out. Ask the sitter to come an hour or two early so you could spend time getting ready without your kids hanging from you. It’s amazing what taking some time to treat yourself to manicure or a long shower will do for your attitude.
Celebrate the Day After or The Day Before
Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest nights of the year for restaurants. If you and your valentine don’t want to be surrounded by other noisy couples on your evening of romance, consider making your plans for the day before or the day after. You can make the 14th about your family and another night for just the two of you – with more privacy — at the venue of your choice.