With Valentine’s Day around the corner, the Sustainable Living Bloggers and I decided to put together some alternative activities and gifts. Rather than spend a lot of money on cards, roses, and Valentine’s candy, we thought it would be nice to offer some healthy and sustainable Valentine alternatives. From experiences to thoughtfully planned, there are so many ways to show someone love without candy, cards, or flowers.
Focus on Each Other
One of the very best things that you can do to show those around you that you love them is to focus on them. Tell them how much you respect them or how much they mean to you. Spend the time to do something heart-felt instead of spending money on them.
Take time to remember those you have to love from a distance. One great way to do this is to chat with them online. We live in such a unique and blessed world that the internet is an awesome resource to engage with those we love “face-to-face”. Kids’ Play Space shares how her family uses the internet to keep in touch with loved ones which is a great read for those with lots of family afar.
You can also make your own card online (for free) to send to those you love where distance separates you. Find a tutorial here to make photo cards, or thoughtful simple text greeting cards that are sure to show your friends and family that you love them!
Spend time with your toddlers, kids, and spouse to write an old-fashioned love note. I love this idea from Nothing if Not Intentional about writing out the things we love about our children. It not only is encouragement and love for them at that time, but it’s a keepsake to remember each year what about your child you cherish the most.
Don’t forget each other as parents. Find time to have a one-on-one date night even if it means staying in. You can still get dressed up and have a fancy meal, but the focus is on celebrating the love you have between yourselves and share as parents. Read about how Dayna at Lemon Lime Adventures celebrates love and disconnects from the rest of the world to focus on her marriage.
Healthier Valentine Alternatives
Valentine’s Day many time is about the candy. However, there are so many other ways to celebrate than to feed ourselves junk food and refined sugar. In fact, spending some quality time in the kitchen is a great way to connect with each other and create some delicious healthy (or healthier) treats!
Make some homemade cookies. Recipes that are 5 ingredients or less are usually much better for us; therefore, find some great recipes like these 5 ingredient homemade sugar cookies or these 3 ingredient peanut butter cookies.
Wake up the morning of Valentine’s Day and enjoy “Breakfast with heart”. Make everything shaped like hearts. Place bacon in a heart shape, use cookie cutters for making biscuits, and large cookie cutters for heart-shaped eggs. Find my fluffy biscuit recipe and heart-shaped breakfast here.
Valentine Craft & Play Alternatives: Using Sustainable Materials
Instead of buying play-doh or small plastic toys, consider spending time crafting together and making things out of recycled goods. The list could go on and on with ideas of what you can do to upcycled your “used” goods, but here are a few Valentine-focused crafts to inspire you to use up your trash in a meaningful way!
- Lemon Lime Adventures creatively put together a recycled Modge Podge collage, make their own construction paper , and even put together an upcycled mobile for decorations.
- Work on Fine Motor Skills and Stitch up a cardboard heart card like this one from Hugo and Mathilda.
- Artsy Momma has a great idea to use some old baby jars to make upcycled candle holders.
- Celebrate love and hugs like Peakle Pie with this hug craft made out of cardboard tubes or this great ribbon heart craft.
- Make your own Rose-Scented Play-Doh like Danya Banya did for her daughter.
- Think of loving the animals and create a great bird feeder out of cardboard and seed like this one by the Slow Family.
Who are the Sustainable Living Bloggers? Find a directory here.
Kara is an author, wife, and mother of 3 children living in Boston, MA. She has her degree in Secondary Education & Adolescent Childhood Development and is passionate about connecting with and even helping other parents on their journey to raise awesome kids!