5 tips for planning holiday fun.

5 tips for celebrating the holiday fun (specifically valentines)

I am no expert so please take this with a grain of salt. You have to do what works for your family and the one thing I have learned over my short life, is that what works for one person, does not work for everyone. Either way though, I feel like I should share what helps me plan my holidays and keep traditions going, specifically valentines day. To do this, I have created the top 5 tips for celebrating valentines day successfully each year.

1. WRITE DOWN each valentine tradition that you want to continue each year. This will not only help you stay organized but also help you not forgot what needs to get done each year. Most of us just wing it each year putting together what we have time that year for but with a small list for each holiday on what you would like to do, it can help keep those traditions going. Specifically for Valentines Day, my family and I always get Chinese take out each year and we rent a movie for the kids and one for us after they go to bed. We also stuff a pair of new valentine socks with treats for the kids when they wake up. It is a way to include everyone for this holiday. We also dip chocolate strawberries. Now you see, their is no way I would remember all of this if I did not have it written down.

2. Look up yearly events to add to your itinerary. About a month before valentines day, start looking any events being held that could be fun. Look up events at public libraries, and on your city service site. You can also just type in "valentines day fun in (place where you live). This is something you can do for all holidays too. After you have a list of ideas, decide which ones you will attend and put them in your schedule.

3. Decide on your menu. Deciding early is key. Often if you wait too long, you will not get what you want done plus if you plan early, you can do a few leading up to the holiday to get kids, and family excited. I decided this year to try chocolate ice cube tray strawberries and I am looking into decorating heart cookies. Also, I have a special breakfast planned the morning of valentines day. The truth again is, If I didn't plan ahead of time (like a month ahead), it wouldn't happen. If you need some inspiration, I suggest pinterest.

4. Include one easy family craft for each holiday. We chose to make spray on tissue paper window hearts this year and it was so fun and such a success. The key to choosing a great craft is to make it simple, good for all many age groups (if you have more than one child), and open for interpretation. Children like to create and they don't follow step by step instructions very well so you have to choose an activity or craft that can be interpreted, changed, and created in each child's own way.

5. Think about specifically what your family can reasonably make happen and what you can afford. We all love pinterest these days and its so fun to look at everybody's creations and life and try to copy that. The truth is, you can't create and copy everything and make it fun for your family just because it was fun for another's. you know your kids, your husband, your busy life better than anybody else and so you have to decide accordingly to what you can handle and what you can afford. Budgeting, and planning ahead of time helps. You don't have to do 20 crafts, and make a whole feast of food for each holiday, maybe you just do 1 thing total each year for each holiday and no food. What works for you is fine, just think about what you can handle and what your family would like.