Simple ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day with your family

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You might think Valentine’s Day is a romantic celebration only for couples but there is so much more to this occasion than just chocolates, roses and going out for an overpriced dinner.

Did you know that the origins of Valentine’s Day can be traced back to as many as three different St Valentines, all of whom were romantic figures? Others think Valentine’s Day was created in part to subvert a pagan fertility festival around the same date.

By the Middle Ages, Valentine greetings had become a custom – and it remains one of the most popular ways to celebrate the day, with approximately 150 million cards exchanged every year!

So why not spread the love this Valentine’s Day – it’s the perfect opportunity to not only show your partner that you love them, but also a great way to create more love within the rest of your family as well. Here are five fun ideas that won’t break the bank without a boring greeting card in sight:

1. Go for a nature walk
Turn off your smart phones (or at least put them on silent) and reconnect with your loved ones over a quiet stroll or cycle. Even Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is no stranger to showing affection by taking his family on a tranquil walk along MacRitchie Reservoir on Valentine’s Day.

2. Fly a kite at Marina Barrage
It’s an open expanse of land with a terrific, constant breeze – perfect for launching your kite. With the cityscape and sea as backdrops, you’re guaranteed to get some beautiful shots to remember the day. Wrap it up with a trip to the water park at Gardens by the Bay, a casual satay dinner or both!

3. Take in a concert
The Singapore Botanic Gardens holds an annual series of free concerts at the Bandstand – this year, they run from Friday, 10 February to Sunday, 12 February. The live music starts at 7pm, so pack a picnic basket, head there early to “chope” a good spot and enjoy the swinging selection of popular tunes! Don’t forget your bug spray and lots and lots of water.

4. Make art together
It can be as simple as getting some canvases and paints, and throwing a home painting party. But if you prefer the no muss, no fuss nature of an art class, many studios run special events in February. Check out Artify Studio, which is holding a special Valentine’s Day class for parents and kids that will result in a beautiful 3D artwork that you can take home.

5. Cook dinner for each other
If food is one of your love languages, why not put some effort into creating a special meal for each other? In our family, we like to each take responsibility for a different dish. That way, we get to plan, shop, and cook together, while still being able to take pride in one’s own creation. It also works well for families with a wide age range – just divvy up the responsibilities in an age-appropriate way! Maybe your toddler can help pick flowers for the table, and grandma can teach your older kids how to make her favourite dessert… you get the idea.

No matter which way you decide to celebrate Valentine’s Day, don’t get caught up in the act and forget what the day is all about – showing your family just how much you care for them. And letting them love you back.

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