Let’s be honest, some of us are natural romantics and the rest of us are, well, hopeless. Finding the right way to show your partner you care can be more stressful than finding the right birthday gift. Why? Because Valentine’s Day requires us to be a little more creative (thanks Hallmark). We worked with lifestyle expert, Colleen Mullaney, to come up with a 10-step cheat sheet for romance. Read and get inspired.
1. Let your partner sleep in. That added beauty rest goes a long way and can really rejuvenate an exhausted new parent.
2. Start off in a romantic mood by placing a valentine under your partner’s pillow. Build on it by putting them in a coat pocket, briefcase, etc. Continue the trend through the day by texting or e-mailing, have fun with modern love!
3. Heart shaped cookie cutters make the first meal of the day a memorable one, from pancakes or waffles with mixed berries, to an egg-white omelet.
4. Hand your heart out on a limb, literally, by making a hearts tree. Crafted by printing out photos or poems, cutting them into heart shapes and hanging them with pretty ribbons on branches that have been sprayed white. A simple vase filled with red pebbles makes a perfect base.
5. Set a heart inspired tablescape: paper stores carry pre-cut heart shapes in a variety of sizes, perfect for place mats and drinks coasters. Sprinkle the table with confetti or small candies, and finish it off with candles and flowers. No need to shell out a lot of cash for a dozen long stemmed roses — try a few bunches of red tulips cut short and arranged in small glass cubes for a fresh look.
6. If Valentine’s Day falls on a Saturday, give each other a few hours of private time, time to go to the gym, or get a massage, or even to have a cup of coffee, breaks for the stressful hectic life with baby are essential to keep your relationship on track.
7. Cook dinner together; plan a simple but special meal that the two of you can work together on. Keep the lighting low and play romantic tunes.
8. Take five minutes to change out of those sweats and put on a nice top, powder your nose, and a splash of perfume and fancy slippers.
9. Begin your meal with a cocktail. Champagne with a bit of raspberry puree and a splash of limoncello makes a celebratory cocktail with a dash of cupid’s coloring. End the meal with heart shaped brownies or mini cakes with berries and cream. It doesn’t have to be from scratch to be delicious!
10. With baby asleep, watch a romantic movie or play a game with a love theme for a change of pace.