And no, I’m not just talking about hanky panky…
Aside from the hugs and silly conversations, another huge aspect that I miss about not having my family close by is not having babysitters to call on when needed; the mother-in-law lives in Johannesburg so that is also a teeny bit far for an evening off. I did have a very good babysitter but wonderfully (and totally inconsiderately) she is having a baby in a few weeks so we are now facing the realization that we will have to wait a good few years before we can have a day or evening to ourselves. Now I’m not saying that there aren’t other options, but with Rosie not sleeping through the night (and being quite an active kid) and the majority of our friends having kids of their own, finding someone who will come to our house and who can bounce and play with the little rascal is rather impossible.
So that’s one of the reasons we won’t be making a booking at some fancy restaurant and paying double for our food but just because we’re staying at home on Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to mean that it won’t be special. That’s why I’ve put together a few ideas that are dedicated to everyone out there who will also be spending the evening at home because you deserve a wonderful, loved-up day even if you are surrounded by children and babies.
1.The 5 senses
Something that’s both fun for adults and kids is to explore the 5 senses of the body in a fun and unique way. You can easily make changes to each sense but here are my suggestions:
What you’ll need:
Sound – Collect a bunch of animal noises or even the openings of popular songs and have everyone guess what they are.
Touch – See how long your little one and even your partner can last without laughing when you tickle them, starting from their feet and working up to their head. The winner is the one who doesn’t burst into giggles.
Sight – Get a packet of glow in the dark stars and let the artist in your kids emerge. Then, wait till it gets dark and see what images they have created.
Taste – Fill some bowls with your kid’s favorite treats and have them guess what they are eating whilst wearing a blindfold.
Smell – Either using essential oils or perhaps herbs from the garden, see if your family can identify the scent.
And for the adults..
Sound – Let your favorite love song set the mood
Touch – Lush make wonderful massage bars that are good for your body and kind to the environment
Sight – A new item of lingerie is sure to go easy on the eyes
Taste – How about some chocolate body paint?
Smell – Enhance the atmosphere with some scented candles
2. Cupid’s Eats
Have an entire feast that only includes red items. This will require some creativity because just dying your food red isn’t going to cut it. Think tomatoes, rare steak, beetroot, red velvet cake, babybels, chili, strawberries
and of course….red, red wine
3. Craft Beer hops test
Okay, so you can’t do this with kids, but it’s quite a fun activity for when they have gone to bed. Duvel have released a blind-tasting kit that consists of 6 beers that are each made with a different hop – it’s up to you to guess what has been used.
Available from the Biggest Little Beer Shop in Willowbridge – the Duvel Tripel Hop Tasting Box is selling for R349
If you’re not a fan of beer, you can always do this with wine…the possibilities are endless
4. Make your own chocolates.
Who wouldn’t want to spend the evening melting chocolate? It’s so simple to buy some bars of chocolate, melt them and then, using ice cube trays (the funky ones are the best), pour in your melted mixture to cool and shape and perhaps add some chopped nuts, salt flakes or even popping candy. The best bit about this whole activity is licking the bowl afterwards!
You could even add ice cream like in this recipe.
For adult chocolates, you can add your favorite liquor and have a merry old time later on.
5. Become your own mixologist
Keeping it virgin means that the kids can join in and get their creative game on. You could purchase a bunch of ingredients and let them go wild or you could structure it a bit and use any one of these “50 best Mocktail recipes“.
Obviously I don’t need to point out that there are a ridiculous amount of adult cocktails that you can make and drink when the kids are sleeping. For something that is romantically pink and pretty, try this rosemary, grapefruit and gin cocktail.