I am reading Gretchen Rubin’s book, Happiness at Home, which follows her first book, The Happiness Project. I love the concept that she uses in both books – focusing for 1 month on a certain topic or theme in order to create a habit, or promote change in her life. Once Gretchen chooses a theme, she then creates steps or guidelines that will help her reach her goal.
I have decided to try this for the month of February. My theme for February is “Show More Love”.
February, (as commercial as Valentine’s Day has become) is a month where we typically go out of our way and make an extra effort to show more love to those around us. And as life is full and busy, I do appreciate a holiday that allows us to reflect on how we show our love to those that matter most.
I have come up with some guidelines of my own for the month.
*Kiss every day, morning and night.
I loved this idea when I read it in Happiness at Home. I have 4 children, ages ranging from 10 to 2. Our mornings are busy, our bedtime routines are crazy. And something that often slips is kisses. I rush them out the door to school in the mornings, and we always part with a “love you!” and “have a great day!”, but what is sometimes lacking is a physical sign of affection. Our night time routine is that where I lay in bed with my younger 2 boys until they fall asleep, and my older kids stay up and read. I am anxious to clean up dinner, do the dishes and settle down for some quiet time, and I don’t always make it back into their rooms to kiss them goodnight before they fall asleep. So I resolve for the month of February to stop, and kiss my kids every morning before school, and to kiss them goodnight, every night. Same for my husband. We always part with a prayer in the morning and often an “air kiss”, but I am going to make sure our lips physically touch before he goes to work, and that before he falls asleep at night, that I roll over and kiss him. I read somewhere that one kiss per day should be at least 15 seconds long. I think I have time for 15 seconds.
*Give more compliments.
As a mom to young children, I feel like I spend my days correcting behavior, reminding and nagging, doling out consequences and cleaning up messes. I try to be positive, and know that I am not a critical or overbearing mother, but I also know that I can give more compliments. The smiles my kids get when we give compliments warms my heart. And I know it helps encourage good behavior and boost their confidence. I am linking a great article that I read recently called 10 Compliments Your Kids Need to Hear. It’s short and sweet and worth your time.
*Flirt more with my husband.
Let’s be honest. Moms are tired, run down, and worn out. Dad’s often get the short end of the stick when it comes to mom’s time, attention and focus. And not only does my husband have a full time, busy day job, he also has a lot of church responsibilities that take up time and take him out of the home. So we try to spend quality time together when we have it. We are really good at going out on regular date nights. We try to do this almost weekly. We also try to go on walks one or two nights a week in the evenings. We talk a lot throughout the day. But do I flirt with him? Not as much as he’d like. Women – you know what your husbands like…. texts during the day to say you love him, are thinking of him, or can’t wait to see him. Or even get a little race-y in those text messages…. he will LOVE it! Show some skin, spank (or squeeze!) his butt, wink at him from across the room, and wear something different to bed. Leave notes or treats in his car or lunchbox, kiss him while you are waiting for the red light to change, play footsies under the table. I know our husbands will be surprised by these simple gestures, and it’s these little things that help keep that spice alive in our marriages.
Here are some other great ideas that I plan to incorporate into our month of love:
1. Heart Attack!
This idea has been floating around Pinterest, but when I tried to find the source, it didn’t send me anywhere, except for this picture. The cute idea is that starting February 1st, you put up a heart with something you love about your child on their bedroom door. Do this each day until February 14th. I did something similar for a Family Home Evening last year and my kids LOVED it. It kind of goes along with the compliments from up above – they need to hear how much you love and admire them. They will be so excited to see when a new heart has been added.
2. Lunch box notes.
Send fun valentines in their lunchboxes for the days/weeks leading up to Valentines. You can write them on a sticky note, or print cute ones from Pinterest (search for lunchbox notes). How fun to have a love note from mom when you open up your lunch!
3. Use a “special” plate.
For Thanksgiving, we took turns each night saying what we were grateful for that day. For February, we take turns with a special plate (it’s just a red plate I bought at the grocery store for $2.99). We take turns giving compliments to the person who has the special plate that night. We rotate through the family during the week before Valentine’s Day. I love hearing the things my kids come up with, and why they are grateful for and love each other.
4. Don’t forget grandparents!
Have your children write notes, make a video, sing a song, or send a homemade Valentine to Grandma and Grandpa, or any other special person in your lives. Everyone appreciates a little love note -so don’t hold back! Share the love!
I hope these ideas will help you Show More Love to those that matter most in your life!
Happy Valentine’s Month!
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