This month we are focusing on LOVE, not just romantic love, but family love and how much we love to be a family. We will be talking about family, marriage, and temples for family home evenings because
There is nothing in this world as important as the creation and perfection of family units (Elder Bruce R. McConkie, Improvement Era, June 1970).
The whole aim and purpose of the gospel is to enable men and women—united as one in the Lord—to create for themselves eternal family units in eternity. Celestial marriage prepares us for the greatest joy and happiness known to mortals and for eternal life in the realms ahead” (Elder Bruce R. McConkie, Ensign, Nov. 1979).
“Happiness in marriage and parenthood can exceed a thousand times any other happiness” (Elder James E. Faust, Ensign, Nov. 1977)
For our first family home evening, we started off talking about the Plan of Salvation. We lived with Heavenly Father before we were born. We are His children. We loved Him with all our hearts and wanted to become like Him so he created this Earth so we could become like Him. Even though we can’t remember living with Him, He didn’t leave us alone. We have prophets, the scriptures, prayer, the Holy Ghost, and FAMILIES to help us. Wouldn’t it be sad if we came down all by ourself and had to figure things out without a mom or dad? Heavenly Father promised that if we kept His commandments and covenants, that we could become like Him AND live together forever as families. Because dad and I were married in the temple (hold up a picture of the temple), we can be together as a family.
We drew a picture of our family and discussed what the roles of each person were. Then we went to the table and wrote down things we loved about each family member on hearts. Then we HEART ATTACKED the kitchen. This was a great way to build family unity and remind ourselves of why we love to be a family.
EGBERT VALENTINE TRADITIONS
- Heart attack the kitchen
- Go to the temple as a family and take some pictures (after our family home evening lesson on why temples are so important)
- Have a WE LOVE TO BE A FAMILY DAY
- Write a special note to each person in your family telling them the top 10 things you love about him/her and give it to each person on Valentine’s Day
- Love Jar
- Love Letters to Your Spouse
I got most of these ideas from the Power of Moms website: Seven Family Activities to Fill February with Love. The family fun day idea is from April Perry: A Valentin’s Tradition Your Family Will Never Forget. I will briefly describe what we plan to do as a family for each of these activities
WE LOVE TO BE A FAMILY DAY
8-9 Special Breakfast
9-9:30 Morning Routine (scriptures, morning chore, clean house)
9:30-10 Look at Family Photo Album from 2012
11-12 Games & Valentine Day Hunt (hunt for Hershey Kisses)
1-2:30 Play Games with Caleb while Daniel naps
2:30-5:00 Children History Museum
6:00 Scriptures and MOVIE with popcorn
We put 22 activities in a jar that are love, service, and spiritually oriented (this is to increase our love for our family, friends, neighbors, and our Heavenly Father). The plan was to do one a day (we aren’t going to do one on Mondays or the family fun day or temple trip day). Some of these activities are to show the kids how much Heavenly Father loves them – it is to show them that the Lord gives us Valentines (Love Notes) all the time.
JAR ACTIVITIES for 2012
1. “heart attack” someone’s front door
2. do a “secret service” for someone in your family
3. Read a story about loving and caring for others
4. pop some popcorn and watch a fun movie that has a love story
5. make a special Valentine for a school or church teacher
6. Make a Valentine for Grandparents
7. Make Valentines for friends in the ward (kids in primary class)
8. Valentine Hunt (invite a friend)
9. Pick out two toys at All A Dollar for a Friend and Deliver them
10. Have the boys help make dinner and deliver it to a family in the ward
11. Act out a story from the Scriptures (Daniel in the Lions Den)
12. Watch a Living Scriptures Video
13. Watch a Mormon Ad Video on service or kindness or love
14. Watch a Bible Video from lds.org
15. Do an activity from the Friend Magazine
16. I LOVE…
Pass around a heart and have everyone talk about the people or things that they love (or activities they love to do). Give compliments to each other
17. Read The Grump (story from The Friend magazine, February 2013)
18. Read You Are Special and give out stars to Caleb and Daniel
19. READ What Really Matters by Charlotte Wood Wilson (from the Friend magazine, February 2013)
20. Do the story of the creation (place pictures on hearts) to show the kids how much the Lord loves them – look at all He did for them!
21. Use a picture of the world and put the pictures of all the wonderful things Heavenly Father has given us (temples, prophets, scriptures, etc) to show how much Heavenly Father loves us (maybe go outside and collect things Heavenly Father has made for us)
22. Make Crayon Hearts (invite a friend)
You will need: Waxed paper, Crayons, Scissors, Pencil sharpener, Iron, Hole punch, String or ribbon, Paper towel
What to do:
1. On a piece of waxed paper, draw a large heart.
2. Use the pencil sharpener to make crayon shavings, and sprinkle them on the heart you drew. Your finished heart will be whatever colors you include. Put another sheet of waxed paper on top.
3. Put a paper towel on top of the waxed paper to protect your iron. Have an adult help you iron the two layers of waxed paper together.
4. Once the wax paper has cooled, cut out the heart you outlined earlier. Punch a hole near the top and thread a string or ribbon through it for hanging.
5. Repeat this process to make more hearts. Surprise someone you love by hanging these hearts where they will find them!
LOVE LETTERS TO YOUR SPOUSE
This idea is from The Red Headed Hostess blog: 12 Days of Love Notes. She made it up around Christmas time, but Jared and I never got around to it so we are doing it this month instead to strengthen our marriage. For 12 days you take one of the following topics, write about it, and then give it to your spouse.
On the _____ day of February, my true love said to me…
1. Favorite memory of us from 2012
2. One of my best qualities
3. A future goal together
4. I love you because…
5. A favorite funny memory
6. How you have made me a better person
7. Why I am proud of you
8. If I could give you anything it would be
9. I am grateful for you because…
10. This is what I tell others about you…
11. Something you do that makes me laugh
12. Little things you do that I appreciate