It’s Valentine’s Week! Are you setting a more romantic ambience around your home? If you have little people, romance can sometimes (OK, oftentimes!) be a challenge. While our own kids-in-diapers-days are long over at our house, we are entering into the teen years with our son and my husband and I are both really busy throughout the week, so trust me when I say that no matter what stage of life you are in, creating romance has to be a priority! It’s all about the mindset and setting the right ambience.
Here are ten tips for a more romantic ambience at home:
Set a pretty table
Are you eating dinner on plastic or otherwise ugly plates? Or, heaven forbid, eating in front of the TV every night? Bring out the pretty dishes and set the table this week! No need for fancy china, I collect lots of white plates from discount stores like HomeGoods and TJ Maxx. Make your table romantic with pretty table settings and a couple of candles — it is a simple thing to do but it sets the tone for a romantic evening.
Bring home flowers
Stop in a grocery store or florist for some affordable carnations or tulips or other pretty flowers and create a few small bouquets in the bedroom and bathroom. I find affordable flowers at Costco and Trader Joes!
Tidy up the bedroom & bathroom
If the laundry piled up on the bed during the day, or the kids flung their pull-ups or undies across the floor, or if your cereal bowl is still on the bathroom counter, take just a few moments to freshen things up. Seeing unsightly reminders of your long day will kill the romantic ambience pretty quickly.
End the day earlier
If you tend to be tired in the evenings, do as your grandparents probably did and try having “supper” instead of dinner. Meaning, eat earlier if you can! The earlier you can eat and clean up, the more time you have in the evening to enjoy relaxation. And adjust the kids bedtime if you can pull that off! It is nice to have a couple of child-free hours in the evenings.
Another tip my husband and I used to use when our kids were young was to feed the kids separately once in awhile. Then we’d put them to bed and have our own dinner together, just like having a dinner date at home!
Freshen up the scent
If your house smells like leftover fish tacos after dinner, air things out! Spray some perfume here and there or use a diffuser for essential oils (here is where I got my diffuser and my oils come from here) to freshen up the house. Or bake something yummy for dessert!
Turn on the mood lighting
As the daylight starts to fade, turn down the bright lights in the house, too. Use lamps instead of overhead lighting. Once the kids have gone to bed, light candles to lend a pretty glow to end tables.
Light a fire
If you have a fireplace, use it! We have a gas fireplace so it is easy to flip on a switch for instant warmth and ambience. If building a fire is impractical or you have a nonworking fireplace or no fireplace at all, set up a bunch of candles to give off light and sparkle. This tip works best if your little ones are already in bed, as a safety precaution!
Are you turning into an old married couple with a predictable evening routine? Gulp. If you usually clean up after dinner, put the kids to bed and then watch TV the rest of the night, try mixing up the routine by playing a board game next to the fireplace or reading out loud to each other curled up on the couch. Or, re-read your love letters or re-live your memories of your early dating days. At first you might think it sounds corny or forced, or you might think your old routine is pretty comfortable, but routines can get a little dull! And dull is not very romantic.
Music to your ears
Instead of flipping on the TV every evening to fill the silence, try some more romantic background music instead.
By the end of the day, I am usually really tired. I work hard right up until the end of the day. Not only do I need to end my day earlier, but I need to shift my thinking from work and housekeeping to setting a romantic tone — both around the house and in my attitude.
What’s one thing you could do this week to create a more romantic home?
Pillow Sources (from back to front)
3. Made from an Antique Grain Sack
4. West Elm