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Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents | Renee Rhinehart | MomCave LIVE

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day when you are busy, tired, and broke from parenting littles?

This week, Jen and Renee Rhinehart from Party Host Helpers are tackling the question of how to celebrate Valentine’s Day when you’re a busy, tired parent. They’ll share their Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents with tips for connecting with your partner, even when you’re short on time and money. They’ll also discuss the importance of finding small ways to show love and appreciation throughout the day, and the importance of prioritizing your relationship, even when you’re juggling the demands of young children. So, grab a cup of coffee and join us as we chat about Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents.

Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents | Renee Rhinehart | MomCave LIVE

Jen: Welcome to MomCave LIVE, where we may have lost our minds, but we haven’t lost our sense of humor. We have a fun guest today from Party Host Helpers. We have Renee Rhinehart. Hi, Renee.

Renee Rhinehart: Good morning.

Jen: Good morning. I know it was a good morning. 

Renee Rhinehart: I feel like we did it. So this is it. We’re good. We got we did it. This is our accomplishment for the day.

Jen: We’re here. We went live. We haven’t done anything live yet. But we went live. There you go. There you go. And I still have kids at home. My kids haven’t gone back to school yet. Crazy. Crazy. Raise your hand if you still have kids at home. Give us a comment. Tell me what to do, help!

Renee Rhinehart: So how many days is that? Huh?

Jen:  I didn’t count the days if I counted the days, I would maybe go insane.

Renee Rhinehart: Definitely over two weeks, though.

Jen: It’s been over two weeks. I love them to death, but they need to go to school. You know, they need those teachers who like know how to keep them calm and in line and I’m not good at that. Honestly. So, we just finished the holidays. The holidays are now sort of officially behind us. Congratulations, everyone. Every mom who was making magic and did it all… did all the things. Did you have a good holiday, Renee?

Renee Rhinehart: I did. So I have a 15-month-old at home so…

Jen: I didn’t know you had littles that little! Congratulations.

Renee Rhinehart: Thank you. Yeah, so I’m a new mom, kind of sort of still learning the ropes. Yeah, this year was a lot about wrapping paper, and Oh, wow. People climbing stairs, saying “ho ho ho”

Jen: “Ho ho ho.” And did you have to protect your tree from getting climbed?

Renee Rhinehart: Shockingly, no.

Jen: I’m so jealous.

Renee Rhinehart: I know. Because literally when I was putting up I’m like, am I gonna have to put like, you know, whatever. They’re not a gate but a plastic. Oh, is this how it will be for the next two years?

Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday.

Jen: Yes. Someone’s gonna climb your tree. Good morning, Megan. Megan said good morning. Over on Facebook. I have a kid coming down the stairs. Classic MomCave LIVE. We’ll just carry on here. So um, so the holidays, the Christmas, Hanukkah, holiday, New Year’s, all that those holidays are behind us. But we have another one that is going to be here before you know it. And that is Valentine’s Day. Right?

Renee Rhinehart: I love Valentine’s Day. It’s my favorite. I have even before I met my husband, even when I was single. I just love it. Oh my gosh, the expectations. It’s just fun. I throw a girl’s Valentine’s Day party every year. I was about to put that invite up this morning. Good morning.

Jen: So you have a Galentine’s Day party?

Renee Rhinehart: I do.

Jen: Do you hear that? We should all have Galantine Day parties, so fun. It’s when you have a party with your friends, like your friends, for Valentine’s Day. Not your not your date. But your friends. Okay. So yeah, here I have a kiddo who? Who’s going to? No, you can’t listen to my headphones. Go upstairs. Yeah. Okay. So I have never met anybody before whose favorite holiday was Valentine’s Day, I must say, you are unique in that way.

Renee Rhinehart: I like red. I like pink. But I hate the winter. I live outside of Philadelphia. It’s cold. And I feel like if we can get through Valentine’s Day and celebrate it, that brings a little bit of joy in that month. And then the next month is when spring happens and Easter and all the spring stuff.

Jen: So yeah, I get it. I love it. Um, my birthday is also in February. And so I like look forward to Valentine’s Day and my birthday because otherwise, February is cold, and dark. And somebody, if not all of us, always has the flu. Like, February. Here you go, see starting out with a cough

Renee Rhinehart: To keep everyone healthy this year. So you can celebrate.

Jen: Right? So we thought we would talk about this because Valentine’s Day when you are when you’re dating or before you have kids and you’re newlywed. You’ve got time and energy to make Valentine’s Day like its own thing,  Yeah. Right.

And then, in my experience with little kids, it’s kind of like one of the last things you think about that. You know, you’re dealing you’re so much in the weeds, and you are Renee with a little little one that, you know, concentrating on each other and celebrating each other as the people who made the little people kind of just totally falls by the wayside. So we need to come up with Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents.

Renee Rhinehart: Yeah.

Jen: Can anybody relate to that? Let me know in the comments, and let us know if you have any solutions for that. Okay. (to kid on her lap) Are you going to be here the whole time? Yeah, that’s the plan. That’s the plan. Well, we can’t talk about that. Spicy stuff if she’s here, so she’ll lose interest soon. Okay. Okay, so Renee, start us off, like, what is your top way that couples can connect when they still have little ones at home they’re concentrating on?

Why date nights are so important.

Renee Rhinehart: I think date nights are so important. And I know it’s not realistic for everyone to have a great babysitter to rely on. But we, you know, I have not been married that long. I just celebrated my three-year wedding anniversary. We’re a little bit older; I’m 41, and my husband’s 42. So we obviously met a little bit later in life. And, you know, I focus on my career running two businesses.

And I feel like when you get married later and have a family later, you kind of miss the fun stuff you did. So for us, we aren’t as scared as some of my friends who are new parents in their 20s to trust a babysitter so we can get out and enjoy a little fun time. So the last two years, I was just found out I was pregnant two years ago in February, and then last year, we go with it, we went with another couple down to Cape May, which is a beach town, for an overnight.

That might not be realistic for everyone. But even if you get out for like two or three hours and go to a local restaurant, go to a BYO, grab a bottle of wine. I think getting out without the kids is so monumental. And I’m sure you agree, yeah, it’s like

Jen: I love it that you and I are gonna have totally different perspectives because I have older kids. I have a 12-year-old and a seven-year-old. And I’ve been married for I don’t know how long. I don’t know, oh, I think it’s gonna be 20 years this year. 

Renee Rhinehart: Oh, congratulations. You need an anniversary trip.

When You’re Low on Money

Jen: We totally do. So we’ve been married for a long time. And so when we, and when we had little babies, we literally had no money for a babysitter, right? So it was always about, like, asking friends, and I had some lovely friends who would help, you know, come play with my kid or when there were grandparents that were nearby having grandparents help, but finding ways to just like, do things that cost no money or, or have a date night at home was what we had to do a lot. And now it’s almost like now, you know, we’re a little older, more established in our careers. And we have enough money, at least, for a babysitter. But we’re also we’re like, so exhausted. 

Renee Rhinehart: It’s exhausting sometimes, too. So, I mean, even just putting the kids to bed. And you know, these are just a few ideas that I have. Get a couple of bottles of wine, and do your own little wine tasting, there are a million things online that you can take time. Even if it’s, I’m sure that there’s YouTube or someone that you can find that is doing this for Valentine’s Day virtually, especially since Covid. There are so many virtual activities like this now.

Virtual Valentine’s Day Ideas

Jen: Like a virtual wine tasting, I bet that exists.

Renee Rhinehart : Yeah. And they tell you in advance what you want, what they want you to try and taste, and they go through it with you. You can do that with chocolate, or you can do your own, do some research, one of you know, put it up, put it on your husband, and to figure this out. Yeah, I think that’s a fun idea. I think just like even grabbing pizza, and then a nice bottle of wine or make a fun pink cocktail, or mocktail… whatever you like to drink.

More Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents…

Just making it a little bit special helps. Right? I’m a big fan of gifts in our house. And we don’t spend a lot of money, but I think it really impresses me when, you know, it was our leather anniversary, and my husband got me probably wasn’t real leather. I mean, it was Kate Spade, but it was a little Kate Spade purse. That was a heart, and I loved it. My mother-in-law helped him with the idea. But still, he thought he thought about the leather. You know, for the anniversary. So I think something beyond chocolate and candy, especially when we’re all trying to be healthier this time of year too, so something small.

Jen: Yeah, it can be the smallest little thing. When we were much younger, my husband had this coat that he loved and it had a button that fell off. And it was driving him crazy. It was like he would constantly complain that this button fell off. And I’d be like, I’m too busy. Just deal like, you know, deal with, why is this my problem? Right? And so for months, it became like this inside joke of he’d be like, my button fell off, and I’d be like, too bad. I’m not that kind of wife because I’m not.

Renee Rhinehart: Take it to the dry cleaner, right?

Jen: Then it became this whole thing, and then on Valentine’s Day, I had no money, but I went to the dollar store and I bought like a bag I got like 200 buttons and laid them on the bed. And when he came home from work, there were just all these buttons. And it was, it was hilarious. Like, I don’t know, I thought it was funny. He thought it was funny. And then I actually did sew the button on because that’s what he wanted all along. And just like little things, like a little thing that’s bothering right, you create a memory, so it doesn’t have to be a big deal. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money. Just some little thing.

How to make Valentine’s Day special when you have kids

Renee Rhinehart: A thought I had on Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents is that I’ve seen some local places near me doing in-house cooking classes but I don’t think my husband will be super interested in that.

But I think for couples who can’t leave the house because they have kids or they don’t want to trek into the city, the chef will come to your house and help, well teach you how to prepare. You enjoy it together, which I think is interesting.

Jen: I think even if he doesn’t like to cook, he would like just eating or watching. Exactly. Right. Exactly.

Renee Rhinehart: And I mean, I’m not a huge baker. I do bake, but it’s not my thing I even just make a special treat.

Jen: Something you know is their favorite? Exactly. That’s a good idea, too.

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Back to Brainstorming Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents…

Jen: You can also go places that don’t cost a lot of money or don’t take a lot of planning. So if it’s like, be a tourist in your own city, you know if there’s something you would never do normally. But everybody comes to your area to do it then you know, you go out and see that place and might have a little tourists kind of thing.

Hi, people who are joining in. Tell us what, are some of your ideas of how to still make Valentine’s Day Special. If you’re exhausted or broke? Or if you don’t have a sitter? Let us know some of your ideas, or ask us some questions if you have any. Renee, tell us about your company. What are Party Host Helpers?

What is Party Host Helpers?

Renee Rhinehart: So Party Host Helpers is a nationwide party staffing company. So it, we have 20,000 people in our system that are hospitality professionals anything. You can hire anything from a bartender to a general to a coat check attendant to a registration helper for corporate. So if you’re throwing a Valentine’s Day party or a Galentine’s Day party, you can get a bartender there I started it thinking it would just be residential, and now we are just residential. I thought it would be just residential in the Philadelphia area. And now we’re in 30 cities, and we serve as caterers with universities. Yeah, so it’s wild. You know, for My Galentine’s Day party, I will make sure that I have a party helper or a bartender, of course.

Jen: Nice.

Renee Rhinehart: I served Kir Royales. They were a big hit last year. Oh, wow. Okay, so easy. It’s just champagne and the splash chambord. And then, you know, I’ll make sure that I have a general helper to help with the food out to clean up to serve. So it makes the host job so much easier.

Jen: Totally. It’s great to have help when you can. I’ve never done a Galentines Day party. Has anybody watching done a Galentine’s Day party? And I know people have started this tradition with their group of like their core group of friends, and they do this every year.

Renee Rhinehart: Didn’t start with what’s that show? Parks and Rec?

Jen: I’ve forgotten that.

Renee Rhinehart: I always have done friends. You know, friends thing. One year we did a wine tasting locally. One year we threw a big party with our guy friends too.

Jen: Yeah, it doesn’t have to be Galentine’s day, you know? How about Palatine’s Day, be guys and girls! Now she’s at the age where like everything’s about, no boys allowed, girls only. Yeah. Yeah, I like that!

Renee Rhinehart: You need a Galentine’s Day party, then yeah, you can craft you, can serve, totally.

What to do when you don’t have a babysitter?

Jen: Right. Yeah. If you have, you know, another idea, if you’re going for like a Galentine’s Day, a lot of friends that also have small kids will, you can just make it a huge playdate where the kids will go off and play, and then you guys can have some time together.

Let’s see. We have a comment from Carly. She says on Valentine’s Day when my older two kids were little, we were stuck in a snowstorm while dad was out plowing with no money and stuck. I came up with a scavenger hunt with little toys they forgot about or McDonald’s toys never opened. My five kids today hold me to this tradition today that I started 12 years ago. But it’s a great tradition, Carly.

Jen’s kid: Could you do that?

Jen: Thanks a lot, Carly. I guess I have to do that. No, no, I’m just kidding. That’s a great idea. Scavenger Hunt. And you can do that for your kids. Or you can do that for your partner. If you know after the kids are in bed, you could create a scavenger hunt. It could even become kind of a naughty scavenger hunt. Yeah. Okay. Um, so what about when you don’t have a babysitter at all and you’re staying home? Let’s think about some let’s brainstorm some Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents here. Oh, those games with kids that we’re talking about? Mommy, daddy time. No.

Loving Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents for Kids and Husbands

Renee Rhinehart: I like words of affirmation. And for the kids and husbands. I think they like that, too. depends on the age of the kid, obviously. But you know, putting a little love note on a red heart and putting it on their door every day leading up to Valentine’s Day or putting notes in the kid’s lunch boxes, or Dad’s lunch box. That’s fine.

You can just be bored and fall asleep. You could just be bored and fall asleep. Yeah.

Jen: Grownups are boring sometimes. That’s what happens to us. Because when we have kids and jobs and all these responsibilities, we forget to be fun anymore. But we totally should be fun. Like why did we become partners in the first place and have the kids? Because we have fun together. So it’s like bringing back the fun.

Renee Rhinehart: And I mean, you’ve been married 20 years. So do you remember what you did to celebrate your first Valentine’s Day together? I mean, it’s kind of fun to recreate.

Jen: I don’t remember that, but I do remember our first anniversary when again, we had zero money. My husband his gift to me was that he made a really nice dinner, and he like researched how to make some of my favorite things, and he made the dinner but the special part that I remember because I still have this is he went to the stationery store next to us and he got this like parchment looking paper like fancy you know what menus would be made on and he he he like meticulously wrote out the menu in the script and made it look very fancy and made the menu and said you know, Happy first anniversary. I love you. And I still have the menu, so the menu was like the sweetest part of it.

Special Meals as Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents

Renee Rhinehart: And that takes time to learn to make certain foods if you’re not a foodie, if you’re not in the kitchen often, that’s just a lot of effort.

Jen: Yeah, I’m not sure

Renee Rhinehart:  You should remake the meal. Just bring it back to the menu.

Jen: You know, I bet that whatever it was I can’t remember exactly is not my favorite anymore. Do you see, you know like how things change? Your tastes change. I’m now you’re making me inspired to go look at it just because I’m curious. Like, what was my favorite thing? 20 years ago.

Renee Rhinehart: Now, it has probably been more. It’s more sophisticated.

Jen: Yeah. Probably for sure. Okay, so do you have a plan already for this Valentine’s Day?

Renee Rhinehart: So I am going to do the Galentine’s Day party for sure. I don’t think we’re doing our overnight getaway because we are heading to Barbados in January without the baby; good for you, so if we you know, I think it’s a weekend to the 14th?

Jen: I haven’t even looked.

Renee Rhinehart: Oh no. It says Yeah. No 13th is a Sunday; Valentine’s Day is Monday. We’ll probably get a babysitter and go out to dinner locally. I will try to make it a little bit more fun for my daughter. She’s 15 months, so I already have about seven Valentine’s Day outfits lined up for her. 

Jen: Right, it’s all about the outfits.

photo of cookie with "love" spelled out in icing, valentine's day ideas for parents

Renee Rhinehart: Oh I will use cookie and heart cookie cutters to make waffles and other little treats that she will not appreciate or remember, but I will.

Jen: No, but you’ll feel good about it.

Renee Rhinehart: Anything red? We like anything red and pink that week. So awesome. I don’t know what we’ll do that Monday night. I might task my husband with this.

Jen: I would love to hear how that goes. And if dad’s things turn out the same way as mom’s things would, because that sounds interesting. Can you let everybody know where they can find you on all the social media places?

Renee Rhinehart: We are all over. So on Instagram, we are Party Hosts Helpers on Facebook, where party host helpers. Party host helpers.com is our website if you want to get a free quote for a party helper. I know it’s not exactly party season right now. But with spring and summer approaching, we should all be planning our calendars, right? If you have any graduations or dinner parties, or exciting things to celebrate, we are your go-to. Yeah, I’m on Events by renee.net is my original event planning company that I still have. So yeah, you can pop up there and see some of my wedding and event work.

Jen: Great. Thanks for all the great Valentine’s Day ideas for busy parents, everybody. I am Jen from Momcave. You can find us on all places at Momcave TV, and the most exciting thing is now you should go wherever you stream. So Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and search for Momcave. And we have Momcave apps on these streaming platforms where you can watch Momcave on your big TV screen. So check that out. Thanks for watching, Renee, and thanks for talking to us.

Renee Rhinehart: Thank you, Jen!

Jen: I hope everybody’s Valentine’s Day is everything they want it to be, even if it’s pizza and beer and hanging on the sofa.

Listen to this episode about Valentine’s Day Ideas for Busy Parents as a podcast here:

Valentine's Day Ideas for Busy Parents with Renee Rhinehart on MomCave LIVE photo of Renee, blonde woman smiling
Jen

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