Maybe you are like me. You have the best intentions to get something in the mail but it sits in your purse and then all of a sudden it feels too late to send something.

Fear not! This idea will work for you whether you are a planner or a procrastinator.

And even though this is Valentine Day themed, you can use this idea anytime of year.

It requires a little preparation on your part but is super easy.

It is called Valentine Detective (or if you are playing it just because, call it GRAND Detective).

Prepare to Play

  • Cut out several paper hearts in different shapes and colours. You can also just use white printer paper – don’t let the details stop you from doing it!
  • Tape them to different places in your house (on your bathroom mirror, your toaster, tv, etc.)

How to Play

  • Ask your grandchild to meet you on a video chat when they have 5 minutes to be your Valentine Detective.
  • Flip your camera and take them around your home. They must yell ‘heart’ or ‘love’ when they spot a heart.

Top tip: If they speak a different language or they are learning a language at school, look up how to say heart or love in this language and use that word instead. Or if there is a language close to your heart, use this as an opportunity to teach them one word in that language.

Now, you could just leave it at that because grandchildren love looking for things.

But to kick it up a notch…. tell them you have some Valentine’s to send to them, but that you’ve lost them and need their help to find them.

For little ones who are around 2 to 3, just draw faces on the hearts and say, ‘Oh you found the sad heart. Can you make a sad face’?

For older grandchildren (4 to 10), write things on the back of the  heart such as age appropriate Valentine jokes,  Valentine tongue twisters  or I love you because notes…







For some ideas check out:  Door hearts for your grandchild.

To make it extra engaging and fun for them, tape little presents to each heart and let them know you will send them in the mail after your call. You can include anything from a Hershey  kiss chocolate to heart stickers, granola bites or bars, non-toxic tattoos, sports cards, etc.

If you can’t send mail, just ask them to help you find the Valentines and read out the jokes, loving sentiments or have them try and say the tongue twisters.

The beauty of this game to  connect with your  grandchildren is that:

  • There are many variations so you can tailor to the age, interests and attention span of your grandchild. If they are really into something right now, write a quiz question or fun fact about it on the back of the heart.
  • You can do this very last minute and follow-up with things in the mail. A Valentine after Valentine’s Day is completely okay. In fact, they will likely have parties at school or with friends, so surprising them with a love themed care package after Valentine’s Day  will be extra special.

For older grandchildren, who are tweens, teens or adults – if you can, send them a small bouquet of flowers or have a heart shaped pizza delivered to their house or even a fruit basket for your health-conscious grandchildren (and their parents).

You can get edible fruit bouquets in many places now, so have a look online and see if there is something  you can have delivered to make them feel extra special either on or the day after Valentine’s Day.

Hope that helps. Although Valentine’s Day isn’t celebrated by everyone, it is a day to spread love and joy – and grandparents are experts in this department!

Read more from Kerry Bryne here