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Cool ways to celebrate Valentine's Day with your teen

Mary Fetzer is a freelance writer and marketing consultant with a marketing degree from Penn State University and 15 years of international business experience. Mary specializes in writing about parenting, children, pregnancy, college, h...

Your teen is not too old to enjoy Valentine's Day

They're so over the paper Valentine exchange, but your tween or teen will enjoy these more grown-up Valentine's Day activities.

Dinner. Hit your teen's favorite restaurant to celebrate the holiday, or surprise your child with reservations at a swanky place that requires you to dress up. And no matter how much homework there is to finish, make it a relaxed, languorous dinner that shows no semblance whatsoever to your weekly McDonald's run.

A movie. It's not exactly cool for a teen to be seen with parents at the movies. Offer to pick up the tab for tickets and popcorn for your child and a couple of close friends. Drop them off at the cinema while you catch a bite to eat or do a little shopping. If your teen actually likes you, consider staying in, renting a few blockbusters and ordering a pizza or two.

Drinks. Of course you don't want to break the law by serving your child an alcoholic beverage. But offer the opportunity to hang with you while enjoying a luscious virgin cocktail.

Coupons. No parent wants to battle with a teen over chores, curfews, bedtimes…  Take off a little bit of the pressure with a coupon booklet. The coupons can be anything from "A Chore-Free Night" to "Double Allowance Week."

Pampering. Make it a mother-daughter Valentine's Day with a date to a spa for facials and massages, to the hairdresser for a cut and color or to the salon for a fun mani-pedi. Enjoy a lovely lunch together afterward... and maybe a little shopping, too.

Guy stuff. Most teen guys aren't going to enjoy the pampering, so why not schedule something a little more manly for this mostly-for-girls holiday. Dads and sons can spend a day at the driving or shooting range or beating up on each other playing laser tag or paintball. Or take in a local boxing match or other sporting event.

A party. Throw a cheesy Valentine's Day party with the works: decorations, favors, snacks. Require guests to wear red. Your teen and guests will roll their eyes at first, but since they're all hanging out together, they will soon find themselves having a really good time.

Keep it simple on Feb. 14. Your teen may be too old for kiddie Valentine sentiments and too young for Cupid's romance, but trust us: He or she still wants to celebrate the day.

Image: Flickr/Carol VanHook

More parenting stuff for Valentine's Day

Naming Cupid: Valentine's Day baby names
Easy Valentine's Day crafts for kids
Valentine's Day party games

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