#4 The Date before the Date--Getting my hair or nails done on Valentine's makes me feel happy, relaxed, and very feminine for whatever we have planned for the evening. Even better is going to the spa together and indulging in a couple's massage or a soak in the hot tub. I also like shopping for the right gift and love when my husband unwraps it. Meanwhile, he enjoys seeing the look on my face when he gives me chocolates and flowers. Especially for a night in, you might want to enjoy the other parts of the day.
#3 A Special Restaurant--With little ones, we have not always been able to have a large or long evening. A special restaurant (sometimes a few days before or after February 14) has still made the occasion memorable. We make sure to go someone unusual and festive--fondue, Brazilian churrasco, teppanyaki, or a city landmark, just to name a few. One year we went to Richmond, Virginia's landmark, www.thetobaccocompany.com--amazing and very different from your ordinary steakhouse.
#2 Sleigh Ride--If you live near one, it really is spectacular. Bundled next to the one I love, my absolute favorite ride was up a ski slope to a restaurant--an impressive feat for the horses and a world class view.
#1 Themed Hotel--These hotels cater to couples for a memorable night with each room decorated with a unique style. From the jungle to a palace to a Phantom of the Opera room, you can indulge in a night of fantasy. One of the best is www.anniversaryinn.com.
My other advice is to take turns planning Valentine's Day and try to do something different than the year before (though feel free to repeat past favorites). We often have a special dinner at home on February 14, and celebrate Valentine's Day the weekend before or after when the pressures of school and work do not affect our plans as much. So what will you do this year?