You might have been there: the night before Valentine’s Day (or the classroom party) at the grocery store, picking through the remaining boxes of Valentines. Or scrambling for last minute gift ideas.
I love the handmade attempts. I would rather have someone share something that they’ve made and maybe even given a little thought to as they put it together.
I hope some of these ideas that my family has tried will help you in celebrating and showing love to others in what can be a quite commercial holiday.
1. Start early
A heart-a-day is an easy way to tell your kids what they mean to you. Cut out hearts for as many days as you wish leading up to Valentine’s Day (or buy pre-cut ones), and every night after they fall asleep, leave a heart for them with a positive message written on it that they will see as they start the next day. It can be as simple as, “I love you!” or something you saw them do the previous day, “You were a great brother today when you helped your sister pick up her toys.” Share with them Bible verses that center around love! John 3:16 and 1 John 4:19 are great ones to start with (and also great first verses to memorize if that’s a goal for this year).
2. Keep it simple
I’m all about the easy-to-make cards. Many ideas I get from Pinterest; just search “Valentine’s Day cards” and you’ll see many options. You can also follow us on Pinterest and see the buzz around the office with ideas we want to share with you.
Here’s a no-fail option:
-First, cut out a heart. Fold a colored piece of paper in half, and on the fold cut out half of a heart. Then open to see your heart (and the resulting shell or template you’ve created).
-Set aside the heart and grab the template first. And a piece of white paper that will be your card. Fold the white paper in half for the card.
-Gather up a few ink pads and a pencil eraser. Using the shell or template from cutting out your heart, hold that in position on the front of your folded paper (card). You can also lightly tape it down if you want. Then, use the pencil eraser on the end of a standard pencil to create a mosaic effect in the template. Don’t be stingy with the stamped images. Fill the white space on the paper. When finished, remove the template and see the resulting colorful heart!
-Now grab the heart you first cut out. Make it 3-D by gluing a thin strip on each side and pasting that right in the middle of the inside of the card. Help make the folds so that when the recipient opens the card, the heart pops out at them. Achieve a similar effect with a thin accordion-folded strip of paper glued both to the back of the heart and the center of the card.
Another fun idea: paper cell phones using candy buttons as the number pad (think old school cell phone). Depending on how much you want to spend, consider candy attached to a card with a play on words: “You’re a smart one, Valentine!” with Smarties, “You make my heart pop!” with mini popcorn bags or Poprocks, “I chews you!” with bubble gum….you get the idea. All of my ideas were lifted shamelessly from the internet, but plenty of non-food related play on words there as well!
3. Turn their snacks into love notes
I love to show my kids in a variety of ways that I love them. I also appreciate the “cheesy” attempts as well. If you have a few heart-shaped cookie cutters handy, make their snacks something to see! If nothing else, they will one day talk about how silly Mom was all those years. But it will be a memory! And I don’t know about you, but I’m always trying to make those memories good ones, even if at the expense of a few eye rolls.