Monday, March 7, 2011

Valentines For Kids!

Originally posted 1/25/11

Hello everybody!  Well, it’s almost that time again……Valentine’s Day.  Whether you love it or hate it….it’s quickly approaching.  And if you have kids in school, there is no avoiding it.  We already got our letter sent home from Addy’s class describing what they will need to bring to their Valentine’s party.  Yep, a Valentine for everyone, and a fancy decorated box to keep them in.  And believe me; the letter was very detailed on what kind of treats can be attached.  Luckily, we can still bring in homemade treats, as long as they are peanut free. 
Now, I like to have Addy make her Valentines.  I think that hers should stand out.  I don’t want her to hand out the typical SpongeBob Valentine, or even the newer Justin Bieber variety.  You know, the kind with a super cool tattoo?  Nope, not for us.  I want Addy to put effort and thought into hers.  I want hers to be different.  Of course, I thought this last year too.  And the ones we made took us forever.  And by “we” I mean me.  They were too hard and took too long.  Addy lost interest pretty quickly.  There were flowers, and lollipops, and glitter……This year, I have come up with some ideas that are a whole lot faster and easier.  So easy that a 6 year old could make 20 of ‘em and not complain once. 
We created 3 different Valentines.  Don’t worry, I took close-up pictures of all of them.  You will be able to see exactly what we did, and then copy them.  Of course, you can add your own touches!  Don’t you want to make your Valentines this year too?  Be the one that stands out?  Be the one who looks creative and fun?  Of course you do….I know you by now;) 
Our first Valentine is a cute lil’ cupcake.  This one was the crowd pleaser at my house.  My kids thought this one was a winner.
It is made from cardstock, glue and poof balls.  That’s it.  Could not be easier.  Addy will give these away with real mini-cupcakes.
Here is the back:
Yes, that is my handwriting.  Addy is only in first grade…give the kid a break.  Her writing is still that huge, little kid writing.  Not that mine is much better.  She has big plans for making this Valentine for everyone in her life. 

Our second Valentine also involves poof balls.  What can I say?  I am inspired by the mighty poof ball.
Addy made the cute little buzzy bees with the aforementioned poofs, googly eyes, cardstock, glue and stickers.  She plans on giving these away with “Bit-o-Honey” candies.  We used stickers for the “Bee Mine” because we had them.  It would be just as easy to write it.
Here is a close-up of the cute lil’ bee…
His wings are made from cardstock punched out in heart shapes.  We have a punch, but scissors will work too.  The punch is easier for a 6 year old.  Or a 34 year old who has had too much coffee, and her hands are shaky;)

Our last Valentine is all about crazy faces. 
Paisley got into the act on this one.  She will seize any opportunity to make silly faces….and get her picture taken.  It would also be cute if you dressed your kids in crazy outfits, or did crazy hair do’s, or even crazy make-up??
Here is Addy’s…
Perhaps her should say “It’s scary how much I like you”, as her face is more scary then crazy…but you get the gist of it, right?  We printed this out on the computer…..see above about Addy’s handwriting;)
I really hope you and your kids give these Valentine ideas a try.  Remember when everyone made their own Valentines and didn’t buy them?  I don’t either, but I wish I did.  I’m pretty sure I handed out Punky Brewster or Fraggle Rock Valentines….

And keeping in the Valentine spirit….while strolling through the local Walmartz….I saw some cute little heart shaped snack cakes.  They were heart shaped brownies that were covered in white chocolate.  My kids, of course, desperate to have them.  But I refused because…..I can make that!  And we did.
I used my regular brownie recipe that can be found here http://gourmet.host.tetralogica.com/?Blog=10.  Boxed brownie mix will be fine too;)  I baked them in heart shaped muffin tins, but cookie cutters will work.   
Once the brownies were cooled, I dipped them in melted white chocolate that I thinned with a little vegetable oil. 
I left them to harden on a baking sheet covered with foil.  It only takes a few minutes for the chocolate to harden.  I had set aside some of the white chocolate, melted that, and added red food coloring. 
I swirled that over the top of the brownies.  Don’t look at the one in the back….not my finest work:)
So cute!  Literally, just like the snack cakes from the Walmartz…but I am pretty sure these are going to taste better.
All bagged up and ready to go!  Are you feeling really Valentiney now?  I will have more Valentine crafts and recipes coming up in the next couple of weeks.  I hope you like Valentines Day as much as me!

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