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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Valentine Love for Your Kids

Remember these Memory Valentines from last year?  You can see the original post here.  They are made by using the letters of the name vertically, and filling in character or personality traits for each letter horizontally.  I used a February photo of my boys from each year going all the way back to their first Valentine's Day (or close to it - thank you automatic dating on digital pics!).

I made mine with simple things - red cardstock, alphabet stickers, valentine stickers, and black and white photos printed on regular printer paper.  You could really do this same idea up with any number of things though.  There are probably heart-shaped wood plaque things that you could mod podge onto.  I have kept track of these (they were all made in different years) and get them out every February.

This year I hung them on wide, wired ribbon leftover from Christmas.  It's a red, polka dot ribbon that sparkles.
I just lined them vertically and hot glued them on, then added a knot of ribbon at the top for hanging.  I put this on the back of our front door with sticky tack.

And I love it!  Those chubby cheeks and Momma snuggles, and remembering special things about my boys that make them's so sweet to have them all together now : )

Here are a few other ideas that have jumped out at me this year, as special ways to tell your kids you love them!

I've seen several of these DIY scratch-off Valentine tutorials, but this one from Come Together Kids is different.  It lasts a whole YEAR!  These are monthly scratch-off hearts that have a surprise activity for special one-on-one time with a parent.  It  plans a year of monthly dates with your child, that they have the excitement of revealing by scratching off when the new month hits.  I think this idea is so absolutely awesome!  You can use the printable for the monthly hearts, then write in your own activities, and follow the tutorial to make the DIY scratchy bit (which looks pretty easy).  
Good work, Laura!!  And thank you for sharing this inspiring and creative project!

I'm head over heels for this idea, too, and plan to put it in action this year!  It's a very simple one - cut hearts out of construction paper, write nice things on them about your child, and tape them all over their bedroom door so they get a surprise love attack when they walk out in the morning.  So cute!
I know a family who covers the doorway with streamers for every birthday, so the birthday boy/girl gets to break through in the morning.  It would be fun to have lots of streamers and/or hearts hanging down from the door frame, too.  My Little Man doesn't stay in his room all night though, so the surprise would be spoiled if I covered the doorway with streamers.  He may stumble out half awake without noticing hearts though, and then they'd still be a surprise for the brother he shares a room with ; )

Family Day
While I love a good kid-free date night with the Hubs, I also think the idea of a whole family event for Valentine's Day is very sweet.  I think this family hit the nail right on the head with their "We Love to Be a Family Day!" , including clues and a treasure map for five family activities.  A simple and inexpensive plan, tailored to your family, that promotes togetherness and lasting memories.  She even provides a printable template to help you plan your own!

Other Traditions
While Valentine's Day is traditionally a romantic holiday for couples, it's also a great time to teach children about sharing love in the home and with those around them!  Here are a few ideas for other things that you could make into Valentine's Day traditions...

Share the love!  Do a family act of kindness:
Take handmade cards to a nursing home
Deliver pet treats to an animal shelter
Make some Valentine goodie bags for the children's hospital 
Leave an anonymous treat "Love Bucket" on a neighbor's doorstep
Heart Attack a neighbor!
Wrap a heart-shaped helium balloon around someone's mailbox

Make it Special:
Pink milk & heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast
Dinner of only red/pink foods
OR dinner with everyone's favorite foods
Decorate the table, use the china, eat by candlelight
Make a Family Mailbox, fill it up with love notes for each other 
and open it on Valentine's Day


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