Valentine's Day. Yes it's a fake holiday that Hallmark probably invented but when you have kids it's so much fun! Honestly, I pretty much use every possible holiday as an excuse to go out of my way to bake or craft something with the kids. I inevitably get in over my head and stay up until 3 am finishing these quarter started projects, but I still enjoy the satisfaction of another holiday spent with my youngins' and hopefully we have solidified memories for years to come. I want my children to look back on their childhood and remember all the birthday parties, desserts, and art projects we made together. Of course they probably won't remember the specifics but to have that general feeling of happiness and magic when you think back to being a kid is just so important. I always remember my mother baking the cakes and cupcakes for our birthdays or family events and I also remember that there was always a celebration for our birthday and major holidays no matter how big or small. Now that I am a mom, I know that there are more tears and stress involved than I ever imagined. It all seems so small and inconsequential until you see the joy on those little faces and you know it was all worth it. They are just kids who get excited about everything and I love to do anything to maintain that constant state of excitement and wonder.
The awesome thing about being a mother in this day and age is that Pinterest exists. I am so NOT artistic and creative and I love the abundance of ideas available at my fingertips. Michelle at www.craftymorning.com had super cute monkey valentines we made out of the kids handprints. If there are two things kids love, it is smearing themselves in paint, and monkeys. With three kids under three, the best art projects for us involve handprints and footprints. I also cut out a ton of hearts in various colors for them to glue on construction paper and make things like a love caterpillar and cat. And who are all these valentines for?! Cousins and grandparents of course! And the kids get to have the "exciting" experience of mailing them out themselves. Plus, this gives me a couple years of perfecting my mommy skills before I have to make a gazillion for classmates. Fingers crossed for small class sizes. Check out my V-day Pinterest board for the specifics.
On to the baked goods! I am STILL burned out from Thanksgiving / Christmas baking and could not bring myself to go crazy for this holiday. I have wandered into the magical world of no-bake goods and we made heart shaped, chocolate covered, oreo truffles. Basically just involved crushing a whole package of oreos, mixing the crumbs with cream cheese, rolling out a slab of the concotion and cutting out hearts to be dipped in melted white chocolate. We also made heart shaped rice krispies and added some food dye. Super easy, took about an hour to make both.
What to wear? Oh just adorable t-shirts from Moots Clothing and River Babe Threads. I'm a sucker for a cute tee for the tots and I decided to go up a size so they would be baggy this year, and fitted next year. Hopefully.
Use this fabricated holiday to show your love to your kids in fun and creative ways. For children this holiday is very real and special and fake or not, it's all about L-O-V-E.