05 February 2007

Love's Own Day: A Family Affair

*updated to include some more ideas relevant to Shannon's WFMW!

I picked these ideas up at an open house at one of my favorite home stores, Belle Maison, in SLC. All these charming ideas come from Tasha Tudor's Valentine's Day anthology All for Love. When her children were little, Miss Tudor used to create tiny little magazines, catalogues, and cards for her children and their dolls, and had them delivered in the mail! Miss Tudor reminisces: "Valentine production starts as soon as Christmas is over. It takes many hours to make the number of small valentines required for this special day. And, of course, each person and each toy character has to receive enough cards to feel warmly loved. Besides the exchanging of the tiny greetings, when the children were little, a whole celebration would be planned."

Cupid's Tea

To inspire you, why not have a "Cupid's Tea" the weekend before Valentine's Day for all your family members and close friends? The purpose: to create homemade valentines.

Valentine's Day Breakfast

Start off the day with an early morning greeting: "Good morning to you, Valentines. Has any sweet child been stung by Cupid's bow and arrow?" (Cupid has left a special old-fashioned valentine underneath each child's pillow.) Begin celebrating at breakfast with heart-shaped cinnamon toast and strawberry muffins with hot drinks served in heart-patterned mugs. Make the table bright with cheery red-and-white heart placemats and napkins.

School Supplies

Slip a small gift in your children's book bag that they can use at school - perhaps a heart-shaped pad, pencils, pencil sharpener, or eraser. Also include a funny valentine from Mom and Dad tucked into their lunch, along with heart-shaped sandwiches (use cookie cutters) and cookies. Festive red-and-white paper napkins complete their Valentine's Day lunches.

The Dolls' Tea Party

After school there's a valentine tea party for all the dolls and stuffed toy friends who keep the children such good company throughout the year. Dolls and toys are, as you no doubt realize, very generous to those good children who take such loving care of them, so when the children arrive at the party, they're sure to find tiny foil-covered, heart-shaped chocolates and valentines waiting for them in the arms of their faithful companions.

Home Sweet Home

In the evening, illuminate the dining room with candlelight for a family St. Valentine's Day party. At each person's place setting, have a gold-foil paper cornucopia pilled with penny-candy motto hearts, chocolate kisses, and pink mints. During dinner, tell the children the story of your courtship.

Remember that family traditions require an investment of creative and emotional energy. Like enduring love, they are true affairs of the heart.

A couple things I like to do for Valentine's Day is pull out my wedding invitation and frame it with a display of other Valentine decorations... homemade valentine's and red candles. I make HUGE heart-shaped sugar cookies with chocolate icing and red hots, or white icing and conversation hearts, for an after school snack. The kids get a Valentine lunch complete with fancy paper bag and napkin, a little love note, apple ring slices with a heart cut-out of the middle, a string of red licorice tied around their graham crackers, red fruit punch and a heart-shaped sandwich. One year I put together a book of memories for my husband, with old pictures and funny captions, love notes, etc. I came up with one page for each year we had been married. Another year I made a big 3D heart of Her$hey's kisses and Ree$e's Peanut Butter Cups. This year our family is participating in a service project that's like the 12 days of Christmas. For 7 days we treat another family to a secret surprise of some kind or other. We are coming up with riddles for them to solve and leave out on their door step. Then we'll come pick it up and leave them a treat if they've answered it correctly. Some ideas are - a list of family movies to pick from, and a bottle of pop and some popcorn. A gallon of ice cream with bananas, Her$hey's chocolate syrup and a jar of marachino cherries. And a compilation of scriptures dealing with love.


An Ordinary Mom said...

My little 5 year old daughter loves holidays, and she especially loves Valentine's Day. I will have to do some of these ideas to make her day extra special. Thanks for sharing!

Carol said...

Such lovely thoughts n ideas to share with. Loved your blog.
Check out mine too http://familyecards.blogspot.com/. I hope u'll like it..

txmommy said...

fun ideas!!

I like to "do" valentines day. This year I am saving up TP rolls and then decorating the outsides with pink paper and hearts etc. I will stuff a little treat into tissue and thread it through then with curling ribbon I'll tie off both sides make a loop and hang them on everyone's breakfast chair in the morning. a happy little start the day.

A couple different years I have done a count down for DH leaving little notes or gifts starting a week or so before the big day.

Fun Fun!

Lei said...

oh - cute idea! love it...

Nikki said...

I am saving your post to refer back to within this next week. I LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT! Thank you for tons of wonderful new ideas!

All OUT Valentine's Day

Julie P said...

Fun list! Thanks for some of those ideas!

Barbara H. said...

Some sweet ideas there -- thank you!

kfk said...

Oh, that all sounds so......sweet!

I'm just not creative like that!

Ivey Elizabeth Sirmans said...

These are some Great ideas.

Now-please tell me how you got music on your blog!! I love it!!! I have been trying for 2 months and still can't figure it out! If you don't mind will you send me some info about how to add music.

Ivey Elizabeth Sirmans said...

I think I have it figured out. I hear music, but have no idea if anyone else does. Oh well...

utmommy said...

I'm still trying to think of something fun to do for DH and the kiddos. I may have to steal a few of your ideas.