Thursday, February 13, 2014

Making Valentines

I have many memories of holiday-specific parties at my Grandma's house whether it was building gingerbread houses in December or dyeing Easter Eggs in April or carving pumpkins in October. 

Valentine's Day was always one of my favorite celebrations. My grandma was a much better baker than I am so nearly every party involved baking cookies and decorating them with sprinkles, icing, and assorted sweets. I can still clearly see the line of pink and red icing winding around the curves of heart-shaped cookies and the perfectly formed pink flowers with green icing leaves she placed in the center of each cookie.

I have not carried on with the baking traditions that she passed down, but I have managed to hold on to some of the arts & craft elements of the parties I remember so fondly from childhood.

For Valentine's Day I invited Clara and her cousins to a Valentine making party. It is meaningful to me to be passing down these traditions to the next generation. These celebrations also make me miss my grandma, and wish she was there in the kitchen spooning the icing out of the barely functional old-fashioned mixer that she held on to for decades. I feel grateful for these traditions she created for us.

Valentine's Day is one of the easiest holiday parties to prepare for since we already have ample arts and crafts materials in the house. I just make a pile of paper, markers, stickers, and other craft materials on the table and let the girls create!

We tried an owl and ladybug theme because I found some cute stickers in these themes. I made a couple of demo cards, and then the girls made their own versions on the theme.

After making a few ladybug and owl cards, the girls quickly switched to their own themes and designs. Here are some of the creative cards from the day:

Cousin Isabella was especially poetic in her cards this year bringing clouds and stars into her celestial themed cards: 

I love the precision and thoughtfulness that Natasha put into creating a pattern for the flowers on her card:

Clara wrote her cards all by herself using developmental spelling. Translation of below card: 1. happy day 2. great day  3. nice day  4. beautiful day   5. awesome day. 
Inside: 6. Happy Valentine's Day!

I think Clara was inspired to have the Valentine heart in one of her cards in a beach setting after seeing Olaf the snowman in "Frozen" dreaming about summer.

some pop-up action

From Clara to her younger cousin.

It was a fun day for our family to create and celebrate together. This is a tradition I hope we will keep up over the years.

Happy Valentine's Day!


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