Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentines Projects

For Valentines this year, we made wooden conversation heart necklaces.  I saw the idea on someone's blog somewhere, but it's not one I normally read, and I didn't bookmark it, so I can't give credit, but suffice it to say:  idea not mine. 

I bought the hearts here, and C drilled a small hole near the top of each of them.  Then we went to work with paint and brushes.

I always take on these big projects and then, halfway through begin to regret it.  This one had to be spread out over two weekends, and the painting part, other than a certain someone being very particular about how he wanted to paint his (I was going with the assembly line method, with each kid doing all the hearts in each of two colors, but Z wanted to do all of the colors).

We were going to stamp on little candy conversation heart sayings, and I even bought a box of them for the purpose.  But I found the sayings on them neither very clever or kindergarten and fourth grade appropriate (U R Hot, etc.).  Didn't they have better sayings on them when we were kids?

As it turned out, we barely had room for the kids' names on them, let alone the crafty stamina to do much more.  Happily, we still have the boys' name stamps that I had made last year, which made "signing" the hearts fast and easy.

We strung them with red yarn and, 51 hearts later, called it good.

This weekend, we also made a graham cracker gingerbread house.  There's no way a gingerbread house will happen around Christmas time with all the other stuff going on, so two years ago I got the idea of making them for Valentine's day.  We never got around to it last year, but E and Z have been asking to make one for a while.

I have a tendency to dread these kind of projects, expecting them to take up more time and trouble than they actually do.  I had no idea when we'd fit this in (they hearts took up much of Saturday), but the boys were ready to do it as soon as they got out of bed Sunday, so while breakfast cooked, I mixed up the icing and piped it on while they stuck on various candies from the health food store.  They wanted to make a castle, which turned out to be an excellent idea, with a flat roof being much easier than a peaked one.  The whole thing only took about half an hour (and I bowed down in gratitude that I hadn't given in to my urge to make the gingerbread from scratch too).

C and I have a lunch date planned, and I actually ordered him a real present (which hasn't arrived yet)!  For each of the boys, I tucked a small chocolate and a little Wade figurine (you know the ones from Red Rose Tea) that I picked up in an antique store into the little stuffed heart pockets I made last year.

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