XOXO Cupcakes for Valentine’s Day

last minute valentine's day cupcakes

If you are concerned about red food dye ( which I wasn’t when I wrote this obviously but now restrict as much as possible  ) use this  Natural Color red dye instead!

  1. Gather your ingredients. I cheat when it comes to baking so, a cake mix and it’s ingredients, some rope licorice ( I used pull and peel twizzlers) , icing , the above mentioned red and pink food coloring, and a few extra bowls.
  2. Make the cake mix, separate it into two bowls one red and one pink. If I did this again I would make the pink lighter so there was more contrast.
  3. Fill the muffin cups with the red first , then at the pink, I used a toothpick to swirl it a little.
  4. Bake and let cool.
  5. While they cool add a little more pink food coloring to the white icing.
  6. Ice the cupcakes when cool.
  7. Start creating with the licorice, write names, messages or just hearts! The licorice is really easy to work with!
  8. Have a treat!
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Lovely Butterflies

Dainty Doily
Bugs

I can’t count the number of times I have made this craft but it wasn’t until I saw this post over at Just 4 Fun that I got my tush in gear and made it! Sandy does a whole bunch of awesome activities , if you haven’t seen her blog you need to pop over there! I got the package of doilies at the dollar store and the water color was perfect for the fragile paper.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need 2 doily hearts, some red and pink construction paper glue, water colors, a paint brush, small dish for water, googly eyes and a pipe cleaner.
  2. Start by painting the doilies with water colors. This was the first time my son had used them and after teaching him a quick chant of “Water, Color , Paper!” it was smooth sailing.
  3. While they are painting, cut out a butter fly body from the red paper.
  4. Cut out a small heart from the pink paper for a mouth.
  5. Glue the doilies together at the point end.
  6. Add glue on top
  7. Add your butterfly body.
  8. Glue on the mouth.
  9. Add the glue for the eyes, and glue them on
  10. Poke two holes in the top and feed your pipe cleaner through. Tape on the back for extra stability. Curl the ends.
Books!

“Will You Still Love Me?” by Jean-Baptiste Baronian is a sweet little book about Polo the polar bear , and his anxiety about his parent;s love for him when they seem busy with something else. Turns out that mama is about to have a baby ! This is a good book to reinforce the depths of parent’s love and how even with the addition of a new baby , parent’s love doesn’t get split in half! My son loved all the artic animals in the book.


“Did I Tell You I Love You Today?” by Deloris Jordan is a very practical yet heartwarming look at all the ways parents show love to their children everyday, from feeding them healthy food to praying after they go to bed. My son loved all the big boy things in the book like, the school bus, basketball and the playground. I teared up reading the book, but I cry at American Idol so that may not be indicative of anything!

“I Love You With All My Heart!” by Noris Kern is the precursor to “Will you Still Love Me” the author is the illustrator in the other book. The characters are the same and the story is equally as sweet. It’s a slow but calming story about Polo’s quest to understand what mama bear means when she says she loves him with all her heart!

All girls want jewlery for Valentine’s day, if you are a mom you get Pasta!


Pasta Necklaces

Some people look forward to owning mini vans, some look forward to dancing at their child’s wedding- I can’t wait for my son to bring me home a pasta necklace! This is not an activity for young toddlers, they must have fine motor skills and be past the ” I put everything I am not suppose to eat into my mouth!” stage. My suggestion is no one under 3 at the youngest.

  1. Gather your materials! Get some of the yummy dyed pasta you made, some string or ribbon, and scissors.
  2. There are two ways to make sure your child doesn’t simply thread pasta on the ribbon only to let it fall… you can tie one piece of pasta on the end to make a stopper, or you can tape the ribbon onto the table.
  3. I encourage you to do this with your child, make a necklace for him or her or even your mom! Don’t worry about the pattern if there is one on your child’s necklace but if you think your child is able to recognize patterns, start a simple pattern on the necklace you are making and once it has repeated a few times, ask your child what they think comes next.
  4. Tie it and Voila . Wear it proudly!
Song!



On a day like Valentine’s Day when we are talking about Love and other emotions a song like this is a great tool to teach about emotions. Songs like these help kids recognize different emotions and ultimately helps them learn empathy.


If you are Happy and you know it…..remix

If you are happy and you know it
clap your hands.
If you are happy and you know it
clap your hands.
If you are happy and you know it
and you really want to show it
if you’re happy and you know it
clap your hands.


Next verses:
Sad/ Wipe your tears
Silly / Make a funny face
Sleepy / Yawn real big
Hungry/Make some food

Apple Print Valentines



Valentine’s is only days away, so I thought I better get to sharing an activity that can be made into a special Valentine’s activity. Apple printing is great any time of year, just skip the last step of cutting the paper into the shape of a heart!

  1. Gather your materials. You’ll need an apple, some paint, a plate, and some paper. I am re- using a paper grocery bag. Whenever I use paint I like to put an extra layer between the project and the table surface, so I cut the paper bag in two and used half for an under layer and taped it to my table using painters tape.
  2. Cut your apple in two lengthwise, this way you will get a heart shape when you print it!
  3. Pour some paint on to your plate , you don’t need much at all. If you put too much you will just get a blob of paint instead of a nice print.
  4. Print !!
  5. Let the prints dry before drawing a heart and cutting it out!

Books!



All of these books have love as a theme , ” Daddy Hugs” is a great counting book for young toddlers, “The Kissing Hand” is a wonderful story and great for kids experiencing separation anxiety at school, and ” I love you forever” will make any mom cry, and most dads too!


Daddy Hugs” by Karen Katz
I love you Forever “
by Robert Munsch
“The Kissing Hand”
by Audrey Penn