Friday, February 10, 2012

I Don't Buy..... Valentines (or any other cards)

To go along with the time of year I decided I would talk about Valentines today. I don't know that I have ever bought a valentine though I did used to buy other kinds of greeting cards.

 For the average person I doubt card purchases are a very large part of their annual budget but I personally try to be careful in the large AND small areas of our budget and so I don't buy any cards. This is not just for saving money however- I do think that card making is a lot of fun and when I involve the kids it is a chance for them to do crafts (which they enjoy) which can then be sent or given away to bring joy to someone else's day as well. I also just really like handmade things. There is something personal and special about giving or receiving something handmade.

 At our Homeschool groups' get-together this month the kids had a valentine exchange. That meant the each kid needed 30 valentines to give away. I admit it would have been easier (I would think anyway) to go out and buy something premade. That isn't our style though and though it took time we had a lot of fun working together to make the valentines using things we already had on hand. Here is what the kids did:

 Megan wanted to make fairly traditional heart shaped valentines. I simply gave her some odds and ends of paper, a glue stick, an ink pad and a stamp that said "Happy Valentines Day", some ribbon scraps that I had and she also used a heart punch and a hole punch and she got busy creating. She did also add some candy we had on hand to some of them. They turned out looking pretty sweet and it was an activity that kept her busy for quite some time!
Mara being older was able to do a little more complicated craft. At my suggestion she made crayon hearts using these instructions (which we found via pinterest) and some of our many old crayon pieces. After they were done she wrapped them up in cellophane which come around the flowers that I get for my business and then added little tags to them that she made on the computer.

 For the older girls Mara thought it would be nice to make something more mature. I suggested decorating some pencils that we had. The pencils were ones we had been given that had never been sharpened but had (for whatever reason) their erasers pulled off. She decided to decorate the eraser end. For one pencil the just glued on a silk rose that we had but then she decided to make flowers for the others and she came up with a very cute heart flower idea.
 Mara covered the top of the pencil with a round piece of felt and then glued 4 heart shaped pieces around to create the flower.
  One year I had made valentines for our kids by making animals out of hearts. I suggested that idea to Aaron this year and he thought that would be fun. We found even more ideas for heart shaped animals and the two of us had fun making a bunch. The above picture is a sampling of the ones that we made.
 Jonathan would prefer to skip the whole making of Valentines as he doesn't see the purpose (and I have to admit with big exchanges I kind of wonder myself!) but food he can appreciate. He decided to make some yummy granola bars for everybody and they were enjoyed! This recipe was another pinterest find and you can head over to Marathon Mom to find the recipe. It uses healthy ingredients, is really easy to make and very, very yummy. I have made and shared them several times now and they have been a big hit!
 Here are some other posts that I have written on cards making:

More Valentines Day ideas:
I am linking this to Frugal Friday at Life as MOM


Mom2fur said...

So many cute ideas! I love the felt flower pencils best. I think even a grownup would like them. (I know I would!)

Bridgett said...


Melissa said...

Your kids did a great job!! I especially like Mara's creativity with the pencils.


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