I came across these darling cherries on the website The House that Lars Built. I originally suggested Hallie do some cute emoji valentines until she informed me that emojis were no longer cool. Noted. She didn’t have any idea of what she wanted, just what she didn’t. I happened to show her these darling cherries and she suddenly had an opinion. This is what she wanted to make. Then the thought of making those for her 32 classmates didn’t seem like such a great idea. But she had her mind made up – luckily they were easier than I imagined and they were done in no time.
Out of my three kids in elementary school and one kid in preschool – Hallie was the only one that needed to provide a box for Valentine’s day – and even then it was optional. She’s in her last year at the school and I thought maybe she would feel too old to do a cutesy box. She told me just before leaving for Mexico she wanted to create something. After a search on pinterest she landed on the hot air balloon.
This afternoon was spent bringing that vision to life. The worst part was while we were cutting out the balloons Hallie said, “Mom – does it make you really sad knowing that you’ll never get to do this again with your daughter?” She was smirking when she said it, but it made me stop in my cutting. She was right. My boys are not going to want to make cutesy bumble bees or gumball machines or popcorn buckets or hot air balloons. In fact when making a box in their class is optional they choose the decorated paper sack. I really will miss these projects with her; she knows how to cut me deep! 😉
Back to the hot air balloon! We took 8 sheets of 12×12 paper and cut them into a balloon shape. We used spray glue to attach them together. The balloon portion is being held up by 4 dowels (wrapped in red and white wrapping paper) that were notched so the paper balloon actually sits in the dowel. The dowels were attached to the side of the basket with some twine. It was the perfect final-valentines-box-project.
This is usually how school Valentine’s go down at our house. I’m usually thinking about it fairly early – and I think – this is the year that I’m going to walk into Target and buy a box of valentine’s and go on my merry way. And every year, I walk down that aisle and find several that would work great. Only to realize that there’s 24 valentine’s in the box and there’s 27 kids in the class. Very sneaky.
You think I’m going to buy two boxes and be stuck with 19 extras?? Nope. Not going to happen. I keep hoping one year I’m going to walk down and see a box that caters to a classroom of 30. Until then…I’ll be making my own! A quick trip to the bulk food section at WinCo gave me all the candy needed in exactly the quantities I needed and it was way cheaper!
Hunter went with the gummy sharks – You are Jawsome. You can buy the sharks on Amazon – which I almost did. But I found them for a fraction of the cost at WinCo. Hunter’s favorite soda shack puts one of these sharks in a special drink and he loves it.
Bennett went for the Lego candy – Best Friend on the Block. I’m not a fan of Lego candy but my kids go nuts over it and they were just hoping there would be leftovers when we finished bagging them all.
Cannon went with fruity tootsie rolls – You’re the Tootsie to my roll. He carefully selected two of each flavor and put them in the bag – perfect activity for a preschooler!
After the Christmas decor comes down and I’ve finished sweeping the red and green glitter – I like to get my house back in order. It always feels like Valentine’s sneaks up on me and it seems I’m never quite ready to deck the house out again in holiday decor. Don’t get me wrong – I love to decorate for the holidays, but some holidays I go for simple and Valentine’s is one of them.
In the past I’ve made many red and pink crafts including the Valentine’s rag banner that hangs along our entertainment center. I also think it’s fun to get the kids involved and have them help make some decorations. Here’s a printable banner I designed for them to color.
For full instructions and the free printable download, go to howdoesshe.com.
I like to get Valentine’s boxes squared away early – actually I like to get most school projects squared away early – because I am a much better helping parent when it’s not last minute and we’re not all frustrated. I was looking back at pictures and realized Hunter has only had one year where the teacher asked that they bring a box. The other years they decorated paper bags at class. I’m all for simplification, but I’m also a creative. To be honest, when you have three kids in elementary school, it helps if one of the teachers goes simple!
Here’s a few Valentine’s boxes from our past as well as a few from pinterest that have caught my eye – just in case my kids need to create something this year. 🙂