Tuesday, February 2, 2016


Valentine's Day is coming so jump into this activity to be ready. And have fun along the way.

During the Victorian Age, Valentine’s Day cards became works of art and action cards became popular.  Here are step-by-step instructions for making some that are historic favorites--and some that are sure to make history.  

Window To My Heart  

Who doesn't love a surprise. Here are two that are easy to do and lots of fun to receive.

PEEK-A-BOO Card: To make this card, first cut a heart out of folded paper so it's hinged. Have a child glue their photo inside. Then mark the spot where the eyes will be when the heart card is closed. On the side that will be the outside of the card when it's closed, poke holes with a hole punch or a sharp pencil.  Finally have the child add a "Guess Who Loves You?" message on the face of the card. And a "It's me, love note" inside.

I LOVE YOU THIS MUCH Card: Making this card offers kids a chance to share measuring how far they can stretch. Have the child lay on the paper and draw around their hands. Have them print H-U-G in between. Print a Happy Valentine's Wish on the back. Then fold up or roll up and send. Sure to be a Valentine Card grandparents will keep-forever!

Both of these cards are courtesy of G Is For Gift.

Sweet Scent Of Love
 Potpourri was extremely popular in Victorian homes so Valentine’s cards often included sweet scented sachets. Here's a kid-friendly recipe for making potpourri. Once that's done, have kids cut twin hearts and carefully print a message on one. Next staple the edges together (with the message out and visible) except for the top. Tuck some potpourri inside and then finish stapling. 

Potpourri Recipes

Apple Potpourri Recipe
1 Cup dried apple slices
2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/4 Cup whole allspice berries
10 (2") cinnamon sticks
2 Tablespoon whole cloves
1/4 Cup sumac, canella or nandina berries
10 small pine cones
7 drops cinnamon essential oil
Combine all ingredients and place in a tight jar or tin. Shake every few days. Cinnamon oil has an extremely strong scent that intensifies as it is absorbed. Add additional oil if needed. The red sumac berries that grow wild can be used dried as a stabilizer for potpourri (in other recipes it takes the place of orris root which is very expensive).

Simple Spice Potpourri Recipe
1 oz. can cinnamon sticks, broken into small pieces
1 (1.12 oz.) can whole cloves
1 (1.25 oz.) can whole allspice
dried orange peels
Combine all ingredients. Place 1 heaping teaspoon and 1/2 cup of water in simmer pot and heat.

Rose Potpourri
Lay rose petals out to dry on a flat surface for several days. You will need about 6 cups.
3 cinnamon sticks
A few drops of essential oil
Mix together and place in a jar. Shake every few days and let sit for 7-10 days. Then package and give away in potpourri pillows or gift bags.

Recipes courtesy of Kids Cooking Activities.

Kids could also simply glue the potpourri onto paper hearts.

For longer lasting Valentine hearts, make them out of felt or other cloth and stitch them together.

In case you were wondering, Potpourri is the French word for "rotten pot". In fact, it refers to flower petals, leaves, herbs and spices which are dried to keep them from rotting. They were frequently used in Victorian times to improve how homes smelled.

Magic Message  

Send a card that looks blank but comes with a set of instructions. This Valentine card idea is courtesy of The Magic Onions.

It is a tradition in South Africa to never sign your Valentine’s Day card with your name… it is so much fun. All cards come from secret admirers and you are never quite sure who the card was from. You can guess (and, sometimes, hope) but the sender never reveals his true identity. I received a few Valentine’s cards in my younger years and I must tell you, the intrigue was wonderful!

So, when K wanted to make Valentine’s Day cards for her friends, I suggested she make ‘Secret Admirer’ cards… the ‘secret’ part had her hooked and she eagerly agreed to my idea.
As it was raining outside, I set up her art table looking out at the rain. She needed white card paper, a white candle, water color paints and a paintbrush.
Secret Valentine's Day CardShe began by folding the paper in half to make a card.
Then, on the outside of each card, she used the white candle to draw designs on the white paper. She needed to press rather hard with the candle as the thicker the wax on the paper, the better the result.
Drawing with a candle was a wonderfully imaginative experience for her as she had to picture her drawing in her mind. She couldn’t see it on the paper and she found this quite amazing… as if she was creating an invisible letter!
At last it was time for painting.
She couldn’t quite believe that her drawings would magically appear when she painted over them.
‘Look, MOM!!’ she exclaimed with excitement as each stroke revealed her secret design!
When her cards had dried, she once again used the candle to draw on the inside of the card. She discovered that if she held her card just so in the sun, the wax shined her writing back to her.
This page will be left, unpainted, for the recipient of her Valentine to paint themselves… K’s design will magically appear before their eyes… ooh, how amazed they’ll be!
Blessing and magic.

Or use a science trick to send a valentine card with a secret message revealed by holding it close to the heat of lit lightbulb.  The directions will include the secret of invisible ink and why heat works like magic.

Try this activity now, courtesy of Playdough to Plato

Bloomin’ Hearts
This card has a packet of flower seeds tucked into a slot in a paper flowerpot.  It’s a card that keeps on giving as the seeds sprout and the young plants grow.

Directions are courtesy of Faithfullyfree

This tutorial is for Seed Packet Valentines, you can view my other Valentine’s Day projects here.
This year I am focusing on giving candy-free valentines. Don’t get me wrong, I love candy as much as the next person, but with four kids, the last thing I need is a house full of candy! We literally had four Walmart bags full of candy over Halloween. That’s just TOO MUCH candy! My first candy-free valentine is the DIY Seed Packet Valentines. My kids would love receiving these because they love to plant, well just about anything, and then watch it grow. The coolest thing about giving seeds is that they last much longer than candy, and will leave the recipient thinking of you every time they see them. This year the kids are going to take in some of these seed packet valentines, as well as some other pretty cool cards I’ve been working on (I’m going to try to get those up this weekend) so stay tuned!
These are so easy to put together, and I’m even including a free flower pot valentine printable for those of you who may not have the time to create your own! You can get your free printable below.
Materials for Seed Packet Valentines: 
– White Cardstock
– Razor Blade or X-Acto Knife
– Spray Adhesive
– Tape
– Glitter
– Seed Packets
-Pencils (optional)
You can grab your free Flower Pot Printable Valentine here. These only print two per page because they have to be big enough to fit the seed packet.
After your print the flower pot, simply cut it out, and then using a razor blade or X-acto knife cut a slit across the top of the pot (keep the cut within the outline of the pot to avoid ripping the card).
Using a spray adhesive, lightly spray the cardstock and sprinkle with glitter. You can also use liquid glue, but I find the spray easier to use.
Insert seed packets into valentines and affix the bottom of the packet with tape.
Attach a pencil with tape as well, and you’re done! You can skip the pencil if you want to make a less expensive card.
Seed Packet Valentines

Or just follow the idea shared by ABCs & Garden Peas to wrap and give a seed packet. Perfect for growing friendships.

Pop-Up Card  

Open this card and get a big surprise.  Step-by-step instructions make it easy to create a card with a pop-up action figure.
This idea is courtesy of  Make and Takes

Want to send a Valentine card that really POPs?! Try this fun technique for helping your card stand out from the crowd. Because “Valentine, you make my heart POP!”
Supplies for Heart Pop Up Cards:
  • 1 sheet of paper, any size
  • pencil
  • scissors
  • 1 sheet of cardstock paper, larger than your first paper
  • small cut out shape of a heart
  • crayons, markers, or stickers to decorate
1. Fold your smaller paper in half. With your pencil, draw 2 lines on the edge of a folded card about 2 inches apart and 1 inch in. You can make your lines large or small, fat or skinny. It all depends on what you are planning to have pop out on the inside.
2. Cut along the pencil lines with your scissors.
3. Fold back the cut out area to make a good crease in the fold.
4. Open up the card and bend the new fold forward, making it pop out.
Now you can glue anything you want to the space that pops out. Make sure not to put glue on the top of the step, just the front edge. We added our large 2-3 inch heart.

Glue on your cardstock piece of paper to the back. Then write some fun words to your Valentine. I wrote “You make my heart POP!” for a fun Valentines day card. This card is ready to give your loved one this Valentines!

Or kids can do a foldable card to send their love with this template courtesy of Martha Stewart.

Now you're all set to make this Valentine's Day fun for everyone!

1 comment:

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    Mr Gix

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