Monday, February 15, 2010

Love: Valentine Recap

Happy February 15th, Everyone!
Valentine Pins from Isle B. Stitching.

So, I had grand intentions of sharing lots of fun ideas with you PRIOR to Valentine's Day.  Mmm, those grand intentions didn't quite materialize into action.  The Bionic Man was away all week for business, and that left me to manage the transport, support, and rapport of three school-age children and their accompanying activities.  It was crazy, I tell you.  Not to mention the responsibilities I had taken on for myself: room parent duties, Primary quarterly activity, teaching a class about inexpensive gift-giving, making chocolate was a little crazy.

And don't even get me started on our Saturday.  You really want to know?  Here's the run-down: 2 birthday parties, 1 Mardi Gras celebration, a piano competition, and a basketball game.  Poor Bionic Man.  Gone all week and then we throw that at him.  He really does have to be bionic to keep up around here, sometimes.

My house is still in recovery.  My sugar levels are through the roof.  This is the first blog post I've written in DAYS.  My apologies.

So.....I'm going to get a leg up on next year, and post all my great ideas for Valentine's Day NOW.  Prep for them this week and you are all set for next year!  Or you could just print off the list and save it for 364 days.  You can manage any of these ideas without much advance prep.  These ideas were part of my presentation for the class I taught this week to our church's group for women (Relief Society) and were gleaned from my own imagination and the imaginations of some of my favorite creative friends.  (You know who you are, Bethany, Heidi, and Leesa!)

Easy and Inexpensive Ways to Show a Little (or a Lot) of Love

Surprise! The element of surprise and a little creativity can go a long way when it comes to showing and sharing affection. It makes the gift far more memorable than traditional displays of affection (cards, flowers, stale chocolates...). It also gives a clear message to the recipient that they can be creative in return and don't have to be tied to traditional (or pricey) gift-giving cliches.
  1. Use a washable marker to write a note of appreciation or affection on a) the bathroom mirror b) a window or c) the windshield.  Lipstick also works.....
  2. Send a care package via mail to someone's workplace. Plaster the package with stickers and write on it with a bright marker to attract attention.
  3. Decorate the baby's undershirt or diaper with sweet messages using puff paints or markers. This can be a fun way to encourage someone to change the baby's diaper more often.....
  4. Secretly post a love message on someone's back before you send them off for the day. Hint: warn the family in advance so they won't say anything and attach it when giving a good-bye hug.  I've done this successfully several times!  "My wife thinks I'm hot!" worked particularly well.  No one told the Bionic Man that he was wearing that particular post-it note until late in the day.  He couldn't figure out why so many people asked him about his wife that day, or mentioned how adorable his wife was.
  5. Give someone a “heart attack”: cover a door, wall, vehicle, etc. with hearts. (These can be cut out of paper.) Add words (conversation heart style) for a personal touch. This is a fun one if you want to get the whole family involved!  (See video footage below.)
  6. Decorate the bed/bedroom with 100 hearts; each expressing a reason for your love.
  7. Kidnap someone early in the morning and take them out for breakfast in their pajamas.
  8. Purchase or make a gift. Make a treasure hunt to find the gift. (Alternative: let him find you at the end of the treasure hunt.
  9. Make a board game or card game to play and personalize it just for each other. You can use a game you already have and cover the existing game with additions of your own, or you can use poster board, construction paper, etc. to come up with your own version. Here are some suggestions:
    • Family Trivial Pursuit: use questions about family members and ancestors. Where did Grandpa meet Grandma? How long did Mom and Dad date each other before they got engaged? What is sister's favorite flavor of ice cream?
    • Big Daddy (instead of Old Maid): laminate matching pictures of family members, cousins, grandparents, etc. Take a funny picture of Dad and make that the Big Daddy card. Play the game just as you would play Old Maid. This is a great game for children who live far from relatives—it helps them remember faces.
    • Use your imagination to create a fun game to play just as a couple. Anything involving chocolate as game pieces is particularly fun.
  1. Hide notes of love/affection/admiration/thanks in unexpected places where they will find them later (lunchbox, underwear drawer, toolbox, seat of car, etc.).
  2. Make a “trail of love” for someone to follow: scatter small items like rose petals, tissue paper hearts, confetti, Hershey's kisses, etc. to a special or favorite place. Have a treat/gift waiting there.
  3. Singing Telegrams! Change the words to a simple song to suit the occasion and sing over the phone. This is a great last minute idea—no postage or shipping time involved! It is also a fun one for getting the kids involved. Grandparents love it! For a high-class alternative, hire kids from the local high school choir to sing the message.  (We had so much fun with this last night!)
  4. Use the magnetic alphabet letters on your fridge to spell out an expression of love.
  5. Write a sweet (or suggestive!) message in something unexpected: the bar of soap in the shower, the cube of butter on the table, etc.
  6. Surprise him with a “virtual” trip to the place you honeymooned or another location that is special to both of you. (You can get the kids involved in this, they'll love it!) For instance, if you honeymooned in Hawaii, decorate your dining room like a tropical paradise, greet him with a lei, and enjoy fruit smoothies, seafood, etc. If you went out to a certain diner all the time when you were dating, recreate the diner feel, dig up some clothes like you would have worn back in the day, and serve him a hamburger and fries.

    Enjoy some video footage demonstrating 
    the fine art of giving heart attacks.  
    Starring: Endeavor, Justone, Bethany, Bethany's children, infamous commuter vehicles,
    and narrated by me.
    * Please forgive the four short clips; I'm still figuring out video technology!


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