When Valentine's Day rolls around, I'm always on the lookout for easy and fun treats for my kids to make to accompany their Valentine's cards, and for playdate activities, too. This sweet treat is not only fun for the kids to make, but tastes delicious too. The salty, savory taste of the pretzel goes really well with the rich chocolate, and you can decorate and garnish them any way you like. These choocolate-dipped pretzels look beautiful when wrapped in cellophane bags and tied with a ribbon, and make perfect gifts not only for Valentine's Day, but for any occasion.
This is what you need:
1 bag of pretzel rods
1 12-ounce bag of dark, milk, or white chocolate chips
Always on the lookout for fun and easy crafts to make, I loved these cute little Valentine's Day heart people that my daughter made in her kindergarten class. My daughter, who takes after me in the craft department, spent an afternoon making an army of these little guys, who she called "heart buddies," to decorate our house for Valentine's Day.
They're easy and fun to make. If you have a heart-shaped cookie cutter, you can trace around it to make your heart shape. If not, you can cut them by hand; it's not hard to do.
My kids always like to go to the library and check out a big stack of books that relate to the current holiday or season. Valentine's Day of course is no exception, so here are some of our choices for great kids' books to read this week. Find them at your local library or bookstore.
Day It Rained Hearts, by Felicia Bond
One day it rains hearts in a most unusual downpour! Fortunately, Cornelia Augusta is there to catch them. Each heart is special in its own way, and Cornelia Augusta knows exactly who to send them to. For ages 4 and up.
Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch, by Eileen Spinelli
One winter day, the postman delivers a mysterious package with a big pink bow to lonely Mr. Hatch. "Somebody loves you," the accompanying note says. Mr. Hatch wonders, who that somebody could be, and eventually discovers who his secret admirer is, much to his surprise! For ages 3 and up.
Plant a Kiss, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Little Miss plants a kiss, and her one small act of love blooms into something bigger and more dazzling than she could have ever imagined in this story about life, kindness, and giving.
The Biggest Kiss, by Joanna Walsh From tiny ants to enormous elephants, there’s a kiss for everyone in this warm and cozy feel-good book. Find out if worms kiss underground, with the soil all around, or if fish kiss with a splash and a splish. With an irresistible text that begs to be read aloud and adorable illustrations, parents and grandparents will love sharing this collection of affection with the youngest of readers. For ages 4 and up.
Get ready for musical family fun at this weekend's Marin Symphony Family Concert, taking place on Sunday, February 10, at 3 pm in the Marin Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium at Marin Center in San Rafael. This year's program presents themes of courage, love and a special Valentine celebration.
San Domenico Alumni viola virtuoso Alexandra Simpson is the guest artist. Music from the hit movie Brave, by Patrick Doyle, is the climax of the concert. The concert is hosted by KDFC radio's Hoyt Smith.
Following the Family Concert, Marin Symphony Youth Orchestra musicians assist aspiring young artists at the traditional Instrument Petting Zoo, sponsored by the Magic Flute, where children are encouraged to try out an instrument on their own.
My kids always love to make their own unique valentines to give to friends and classmates. This butterfly-shaped card holds either a candy stick or a pencil (especially handy when your child has a teacher who discourages giving candy away in class), and above all is easy to make and decorate.
My daughter cut out the butterfly shape with kid-safe scissors, and decorated the card with foam stickers. Of course you could embellish yours with whatever you like: crayons, markers, paint, or whatever you happen to have in your crafts bin.
Creating these beautiful custom crayons is a project I've wanted to try for a long time, and we finally got a chance to make these this past weekend. The results really exceeded our expectations!
These crayons look amazing and professional and are so easy to make. Plus, if you have kids, you probably have the materials to make them lying around the house already. These make a fun and pretty gift for Valentine's Day, as well as neat party favors. They even look great as decorations around the house.
To make these, the first thing you need to do is round up all the old crayons in your house. If you're like us, this should not be very difficult. Of course you can also go out and buy a box of crayons to make this craft, since they're not that expensive. (Once you make a batch of these, you'll find that you're always careful to bring home the leftover crayons that restaurants give you with the kids' menu.)
Marin Mommies presents a guest article by Marin mom and writer Gabrielle Cullen.
Ahhh, the holiday of love. As a mom or dad, it’s fantastic to share sweets with the sweet on Valentine’s Day. What better, or tastier way to celebrate Cupid’s big day than by sitting down to a pile of tasty treats and lathering them up with all the trimmings? Treat the kiddos in a big way this year and check out these super cool cookie events sure to put on smiles from ear to ear. And maybe even some frosting on the nose.
Cake Art Supplies, the mother of all frosting joints, will be hosting a super awesome class with a fantastic selection of toppings for cupcakes and edible love letters on Saturday, February 8 from 10:30 am–noon, for $40. Youths will be able to decorate to their hearts content, with delicious and delightful trimmings, including candy hearts, sparkly sprinkles and more. Although kids 8 and over can be left to their own imaginations, this a perfect way to spend a weekend day with the family. The shop is located at 1512 Fifth Avenue in San Rafael. Give Susan a call at (415) 456-7773 to register.
We always love to make our own greeting cards for birthdays and holiday, and Valentine’s Day is of course no exception. This year we created cute and classy heart cards using homemade stamps cut out from potatoes. Yes that’s right: a regular old russet potato!
This potato print card project is really easy and fun, and the kids think it’s neat that they’re using something they usually eat for dinner to create a craft.