We are in full countdown mode to Valentine’s Day. I can’t get enough of advent activities and counting down, so we are doing it for every holiday we can! Plus, in the spirit of decorating early and making special days last longer, doing a lot of little things for a longer period of time appeals to me more than doing a “big” thing on just one day. Thus, I’ve got two countdowns going – one for my Honey and one for Pen Elaine.
First, my Honey absolutely loves candy…more than any kid, so a candy countdown seemed perfect. There are a million blogs and Pins listing cute sayings to go with various candies, so I used a couple sources, mainly from this stock of Hubby candy quotes. From the ideas, I typed them up in a Word document myself, making them with cute fonts placed inside pink square shapes (2 columns), and printed them out myself. Then, I just quickly cut out each square and used double-sided tape to attach them to the candy.
Starting on February 1st, I place one candy in a spot he will find during the day (e.g., by coffee maker, inside sock drawer, etc.) or I put it in his lunch box on weekdays, since I pack his lunch. They make the whole 2 weeks of February, leading up to Valentine’s day, so much “sweeter!”
Now, for my toddler’s Valentine’s countdown, I used the plan and free printables from SimplyHomeBlog. She came up with a precious plan for the 14-16 days preceding Valentine’s day, to learn and think about the attributes of God’s love that are spelled out in 1 Corinthians 13. So, each day has a paper in the shape of a candy heart with part of “the love chapter” on it, as well as a small paper with a corresponding Scripture, discussion question/starter, and activity idea…amazing, right? All in one place on the free printable! We hang our printed candy hearts up on a strand of twine, hanging like a banner in the kitchen. I printed my candy heart cutouts on cardstock, and the discussion paper I printed on normal paper but laminated them for protection. SimplyHomeBlog also recommends including candy to make learning God’s Word and everything sweeter, so I include 2 candy hearts with our daily printables, one for Pen Elaine and one for her to give to her daddy 🙂 I enjoy trying to match the color of the candies with the color of the paper candy heart for each day, ha. The last thing included in our daily countdown container is a love note for Pen Elaine – I found this idea on Pinterest, so each day I include a paper heart on which I write something that we love about Pen Elaine, such as something she does or something we love doing with her. Now, if everything looked cutesy, I would put all four of these items in a mason jar or something, but my kid is 2-and-a-half, so I put it all in a cleaned-out yogurt tub (that’s it hiding behind the “patience” discussion card in the photo below)…but that excites just as much anticipation and joy when Pen Elaine comes into breakfast and sees her “Valentine’s activity” at her place on the table! Now, on days we have extra time and extra momentum at breakfast, we try to say all the parts of the love chapter that we’ve read so far…in hopes of memorization! We are loving this activity and will definitely try making this a tradition!