For Valentine’s Day instead of giving out ready-made Valentine’s Day cards I like to combine my kids love of being creative with building their fine motor skills. When Johnny was 3, one of the Valentine’s Day projects at Preschool was to use a pastry paper doily, shiny stickers, glue and cut out hearts to make a gift for Mommy and Daddy. He loved all the textures and putting the colourful project together and getting messy hands. Now he’s 7 and he still loves picking up pretty paper doiles and feeling it in his hands and rubbing his fingers over it. He likes how lovely it looks and decided that the girls at school would like a Valentine that incorporated it. I just had to convince him that even though he’s a boy the other boys in his class might not appreciate the prettiness of the doily but that’s okay. His little sister decided to make some pretty ones for all of her teachers at school too.
Later that day when I was at the Parent/Teacher conferences one of the teachers that sometimes helps out in the kindergarten rooms came quickly down the hall and said,
“Did your kids make that beautiful Valentine for me?”
I saw other parents who were hovering in the hallway waiting their turns to see teachers look at us with interest. I answered cheekily,
“I think my answer should be yes.”
I know this teacher from helping me in big school board meetings having to do with Johnny’s placement status so we have a history.
“The beautiful pretty hand frilly paper ones….your daughter made me one right? It was so lovely and from the heart. The older kids made “love pins” to sell to raise money for the school’s charity project but when I looked at your daughter’s Valentine it WAS love. Teachers were showing off what your son and daughter made for them and each one was different and special so it was like a little piece of them. I wanted you to know that I am not taking it home but hanging it by my desk so when ever I need a little “pick me up” I can just look at it and remember it came from her heart.”
Who knew that a simple little craft project done by little hands could become something more and in the end come right back to me and put a smile on my face.