Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Weekend to Warm the Heart

On Friday, all the school kids came home with a class list in their back backs. The reason—as we head into mid February—is obvious. The teachers want to give your grandchild a head start on pre-addressing their valentines for Tuesday, the 14th.  TOP NANA’S crafting table runneth over with pink and red stickers, faux white lace and construction paper in assorted sweet berry colors. The finished product is pictured with this post. Yes sir, with some Elmer glue and paper plates, we made Valentines that double as wall hangings; look closely and you can divine a heart-shaped lollipop taped to the center! While the kids pasted and cut with safety scissors, Nana got busy pre-heating the oven and whipping up a cake batter for Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting.    

This cake is something I make every other Valentine’s Day! Last year, I made what I billed then as The Most Obvious and Glorious of Valentine’s Day Cake. You can click the link to see the cute lady bug craft and see the recipe for a tried and true red velvet cake, handily referred to as Valentine’s Day Cake.

If you want to do the wall hanging Valentines this year, you will need:

Plain white paper plates
Puffy Valentine’s Day stickers that either sparkle or are raised (raid a Target to find some!)
Purple & Pink construction paper
White Ribbon
Lollipops, preferably heart shaped


1. Cut around one paper plate, setting aside its indented edges as your Valentine heart’s lace. Shaping said edges around the heart is fun—it’s also relaxing as long as the smell of baking cake is wafting through the kitchen.
2. Fold the paper plate a bit at the top and pierce a hole, big enough to string a thick white ribbon through it.
3. Cut 1 big circle and 1 small bow shape out of the purple construction paper. Glue the purple circle to the center of the paper plate. Glue the bow cut-out to the top of the ribbon you’ve strung through the hole.
4. Cut a heart out of the pink construction paper and place it over the purple circle; you’ll want the heart to be smaller than the circle, so the purple background shows.
5. Tape a lollipop to the center of the heart
6. Use the indented edges from the other discarded paper plate to adorn the edges of the pink heart and use stickers at your discretion to embellish your Valentine!

As you can see I had fun letting small hands do the lion’s share of the work here. Safety scissors worked just fine. If you’re running short on time and cooking for a way to achieve strawberry cake from an easy mix, Pillsbury makes a fine substitute in Moist Supreme Strawberry Premium Cake Mix. The box suggests a pink frosting. Whatever floats your swan-shaped boat this winter holiday, everyone. May the rest of the year be filled with fun crafts; to do one that’s also romantic, click this message in the bottle link to see the one I can’t wait to try with my grandkids!

I wish you all a happy Valentine’s Day worthy of Chet Baker’s slow and lovely song. When you eat TOP NANA’s cake, keep his lyric in mind, “each day is Valentine’s Day!” May they all be yummy!

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