Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thrifty Thursday: Won't You Be My Valentine?

"In this small sign I find a way to greet my Valentine today."

I did it.

I actually made all my Valentine Card's this year.

Well, Zane made 21 of them. But just like Shake 'n Bake, "I helped!".

It was my goal to avoid purchasing any boxes of meaningless and thoughtless Hannah Montana, or Spongebob, or Transformer Valentine's greetings this year. I probably just offended a ton of you. Sorry. Kind of.

Moms R Us helped out my goal by sponsoring a card-making event this past Monday. I love this event. Everyone pitched in by bringing paper, stamps, stickers, and scissors - although all of us forgot about glue. So, GASP!, we shared. Somehow, everyone was able to make their cards with 2 glue sticks being passed from creative Mom to creative Mom. Within an hour I had successfully crafted 4 hand-made Valentine's cards, and was blessed by the fellowship with the ladies.

Three of the cards are for George, Harper, and Zane, of course.

The 4th? For me. I made myself a Valentine's Day card from the big "J" Himself.

On the front, in has hearts falling from the sky and the word "trust". Inside, He wrote, "My love endures forever." It is signed, heart sticker, J. Translation: Love, Jesus - he's so hip.

Card-fest continued with a visit to Tom Thumb, quite possibly the most disorganized craft store ever, and yet one of those places unique to Evanston that I will miss so deeply when we move. For while it may seem a scattered mess, I never cease to be inspired when I visit. Zane and I had a list: a pack of white construction paper, plastic to make a stencil, a sponge brush, and some stickers.

We headed home and began our project. Zane successfully made 14 painted cards for his classmates, using the construction paper, a heart stencil that we made, and red paint we already owned. He stenciled the heart on the front of the card, placed a sticker in each one, and then signed off on them with his signature "Z". Having finished cards for his class, he continued on, making one for me, Harper, George, his 3 teachers, and the school's administrative assistant who gives him a lollipop everyday - and goes the extra mile by digging through the bag of Dum-Dum's in order to find him the root beer one's that he adores the most.

Sidebar: at school, when asked, "How do we show our love to others?", Zane answered, "With ancient writing."

This, no doubt, has something to do with Egypt and hieroglyphics, and, well, I don't know. He's Zane.

As for Harper? Well, her teacher is a hit with me. Rather than having the kids bring in the customary HS Musical or Camp Rock cards, she had the kids work on a writing project for a full week. Each day, for homework, Harper had to write a letter to three of her classmates, and then make a card for them out of supplies which were donated by all the families in class. Mrs. M also distributed a list of personality traits and interests about each child in the class, (all the kids helped with developing this list), so that the letters would actually include an expression of something specific about each classmate. For instance, the class agreed that Harper "loves puppies" and that she is "spunky". Using this description as a starting point, her friend's will write her a Valentine greeting.

Tomorrow, her class will enjoy a quiet festivity, reading their letters, all 20 of them, while munching on a cupcake. Sounds delightful. I hear the cupcakes will be from Tag's. This is turning into a post about Evanston businesses I will miss upon moving.

Last fall, I picked up these adorable plastic heart boxes at the Thrift store for $.50 a piece. So, tomorrow, I will head to the $1.00 store and get Harper and Zane a few small treats. I'll then pack up the boxes with the goodies and the cards and have them waiting for them when they wake on Saturday morning.

Before they go to the dentist. Bad, bad planning on my part.

But hey, my chiropractor gave me flowers today. Perhaps Dr. Fisher has something special planned for all the children who have the privilege of visiting the dentist on Valentine's Day!

The cost of Valentine's this year? Just around $10.00 for 45 personal cards, some containers, and some small treats.

(Although, if you add in the trip to the dentist, that cost increases. Dramatically. So, we'll just leave that amount out of the equation!)

How are you getting your thrift on for this Valentine's Day?

Photo by Chicks57

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