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Valentine Envelopes

Some people think that Valentine's Day is just another holiday that you have to buy your significant other flowers and chocolate. Just another day you have to spend money. I on the other hand, have an entirely different take on the holiday. Since I one was a little girl, I have LOVED Valentine's Day! I loved making a Valentine's box and taking it to school, making Valentines for each person in my class and passing them out. I loved coming home and reading each and every one of my cards.


I grew up with romance in my home. My father was a wonderful example of this. Every year, at least a week before Valentine's Day, my Dad would start leaving notes, Valentines, flowers, cards, etc. around for my Mom to find. It was exciting for all five of us kids to see what he had planned next. I remember thinking how much I wanted that in my own marriage when I grew up. I never wondered if my Dad loved my Mom. I could tell by the selfless acts of kindness and the thoughtfulness he put into her gifts each year. They were never expensive, we never had a lot of money, that wasn't the point. It was the time and effort that went into the holiday that made it special.

I had continued this tradition into my adult life. Each year a week or more before Valentine's Day, I would follow in my Father's footsteps and begin leaving notes, treats and little gifts around for my girls to find. This was a tradition I looked forward to. I saw it as a time to show my daughters how much they meant to me. I wanted them to know that they were loved and cared about.

In a blended family, it's sometimes a difficult challenge to build loving relationships. I thought about how I could increase love and grow the bonds within our family. Valentine's Day seemed like the perfect opportunity. While out shopping at Target one day, I happened upon a cute felt envelope in the dollar section.


It got my creativity going. But, as the dollar section goes so often, there was only one. So I bought it and hurried off to the craft store to create my own version of 8 more. Using 2 1/2 pieces of felt, a sewing machine, some Velcro, ribbon, Rick-rack and a glue gun, I made each person their own envelope.


If you want to start this tradition with your family and you don't want to put the time and effort into making envelopes, (I have seen some in the dollar section at Target again this year). You can always have each person decorate Manila envelopes. They are cheap, easy, and get the job done just as well!


I sat down with my family. I explained my usual Valentine tradition and told them how this year it was expanding! Instead of Mom doing all the work, each person was going to be able to join in the fun and do something for every person in our family. It didn't have to be every day. But it did have to be for each person and it had to be more than once. They could write a note, make a card or a valentine, draw a picture, make them a gift, buy them a gift, make or buy them a treat...and leave it in their envelope for them to find during the week. We talked about other possibilities and made a list together to hang on the fridge. Some of the things included:

Give them a hug
Pay them a compliment
Do their chore
Make their bed
Have patience
Speaking kindly
Don't criticize
Don't tease
Say I love you
Help
Share
If you're mad, write something you like about the person and put it in the envelope for them to read

This has worked out well and it is a tradition we have continued for as many years as we have been a family. Yesterday I got out the envelopes and my 10 year old asked eagerly, when are we starting the Valentine envelopes. I told her that night and she began jumping up and down and cheering!

It's fun to see what each person comes up with to put in the envelopes.






Even my 21 month old understands and is excited to make a simple heart and put them in the envelope for each person to find.


Here are a few simple Valentines we have used.












The dollar store is a fun place to go for easy cheap gifts to put in envelopes. Or you can chose to not spend any money and focus simply on service, notes and making things for each other. No matter what, I hope that this tradition helps to bring feeling of love and unity into your family as it has done with ours.