Messy Kid Fun: Handmade Valentines

Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old
Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old

I am thinking of starting a feature on this blog: recurring posts on the subject of how to include young children in gardening, and cooking, and in making things. Why?  Because it’s messy, and it’s fun, and practice makes, well if not perfect than at least… learning and growing in skills and confidence?  I am thinking of calling it the Messy Fun feature, with posts on messy crafts, messy gardening, & messy cooking.  Messy laundry, messy cleaning, messy dressing, the list could go on and on.

Today, we made Valentines for grandparents, for cousins, for babysitters, and a few others. Simple ingredients:  blunt nosed scissors for the toddler and for me, roller ball glue, construction paper, and washable children’s paint, and some brushes. Also, if you will be mailing these, some letter size mailing envelopes.  I cut out large hearts and small hearts, and outlined his hands on some paper to use as a template to cut out more.  I asked him to paint on the heart shapes, and showed him how to stick hearts in the paint, and use the glue.  Soon, paint was everywhere…  but no worries, it’s washable!  Not sure about fabrics, but the washable paint wiped right off the wooden table. And the wooden floor…

Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old
Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old
Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old
Messy Kid Fun: handmade valentines with a two and a half year old

I thought it was neat that if I positioned the cut-out hands just so, the thumbs and forefingers formed a sort of heart.

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We made a baker’s dozen over two sessions, and we will be mailing them to the lucky recipients on Monday, so that they arrive in time for Valentine’s Day.  It was definitely messy, and a whole lot of fun!

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7 thoughts on “Messy Kid Fun: Handmade Valentines

  1. Margit Van Schaick

    Love your idea about including a feature about toddler learning/creative projects! And, these Valentines are so adorable! This kind of fun is priceless–that’s how memories are made. The motif of a heart made by connecting the thumb and second finger of each hand is so wonderful. It reminds me of your photo of flamingoes–would love to see you post it!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love how these Valentines turned out. So sweet. I feel I need to learn to let-go a little when it comes to including the kids in activities, be they in the garden, in the kitchen, wherever. I am ashamed to admit that sometimes I get too caught up in how the final product will look/perform instead of focusing on the process and enjoying the kids enjoying the activity, you know? Will try to channel some of your zen 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it definitely can be challenging, and sometimes more work than if we just did it ourselves. For example, we have our son help make pancakes: we pre-measure the amount of flour, then give him the cup of flour and ask him to dump it in the bowl. We ask for help stirring, but there’s pre-planning in the measuring, and in having all ingredients and the kitchen sink close at hand before we start so that we can stay next to him and always have an eye out for what he can help with and what he needs to be steered away from… easier and faster to do go it alone, but we want him to enjoy learning and enjoy actually doing things rather than having all done for him.

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  3. Pingback: Valentine Hand-made Craft Ideas – A Top Ten Tuesday List – Good Woman

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