Tuesday, February 8, 2011

XOXO for Valentine's Day

XOXO for Valentine's Day

So what are you hoping to get this Valentine's Day?  Here are some lovely ideas of things that I would love to get, and things I plan on giving.  Maybe this will inspire you to share the love this Valentine's Day!

Most of us love receiving flowers from our sweetie, but we don't want the ones that are sitting right up front of the grocery store on Valentine's Day.  You know the ones, that are overpriced and picked over by the time your hubby remembers to pick some up.  I am a sucker for pink roses.  I especially love these arrangements.  Love the pink marble roses, how beautiful are they.  I love that they are placed in the gold and white damask boxes.  What a great and easy idea!  I also love the roses that are arranged in the shape of a heart.  Major bonus points there.  

Maybe flowers aren't the way to your heart.  How about this arrangement of strawberries dipped in white chocolate?  YUMMO!  I actually prefer white chocolate over dark chocolate, not the norm I realize.  You could share this beautiful and yummy arrangement with your special someone, or make this up for your kids!

Now down to business, sugary sweets.  I love making shaped shortbread cookies during each different holiday season.  My kids and I have a tradition of making them and sharing them with family and friends.  I also found this website that makes these tattoo heart shaped cookies.  Super fun.  whippedbakeshop.com

Here are the cookies that I like to make with my kids and here is the recipe.
I usually double the recipe so that we have plenty to share!
Create-A-Shape sugar cookies
1/2 cup shortening
1/4 cup of unsalted butter at room temp
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs at room temperature
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
In a large bowl combine the shortening, butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla.
Then in separate bowl sift together the dry ingredients.
Then mix all the ingredients together until well mixed.  Chill the ingredients for 1 hour
Watch a short movie together :)  Or work on handmade valentines
Preheat oven to 350*
On a lightly floured surface roll out dough to about 1/4 thickness.  If you want to make the cookies on a stick they need to be about 1/2 thick.  Cut dough in your desired shape, and place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 mins or until a light golden brown.  These cookies are so good, you are going to want to eat them before you ice them.
Cookie Icing
2 cups of confectioners/powder sugar
3 tablespoons of water
2 tablespoons of light corn syrup
In a bowl mix all three ingredients, if it appears to thick add a drop of water until icing thins out.  
You can mix food coloring to the icing to add to the design.
The icing will harden up after about 6-8 hours.
Hope you will try making these cookies, they are really yummy and so much better then the store bought sugar cookies!
It's all about making the memories, I always say!

Here are the cookies on a stick that I love to make.
Nice gift for the teachers.

Next are some fun ideas for handmade valentines...

I think this Martha Stewart idea would be great to send to grandparents who live out of town!
Collect and pass out vintage valentines.  You can find these at antique stores or flea markets, just make a copy of your original and pass them out to loved ones.  I love reading all the messages that are on the back of vintage cards.  You can always find one signed, Love Susie, or Love Mary Sue.  Wonder what the next generation will think about our valentine cards?

One of my favorite places to shop online for digi art is twopeasinabucket.com  They have a wonderful selection of digi art which you purchase and download to your computer.  The options are truly endless. Here are a few of my favorites that they have available.  Plus they are 25% off.  This is a fun and inexpensive way to create your own person valentine cards!
Here are some cute tags you can make using your digi art download.

I love this last one.  I ordered it and I am going to create my own valentines, and let my kids use it to create their own.  
Here is one of the valentines that I came up with using the Love Actually kit and a picture of two of my boys!  It was really easy to create!
So I hope this Valentine's Day you receive something that you love, and that you share your love with others.  Send me pics of your handmade valentine's, I would love to see them!