V-day Hacks to Keep Cupid & Classmates Happy

It’s almost time. To tap into the depth of your soul. To unleash unconditional love from that happy heart of yours. To elbow your way through 800 other parents shopping the isles of Target.

‘Sponge Bob or Mickey Mouse?! Just pick one already!!!’

Valentine’s Day is just a quick shot of that fat angel’s arrow around the corner. And if you’re like most of us, it’s slim pickings. Like double zero, high school slim.

But before you grab the first thing your hand hits, here are a few last minute ideas to earn some extra love. Bonus points: they are allergy-free.

Our friendship is on point. Pencils, glitter pens or even a small pack of crayons are an easy, in-stock way to send a functional and friendly note. I pre-printed the saying on labels so my son’s little hands could easily assemble all 25. Even though he abandoned post after putting together three of them.


Stuck on you. Kids love stickers. Just look down when you walk across my hand-distressed wood floors. My kids stick them everywhere. Write a quick note on the back of a single sheet of stickers and boom, you’ve got an appealing prize.

Here’s to your heart! This saying can be written with permanent marker on the side of any juice box. If you really want to get creative, cut out hearts with the saying and glue stick them to the container. You can use leftovers in your kid’s lunch.

You brighten my day. Whenever I need to boost my creative juices I hit up the Target Dollar Bin. It. Never. Fails. My two-point-five year old is in a severe allergy class. So, I had to find something that wasn’t a choking hazard, and was peanut and seed-free. These shades should put a smile on their little faces.

Being a mom of three, I didn’t always please that chubby cherub with my V-day selections. The first year my son and I put together these adorable mailboxes. They were so big, they broke the kids’ handmade Valentine’s Day bags.

Today I’m a room mom for the third year, so I can add these don’ts to the list (pretty please):

Don’t put individual names on your hand-outs. Just have your kid sign his/her name.

Don’t do different boy and girl cards or treats. It just takes your kid longer to hand them out and they miss the party.

Don’t go overboard. I struggle with this one because I make a living as a marketing consultant. My kids are six and younger. Sometimes my over-the-top ideas break child labor laws.

Keep it simple. Because there’s always next year. And if your kids are anything like mine, they’ll forget your awesome idea before they finish their first bag of sweethearts.

What other heart-warming ideas do you have on tap this Valentine’s Day?

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(Non) Stay-at-home mama raising my three screaming cubs while restoring our 35-acres of wilderness just outside of Cleveland. Copywriter, sheep herder and fixer upper. I live in muck boots, jeans and wear dangling toddlers as accessories.

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