I absolutely love Valentine’s Day.
I don’t love it for chocolates or roses, I love it because it gives me a great excuse to be corny while showering my family with love.
To me, gifts are not important on this day, although I won’t turn away chocolate! I think today is a day to be especially mindful about loving on my family. I love to make my kids and my husband a handmade card noting the unique things I love about them.
Then I spend the day sprinkling it with hearts in every way I can–heart shaped cookie cutters get their work-out today!!
Breakfast: This year I am making heart-shaped whole wheat french toast with chocolate spread and strawberries. This is a very special treat to have chocolate for breakfast in my house. And I don’t complain to eat every single scrap left 🙂 If you don’t like french toast, try heart-shaped toast or pancakes. Or keep it simple and swirl in chocolate chips and strawberry jam into oatmeal.
Lunch: For lunch I always send the kids a sandwich shaped in a heart, or make a heart on top their sandwich made with strawberries and I try to include sides that are pink or red like red pepper strips, strawberries, yogurt with raspberry all-fruit, or cherry tomatoes. On this special day, I am sure to write a little love note and a put in a special treat–a cookie,a chocolate or a strip of stickers…you get the idea. I do the same for my husband. I am pretty sure he hides his lunch from his co-workers so not to be harassed about his heart-shaped pb and j 🙂 This picture shows the kids lunch last year–a cream cheese and strawberry jam sandwich with heat shaped cucumbers and red peppers with a fishy valentine–my kids had been begging for Goldfish crackers–something I typically don’t buy for them.
Snack: Some years we keep it simple and just do sugar cookies with sprinkles. One of my favorite things to do is make homemade hot pretzels in the shape of hearts. It is a fun project for the kids and is a bit better than a sugary treat.
Dinner: I have an old stand-by: Spaghetti and Meatballs, but not just any spaghetti and meatballs–my meatballs are shaped as hearts before baked. I also make bread sticks from homemade dough (or use store bought pizza dough) and shape as hearts. We have red wine vinaigrette on our salad and I blend 1 tablespoon of strawberry all-fruit into 3 cups of milk to give it a nice pink hue, without processed strawberry syrup. I don’t have a good picture of the dinner–so I posted another lunch I made one year that would make a fabulous dinner option as well–let the kids shape pizza dough in heart and top as they desire. Serve with watermelon slices that have been cut out as hearts with cookie cutters.
We finish the meal with chocolate covered strawberries. I figure the dark chocolate and strawberries are full of anti-oxidants so they balance out the indulgences we have had through the day:) (And I promise I will share my HEALTHY eating tips soon–snow days and holidays need celebrated and made special in my mind. We aren’t eating processed junk, just some delicious whole-food treats–everything in moderation–this week has just been a bit more indulgent than most!!!)
I hope my corny food ideas inspire you to try out making your meals an expression of love today. Get your kids involved and and be sure to squeeze on them while they are helping. And for some great simple ideas to show love to your family head over to this great post at I-MOM