¡Que viva el amor y la amistad! Every year, my son and I look forward to Valentine’s Day because it’s an opportunity to show those we love how much they mean to us. The problem is that, as a mom, I always found myself at a loss for sweet and affordable activities that were engaging for my little boy. Seriously, the struggle was real! It was hard finding unique, personalized gift ideas for my son to give to his teacher, nana, abuelito, and tías.
Today, I’m sharing with you a sweet and affordable Valentine’s Day activity that we’ve been doing since he was a toddler. We call it Siete Palabritas Lindas (Seven Sweet Words/Thoughts), and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.
Activity: Siete Palabritas Lindas (Seven Sweet Words/Thoughts)
Pro Tip: Before doing this activity, watch a movie like Aladdin (Disney+) or Tall Girl (Netflix) with your kiddo so that your family gets into the Valentine’s Day spirit. When they’re little, it’s terrific to have these special cuddling moments!
- Reuse a small container and lid (this can be a mason jar, a brown box, or any container of your choice)
- 8.5” x 11” paper (you can use white, pink, red, or whatever is your kids favorite color)
- Color pencils, color crayons, or Paper Mate Flair Felt pens
- Glitter OR Magazine Cutouts
Once you’ve gathered your preferred material, you’re ready to go!
- Step 1: Select your gift recipient
My son would always make one for his teacher, tias, nana, abuelito, and his cousins.
- Step 2: Decorate your recycled container
Now, thinking of the selected gift recipient, personalize. First, take your recycled box and transform it by covering the outside layer with your artistic flair. When my son was younger, we kept it simple and just covered the box with his favorite stickers. He had fun placing them where he liked best and was thoughtful about what sticker he has chosen for each person on his Valentine’s Day list. It was adorable to see!
If you have older kids, you can get a little messier and have them cover the outside of the container with glue and then roll it in their favorite glitter colors. This can definitely get messy, so make sure you factor time for cleanup. Also, if you opt for glitter, have a little warning for the recipient as they may not love glitter as much as your kiddo does! Instead of glitter, your kid can also cut out favorite images from a magazine and glue them around the container.
- Step 3: Cut your 8.5” x 11” paper into smaller pieces.
Once our container is decorated, place it on a piece of paper and wait for it to dry. If you used stickers, there’s no wait time! Next, we cut the 8.5” x 11” paper you selected into 7 long pieces. You can opt for heart shapes, rectangle shapes, stars, or anything your kid prefers. My son just liked to keep it simple, so we did 7 long pieces of paper. Whatever shape you decide on, just make sure the pieces are big enough for your little one to write or draw something sweet on the piece of paper.
- Step 4: Seven Sweet Words/Thoughts
On the pieces of paper you’ve cut, write a kind word or a short sentence about the person. Depending on the age of your child, they can also insert a small doodle on the piece of paper, and you can help them by writing what they meant.
It’s really a special moment to take the time to sit with your child and think of those seven loving words about the person. I recommend keeping it short yet personalize. Some ideas:
- Nana, I love when you cook pozole on Sundays for the family.
- Abuelito, I love how you sing your favorite songs at family parties.
- Mom, thank you for spending time with me even when you’re tired after a long day.
- Teacher, thank you for making everyone in our classroom feel special by taking the time to help us when we don’t understand something.
- Tía, I love how always tell me funny stories.
The person will really appreciate this personalized gift. Each time they read one of the little pieces of paper, they’ll be reminded of how special they are to you.