Valentine’s Day: a non-DIYer’s nightmare

I am not what one would call a DIY-er. (Is that what they’re called? I am so not a DIY-er that I’m not even sure of the terminology.) Recently a friend of mine was talking about how she “whipstitched” one of her husband’s ties to make it appropriately skinny for an 80s costume party, and I about short-circuited just listening to her. I can’t even make a decent Lego cake.

god, that's pathetic.

So I tend to regard Valentine’s Day with a fair bit of foresight and dread. Each year my kids come home with fancier handmade creations from their classmates, names calligraphied in fondant on heart-shaped butter cookies, bags full of more candy and more bubbles and more crap, and the stakes get upped again. Between my three children, I am responsible for 55 valentines. Heaven forbid I would ever have to actually MAKE them. So I ordered my Current catalog assortment weeks ago.

February 8th came. No valentines. I called Current. “Oh, we’re sold out of everything you ordered,” they said. “Your order was not able to be filled.” I rushed to the drugstore, heart in throat. All that was left were puppy and kitty valentines, reading “I Ruv You Rots,” which would not do for a nine-year-old boy. They WOULD. NOT. DO.

And so 2012 became the Year of Homemade Valentines chez nous. And I have to say I’m darn proud of what we figured out. Here is Maggie’s creation:

These colorful hearts are fashioned from the four enormous finger paintings Maggie had brought home from nursery school in the last week to sit on the kitchen counter until it felt okay to throw the out when she wasn’t looking. Now they’ve been repurposed! No two are alike! And she signed them all herself.

Connor the third-grader went the unsentimental route:

I mean, it’s a smiling Cyclops, but he would as soon rip you to shreds with those claws as look at you. Not sure what the chain link necklace is about. That may be an actual human heart hanging from it that he’s just ripped out of his latest victim. Happy Valentine’s Day!

And then there’s my first-grader, Seamus. If everyone’s ziggin’, he’s sure to zag. He decided to ignore the mushy stuff entirely and give everyone a much more sensible and proud-American greeting:

Sam the Eagle would be so proud of him.

I am proud to say we did all 55 valentines in about half an hour with nothing but a glue stick, a scissors, a color copier, and Google Image Search. Okay, I won’t be becoming a craft blogger anytime soon. But they’re done. And now that my friend Marketing Mama┬áhas pointed out to her readers how sad the Valentines candy cavalcade can be for children with food allergies, I’m not taping lollipops or frosted cookies to them, either. And I’m even feeling like a better mother for it. Happy Good Enough Valentine’s Day!

How are you celebrating Good-Enough-Valentine’s Day at your house?

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