I am not a Pinterest person and I’m not excessively crafty. However, for some reason I’ve always insisted the kids make their own valentines. Over the years we’ve collected a nice assortment of pink and red card stock, a variety of heart stickers, glitter and valentine stamps. I keep the stash away from the normal craft supplies and each February I drag it out and we make class valentines.
The past few years J has not been very enthused about the project. Instead of making glittery creations he and I look for printable valentines. I print them on that valentine card stock (seriously I think I bought a stash of 300 pieces 8 years ago and we’re still using it) and he cuts them out… sometimes colors them himself. So yesterday I found a few sites with printables that weren’t remotely mushy. When he came home from school I told him that we needed to save some time to make this year’s valentines. Here’s how the conversation went:
J: Do I have to make valentines?
Me: No, you don’t.
Me: Really. If you don’t want to hand out valentines at the party it’s okay. Just know that you’ll probably be the only one not handing out a valentine. If that doesn’t bother you, it’s okay not to do it.
We went through the rest of our evening. Complained about homework… ate a good dinner… complained about homework some more… Before he got ready for bed I asked him one more time: “You’re sure you don’t want to hand out valentines? There’s still time for me to print some if you’ve changed your mind.”
J: Okay I’ve been thinking and there’s something I want to ask you about that. Do you mean to tell me that for all of my life valentines have not been mandatory??
Me: Valentines are never mandatory buddy.
J: You’re sure I’m not going to get in trouble with the teacher? Because I’m pretty sure that every year they are MANDATORY.
Me: How will you get in trouble? There’s no grade for valentines. She’s not going to make you miss part of recess. What could possibly happen? IF she asks where your valentines are. Tell her the truth – you didn’t want to hand them out.
J: Okay then. That’s what I’m going to do.
It’s 7am and I haven’t asked that one last time. I could still scramble and print some if needed. There’s no candy to go along with them but we don’t hand out candy every year anyway (the amount of candy that gets distributed at an elementary valentines party astonishes me). We’ll see if he has a last minute change of heart.
I have helped kids make valentines for 12 years… I should probably be sad that this phase is over. Instead, I’m just wondering what to do with this stack of pink and red card stock.