This Valentine's Day, encourage kids to show sweet sentiments with tokens of affection that go beyond the store-bought card. Most of the projects require only a bit of cutting and some gluing; all can be decorated to their heart's desire. Crayons, rubber stamps, ribbons, and pretty pictures cut from magazines or taken from scrap-art catalogs are just a few of the items kids can put to use. In no time, they'll have an array of adorable valentines whose messages come straight from the heart.
Fill flattened cupcake liners with candy for a treat you won't have to bake. The liners' pleats nicely frame scrap-art pictures or paper hearts (we used scalloping scissors to trim some). A craft punch or paper flowers can make cute borders.
1. Flatten two paper cupcake liners. Place one liner face up, and lay the other face down on top of it.
2. Lift the edge, and apply glue along a short section. Press to attach; let dry. Continue gluing in sections, leaving the last section open. Fill with candy; seal opening with glue.
3. Cut out heart or other shape from construction paper; add cut-out images, ribbons, or paper or fabric flowers, and write or stamp a note. Glue onto center.
With just a little TLC, colorful hearts flourish as the petals of a new flower variety --one with a lollipop center and stem.
1. Use card stock to make a half-heart template about 3 inches high and 1 1/4 inches wide. Fold a 12-by-3 1/2-inch piece of construction paper in half vertically, and trace four half-hearts along the fold.
2. Cut out hearts; unfold.
3. Stack hearts; punch a hole 1/4 inch up from bottom. Position petals to form a flower, making sure holes line up. Secure by applying glue around holes; let dry. Write name on a petal. Insert lollipop.