Category Archives: Valentine’s Day

Nutella Wontons with Macerated Strawberries

If you think Nutella is only for Valentine’s Day, you’re really missing out. I did happen to make these Nutella Wontons with macerated strawberries for our Valentine’s Day dinner but they are so delicious and SO easy to make, they shouldn’t be a once-a-year dessert! 

Nutella Wontons with Macerated Strawberries - a perfect dessert you can prep ahead - Events To Celebrate

I frequently purchase wonton wrappers for a salad we use them in  and have left overs I’m not sure what to do with. Then one day I decided to stuff them with Nutella and fry them. It was a very good day indeed. 

There are just a few steps and you’ll be on your way to being ready for your stretchy pants and a chick-flick. 

Nutella Wontons

Nutella Wontons Tutorial - Events To Celebrate

Step #1:

I purchase the large square wonton wraps and cut them in half. Take one half and using a bit of water on your finger, wet the edges of the bottom half and across the middle where the fold will be. 

Step #2:

Scoop a couple of teaspoons of Nutella into the center. I used a Small Cookie Scoop and it helped immensely! It has a release trigger to push the Nutella out of the scoop. Then, when you’re all done (and really, for the sake of your guests you should wait until you’re really all done), you can lick the entire scoop!

Step #3:

Fold one end over the other. Start pressing just around the ball of Nutella pushing out any air bubbles and sealing all of the edges. If you’re making this in advance (up to a full day), you can layer them in a plastic storage container and separate layers with a slightly damp paper towel.

Step #4:

Heat a few inches of vegetable oil in a sauce pan to 275 degrees and then gently place your filled wontons in one at a time. Cook for about 30-60 seconds per side until golden brown. Remove from hot oil and drain on a paper towel lined plate. Allow to cool for a few minutes. Dust generously with powdered sugar through a fine mesh strainer just before serving. 

I cut up a pint of strawberries and added 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar, mixed it together and let it rest in my fridge for about an hour so the juices could mix together and make a delicious bowl of macerated strawberries to spoon over the top. The slight acidity in the strawberries really helps cut through the richness of the wontons. 

I’ve seen some recipes put a banana or strawberry slice inside the wonton with the Nutella, but I really prefer the contrast of the crispy shell and hot, gooey chocolate to the cold fruit. I just think it pairs together perfectly!

Please tell me you won’t save this until Valentine’s Day! Celebrate today!

Valentine’s Day Love Coupons

Love is in the air, can you feel it? It’s almost Valentine’s Day! I’ve made a Love Coupon book for my husband in the past, but to be honest – it never got used. It was totally cute though! I thought these Valentine’s Day Love Coupons for kids would be a better way to go.

Valentine's Day Love Coupons

Each Monday night we have a Family Home Evening (FHE) where we share compliments about each other, sing, pray, have a short gospel devotional and usually have an activity or game that goes with the devotional. I plan to use these for my Valentine’s Day themed Family Home Evening this year. As a special activity, I am going to make a DIY punchboard (like this one I shared on Instagram). Each punch hole will contain one of these cute coupons and everyone will get to take a turn punching to see which Love Coupon they get! 

It seems like each year the kids get bombarded with candy from school. I thought these would be a fun way to promote family togetherness and love without the focus being on the candy. Now, don’t get me wrong – I’ll be baking up a large batch of sugar cookies (using my favorite recipe) to decorate and we will for sure be making another Love Shack like this, but I’m hoping this will be a fun way to show love to my kids without the candy. 

Best of all, I am including them here FREE for you to print and use for your family! I made 6 different options and I hope you comment if you use them and love them!

Click here to print: Valentine’s Day Love Coupons

Rules for use:
– My free printables are for personal use only.
– They may not be modified, sold or used for profit in any way.
– If you feature them or repost them, please give Events to Celebrate proper credit with a link back to this post.

Dr Seuss Thing 1 and Thing 2 Valentine

Dr Seuss Thing 1 and Thing 2 Valentine Free Printable - eventstocelebrate.netWe love the characters Thing 1 & Thing 2 by Dr. Seuss. My daughter watches The Cat in the Hat on a regular basis and often asks me what they are (animals, people, etc.). I still have no idea what to tell her. 🙂 For her little preschool class they are exchanging valentines and I knew I wanted to use our new cotton candy machine and when I thought of the blue cotton candy, it just screamed the hair on Thing 1 & Thing 2!

I’ve included the free printable valentines, they aren’t extra fancy, but they work. You do have to sit and cut each circle out (or delegate that to your kids) and that can be seen as either a tedious task, or a great way to improve your kids scissor skills.

Don’t have a cotton candy machine? They sell it at lots of stores, and they even sell Cotton Candy on Amazon or Oriental Trading

Thing 1 and Thing 2 Valentine

 Thing 1 & 2 Valentines Click to print your own Thing 1 & 2 Valentines

This idea would also be a great party favor at a Thing 1 & Thing 2 Birthday party! Want lots more ideas for celebrating Dr. Seuss style? Check out this round up of ideas and these delicious Thing 1 & Thing 2 Cookies!

Homemade Chocolate Covered Cherries

Homemade Chocolate Covered Cherries - eventstocelebrate.net

Chocolates are an iconic Valentine’s Day gift. These HOMEMADE CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRIES only have 3 ingredients, but look and taste special enough to be displayed in any heart shaped box. They’re simple enough to make that you could easily get your kids involved and let them take some to their teachers or friends. 

Homemade Chocolate Covered Cherries

Homemade Chocolate Covered Cherries:

Ingredients:

1 cup Powdered Sugar (or Confectioners Sugar)
4 Teaspoons Maraschino Cherry Juice (from the jar)
24 Maraschino Cherries
4 oz Chocolate Almond Bark (or other melting chocolate)

IMG_0704

Step 1: Drain the juice from the jar of Maraschino Cherries and reserve. Place cherries on a paper towel. IMPORTANT: you don’t want to dry the cherries out, in fact if you want you can store them back in the juice once you’ve measured out what you need to make the sugar paste. If the cherries are too dry, they won’t melt the sugar paste once the cherries are all dipped and finished.

IMG_0706

Step 2: Mix 1/2 cup of powdered sugar with 2 teaspoons of cherry juice by adding 1/2 teaspoon at a time and mixing well with the back of a spoon and until well incorporated. It’s going to take a little bit of work, but just keep at it until it looks like a very thick paste. If it is a little crumbly, don’t fret (my pet), it will smooth out once you roll it out (kind of like pie crust). As a note: I make the paste 1/2 batch at a time and wrap 12 cherries with it and then mix up the second 1/2. This way the mixture and cherries don’t dry out. 

Homemade Cherry Corials

Step 3: Take a small spoonful (about a teaspoon) and place it on some plastic wrap. Place a second piece of plastic wrap on top of it and use a rolling pin to roll it very thin. 

Remove the top layer of plastic wrap and place a cherry in the center. Use the plastic wrap on the bottom to help wrap up the sides and then twist at the top to form the paste around the cherry. Carefully unwrap and place on a plate. Continue with the remaining cherries. 

Chocolate Covered Cherries

Step 4: Once all of the cherries are wrapped in the sugar paste, place them in the freezer for at least 10 minutes – but up to 30 minutes. 

Chop 4 oz of Chocolate Almond Bark into chunks and melt in the microwave. Start by microwaving for 30 seconds, stir and go another 30 seconds. If after stirring again, it needs more time, go in 10 second increments, stirring very well after each one. You don’t want to burn the chocolate. Once fully melted remove the cherries from the freezer.

Begin by dipping the bottom of all of the cherries in the chocolate and setting on a plate. Once you have finished dipping all of the bottoms, go back to the first cherry and dip the rest of the cherry by holding on to the bottom. Make sure you get the entire cherry covered in chocolate. The juice will seep out of any tiny holes. Set on a plate to dry. 

Store at room temperature in an airtight container overnight. This allows the juice from the cherries to melt the sugar and turn it into that amazing “sauce” that surrounds cordial cherries. 

Homemade Chocolate Covered Cherries - eventstocelebrate.net

 I’m so excited to be participating in 14 Days of Love hosted by Carrie at Crafty Night Owls

14 Days of Love Logo

 

Be sure to check back here each day for new ideas – check out those that have already been shared:

 


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Free Valentine’s Day Printable: Army Valentine

I love the fun of Valentine’s Day for kids. Okay, I love it for me too, but do you remember how much fun it was to hand out Valentine’s in elementary school to your classmates?! In order to steer clear of handing out and getting even more candy, I went with a candy-free Valentine this year. And, guess what? I’m sharing with you these free Valentine’s Day Printable Army Valentines you can use! You’re welcome. 🙂 Free Valentine's Day Printable - ARMY - events to CELEBRATE!

FREE Printable Valentines: ARMY

I got a package of 48 Army men for $1.00 at my local Dollar Tree, but if you can’t find them, here are some Toy Soldiers on Amazon.

Then I designed this tag to go with them. You can write the to/from information on the back. Just click on the PDF link to print them on your home printer or you can save the file and have it printed at a print shop (which I HIGHLY recommend).

CLICK HERE FOR PDF: Army Valentine Printable – events to CELEBRATE!

Free Printable Valentine - ARMY - events to CELEBRATE!

Aren’t they cute? For about $.10 each you’ve got a unique, custom Army Valentine!

Free Printable Valentine - ARMY - events to CELEBRATE!

Here are links to more FREE Printable Valentines.

Rules for use:
– My free printables are for personal use only.
– They may not be modified, sold or used for profit in any way.
– If you feature them or repost them, please give Events to Celebrate proper credit with a link back to this post.

Like us on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter. Keep up on Pinterest. See fun photos on Instagram. Join me in a Google+ circle.

Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas for Teachers and Friends

I still remember coming home one Valentine’s Day afternoon when I was a freshman in high school to find a flower on my dresser with a note, scribbled on a 3 x 5 card in my Dad’s signature felt tip pen and barely legible hand writing, “I love you”.  There was one there for two of my sisters as well, which meant that the bouquet on the kitchen table for my mom only had 9 stems instead of 12. I’m sure she didn’t mind. It made me feel so special, especially because it meant that my father, who is blind, had taken a bus to the store to purchase the flowers and had to ask for help in selecting the flowers and finding the right money to pay with. My parents still pass out valentines to the grandchildren, a small treat with a store bought card expressing their love. It is simple, but means so much to me. I want to carry on this tradition and so even though my daughter is only 1 1/2 we wanted to make a few valentines for her to give away to those she loves.

I got the idea for these from the Silhouette blog. My sweetheart bought me a new Silhouette for Christmas this year and I LOVE it! It was a little bit of an investment, but I am having so much fun with it! If you don’t have an electronic cutting machine (come borrow mine) you could also put treats in little plastic cups and they would be just as cute! I saw valentines themed cups at Maceys grocery store 2 for $1 – or you could even use red Solo cups.

I cut out the french fry boxes from patterned scrapbook paper. IMG_8941

Then I took a page from my sisters decorating book (see Monday’s post) and added some newspaper pinwheels. I finished them off with a heart cut from cardstock. IMG_8942

I slid some tissue paper in them and filled them with sweet treats like ju-ju hearts, cinnamon lips, salt water taffy and sour balls and put them in a cellophane bag tied with a ribbon. I can’t wait to take her around to deliver these to her grandparents and her little friends. IMG_8947

I also wanted to make some treat baskets to take to some of the women in my neighborhood (wink, wink, nudge, nudge – visiting teaching) so I made a stop at my dollar store to pick up some supplies. I found these cute baskets there in the garbage can section and they were the perfect size and shape! Then I bought lots of fun goodies to fill them with like: popcorn, cream soda, a candle, suckers, candy jewelry, Little Debbie snacks (I miss Hostess so much!) and conversation hearts. IMG_8925

I added some tissue paper and wrapped them in cellophane (all found at the dollar store) and I think they turned out really cute! These would be great to give school teachers or your significant other! Each basket only cost $5 for everything!

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If you haven’t purchased the valentines your kids are going to distribute in school, don’t spend any money – here are links to 5 really cute FREE valentine printables that you can print right at home!

Free Printable Valentine - ARMY - events to CELEBRATE!

 

Army Valentine Printable

Colorful and fun valentine

Colorful and fun printable

Valentine kisses

Kisses bag topper printable

Treats for the Sweet valentine

Treats for the Sweet printable

You Rock valentine

You Rock! printable

Valentine’s Day DIY Decorations

Are you looking for some fun, simple and inexpensive Valentine’s Day decorations? Look no further!IMG_8933

This Valentine’s Day garland is easy to make, super cute and the supplies come right to your door each Sunday morning. A few years ago my sister Beth made this garland for me and gave it to me for Christmas. It was before pinwheels were all the rage, she’s ahead of the trends like that. 🙂 I was super excited to get it because it was my very first Valentine’s Day decoration!IMG_8939

I love that this garland looks a little antique, but is modernized by the little bit of glitz. It is made from newspaper (doesn’t get much less expensive than that in the world of scrapbooking paper that is normally $.60 – $1.00 per sheet) and embellished with shimmery card stock circles and chipboard white letters.IMG_89361- Cut strips of newspaper of equal width and length. You can leave the edges plain, use a border paper punch or use decorative scissors to cut along one edge. She used a Martha Stewart border punch to create the lacy edge (and I LOVE IT).

2- Accordion fold the strips of paper (if it is too short you may have to staple/glue two strips together). Then gather at the center (like making a paper fan) and secure the ends together with glue or staples.

3- Hot glue the pinched together center so it holds together.

4- Embellish with letters, hearts, glitter, etc.

It costs maybe a couple of dollars, takes about an hour and is one of my most favorite holiday decorations from any season!

Okay, so you need something that is even less time consuming than that? Here is a link to a FREE garland. All you have to do is print it, cut it out and string it.

vday free garland

Here are two really cute wreaths that are super simple to make, the supplies can be found almost anywhere (including WalMart) and they don’t cost a lot of money!

My friend Kara made this wreath out of wood heart cutouts from the craft store, painted them and glued them in a circle. Simple, inexpensive and a fun craft to do during naptime! She posted a tutorial here.

Kara's Valentines WreathI also love this one using a Styrofoam heart form, red felt circles and a hot glue gun to create this wreath. Again, super simple to make (especially if you have helpers cutting out the circles) with a super cute result! Here is a tutorial.

heart wreath

Couples Valentines Day Party

My friend Megan is like a sister to me and even though we only get to see each other a few times a year, I always go away wishing we lived just down the street from each other. She has one of those contagious personalities that you want around you all the time! A couple of years ago she hosted a fabulous couples only Valentine’s Day party.  My husband, Darrell, and I were lucky enough to get an invite and we had such a great time! Somehow I got the party time incorrect and when we showed up she had just gotten out of the shower! Oops. 🙂 So, we wandered around Lowe’s for an hour and then came back.

Read her post about the event here. Let me fill you in on some of the fun details.

Valentine's couples party

The food: Oh goodness, the food! I still remember how good those chocolate cupcakes with raspberry filling and cream cheese frosting were. I wanted to take the entire stand and go hide with them in a closet for the rest of the night. I think I ate 3. She had an impressive spread of desserts including: oreo truffles, cookies, cupcakes, cake, chocolate/oatmeal bars, chocolate covered strawberries and brownies. You know how you pin all these really delicious dessert ideas on Pinterest and wish you had an occasion/excuse to make them? This type of party is perfect for that! Even better, let your guests bring a dessert and recipe to share and that will cut out some of the work for you.

The games: As she posts, she had a couples white elephant gift exchange (PG rated) and it was hilarious and so much fun to participate in. I loved that she took something typically only done at Christmas and brought it to Valentine’s Day. The Catch Phrase/Taboo game was a riot! We split into two teams and had 30 seconds for one of our teammates to give clues for us to guess as many famous couples as we could. Here is a link to a list of famous couples.  Because there were a variety of people at the party with a variety of interests she also used some literary couples (Romeo and Juliet, Bella and Edward, Ron and Hermione) and some pop culture (Beyonce and Jay-Z, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie) and some fictional (Fred and Wilma, Homer and Marge, Barbie and Ken).

Even if you aren’t planning a couples party this year, save these ideas for next year or adapt them to do as a family for a fun Valentine’s Day Family Home Evening! Thanks for the great ideas Megan!!

**Do you have a party you would like to have featured? Email me at eventstocelebrateblog@gmail.com!

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