We had a great Valentine's Day. About two weeks before, I thought, you know, I really like having people over and we never do it anymore because I feel like it's so hard with the kids, but I am not going to use that as an excuse anymore (I thought that exact run-on sentence). One rapidly penned email and I had invited about 5 families over for Valentine's Day. There was no going back. And I am so glad. We had a great night, and we helped at least a couple other moms to not have to put on some crazy event for their own family. Helping out another mom is about the best I can hope for.
I have to say, the kids did a fantastic job of helping clean and staying out of the way so I could clean. We're definitely reaching a new era of functioning. Ward is obviously still the weak link, but he was nicely distracted by steam cleaning the table.
It's a Horne tradition to fire up the chocolate fountain on Valentine's Day, and that's just what we did. It takes so much chocolate just to make it flow, inviting over so many guests meant way less chocolate wasted at the end of the night. Win.
I found when you have flowing chocolate people don't care a lot about anything else that might be going on. It makes for a very simple gathering. I did pick up some valentine necklaces for the kids to share with their friends that came, and they took it to a whole other level...they made signs and offered color options. It was great.
Them waiting crazy anxious on the stairs for the guests to arrive was pretty great too. I have to point out, all of the kids chose their own party outfits, but Amos in particular put a lot of thought into his:
That's probably all the red he owns ;)
Other than our fun party, making Valentines for the kids at school was a big highlight this year. Maggie's teacher sent home the class list several weeks early, with instructions that the kids could make or buy valentines for all of the kids on the list. Maggie had her heart set on making them. Since it was three weeks in advance, I figured I'd let her have a crack at it and when she burned out we'd buy some at the store. After I took a picture of the list so I had a copy when she lost it, I handed it over to Maggie with zero expectations. I didn't pay one ounce of attention to what she was doing until only one week was left and she said she was finished. I went in, and checked the list (which she hadn't lost) with her and indeed, she had created a personalized invitation for each and every kid in her class. She didn't miss one! It was incredible. Amos, on the other hand, made one handmade one and was ready to go to the store ;) Audrey made a couple, but they accidentally got thrown out, and she couldn't bring herself to try again.
Audrey happily tested out Amos' "How To Train Your Dragon" Valentines for him:
The artist at work:
The final tradition of Valentine's Day is flowers from the boys to the girls. Audrey and Maggie loved their pink roses, and Amos feels super cool giving them:
I got a bouquet from Pike's Place, and my favorite cheesecake, also Pike's Place. We even managed to go out on Friday night, just Eric and I. I couldn't ask for a single thing more...