Growing up, we always celebrated Valentine’s Day with my entire family. My most memorable Valentine’s Day was when I was 7 years old. My dad came home from work and my brother and I were waiting for our Valentine’s Day Present. He said, Sarah & Mark, “All I have for you is 1 big kiss.” I was never a fan of kisses from “old” people, so my face fell. Where was my present? My dad started to laugh when he saw our reactions. He proceeded to pull out a giant Hershey’s kiss from behind his back for the both of us. It was huge. A solid 7-oz. chocolate rock of all rocks. We were so excited and blown-away that we started jumping around and laughing as if we’d already consumed the sugar-high. My mom sliced off a little sliver for both of us. I remember eating that 1 kiss over the course of 2 months. And I know my mom took off slices for herself or threw them away to get rid of it faster.
Today, some of us may eat that entire 7-oz. chocolate in 2 days and not share any of it with others. So to save our waistlines and keep our kids at sugar-bay, here are some alternative Valentine’s Day Sweet ideas for you & your family:
#1. Heart-Shaped Cookie Cutters! These sell for $1.25.
You can use the cookie cutters to make these “sweet” treats:
- heart-shaped sandwiches
- heart-shaped fruits like watermelon or apples
- heart-shaped potatoes and more
#2. Mix Fruit With Chocolate or Powdered Sugar! Adding in some colors, vitamins, and antioxidants with your fruits is a great and healthy way to making some sweet treats. Simply drizzle some chocolate syrup or sprinkle some powdered sugar over the fruit and enjoy the blissful sweet delight. Remember, presentation is everything so make that fruit & sugar combination look divine.
#3. Arts & Crafts Can Be So Sweet: You can make one another Valentine’s Day cards by using different colored construction paper, scissors, glue sticks, pens, and glitter. Get creative and let one another know how much you care through your cards and your words.
#4. Get “Lei-ed!” Buy 2 bunches of flowers. You can use carnations (they are cheap and easy to make lei’s with). Using a needle and thread, slide the flowers onto the string and make everyone in the family a lei. It’s exciting, exotic, and extremely sweet.
#5. Sweet Adventures! A fantastic alternative to the traditional sweet treat is to go on an adventure to your local Exploratorium or another type of fun, interactive, kid-friendly museum where you can spend the entire day playing, learning, and exploring.
By Sarah Koszyk, MA, RDN