Fun Valentine’s Day Activities With Children

I reached out and asked for ideas about activities to do with children for Valentine’s Day.  As a mom of two children, Valentine’s Day has become more of a fun, family holiday, instead of a couple’s day.  I received two replies that I wanted to share with my readers.  I have posted them below.  I hope you like them as much as I did.

Coupon & savings expert Jon Lal can provide frugal Valentine’s Day activity
ideas to have a great, low-cost V-Day with the kids. A few of his ideas are
below. He can provide more upon request:

1. Bake cookies then decorate them. Heart cutouts are great, as are
using food coloring to create red and pink cookies and frosting. Kids enjoy
this activity.

2. Make candy together.

3. Make then exchange home-made paper valentines for each other. This
is a great activity with the kids!

4. Write a poem together (group collaboration).

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Gail Dosik of One Tough Cookie (www.onetoughcookienyc.com).
Gail encourages families to get together and decorate cookies and has
prepared kid-friendly tips that make Valentine’s Day cookie decorating a
piece of cake.

Tips for Decorating Valentine¹s Day Cookies with Kids.

1. Keep the shapes simple circles, stars, hearts, flowers. Pick shapes
children can easily identify and relate to.
2. Use squeeze bottles for icing they’re much easier to work with than
pastry bags. They’re available at cake decorating and craft stores
everywhere, as well as online. They’re easy to refill, too.
3. Kids LOVE to use the icing as a glue for little edible candies in all
sorts of shapes and colors. Use red, pink and white colors in heart shapes
for Valentine¹s Day decorating.
4. Edible markers are another way to decorate cookies, especially if you’re
mess-adverse. You can frost cookies with plain white royal icing the day
before and let the cookies dry. The next day the kids can color to their
hearts content on their edible canvasses.
5. Write your child’s classmates  names on the cookies. They make fun and
delicious Valentine’s Day party treats.
6. Bake the cookies ahead of time so that they are cool and ready to be
decorated. I personally suggest baking the night before while everyone is
sleeping. Then you also have a chance to try one (or two) cookies for taste
testing purposes.
7. Make the cookies a bit thicker than usual and bake extra. The thicker
cookies should help minimize breakage but if it does happen, you will have
extra cookies available
8. Use lollipop sticks to make lollipop cookies. Kids and adults go crazy
for them.

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When Your Child Lies and Steals

We keep a jar on top of the refrigerator that my husband empties his change into everyday. I use the change for giving the kids lunch money each day. Sometimes, things get hectic in the mornings, and I have my daughter get her own lunch money out of the jar.
Saturday, my daughter was spending money at the bowling ally and the restaurant. Not much, a total of about $1.00. My husband asked her where she got the money. She said it was money she had left over from last year. It was money she had been saving. It didn’t sound right. My daughter can not save money for the life of her. As soon as she has it, she has to spend it.
We were in the car when this all came out, on our way home from lunch out. By the time we reached home, and parked, I was determined to get the truth out of my daughter. One thing I will not tolerate is having my kids lie to me. My husband and son went into the house, and my daughter and I stayed in the car. It took awhile, but I finally got the truth out of her. She had taken some change out of the change jar.
That upset me, because it was stealing, and I taught my daughter better than that. It was her that lying was wrong. I knew why she lied. She was scared. She knew she had done something wrong, but wasn’t sure why it was wrong. In her mind, it should have been alright for her to get money out of the jar. But, deep inside, she knew it was wrong. Her inner voice had told her it was wrong, but she didn’t listen. She lied to me. That hurt me the most. How can I trust her, if she can lie to me? It wasn’t the first time she had lied. Children lie. They have to be taught that it is wrong to lie. Little things like, “Brother did it.” “I don’t know.” Brother didn’t do it. They do know. Not a big deal, but my husband and I would call her out on the little lies, explaining the importance of always telling the truth when we ask her a question. The last time she told a little lie, I told her she would be punished if she were to lie to us again.
This time around, I don’t consider this a little lie. My husband and I had asked her straight out if she had taken money out of the jar, and she said no. Twice asked, and twice denied. My heart broke. It was all I could do to remain calm, and not cry. I wasn’t angry. I was hurt and disappointed.
She was punished. She has lost her TV and computer privileges for a week. She tried to negotiate a lighter punishment, but it didn’t work. I explained to her that if she hadn’t lied, her punishment would have been lighter. She stole from us, and she lied about it. Very serious. Now she has to deal with the consequences. Now I have to deal with whether or not I trust her.

NC Hospital Policy Not To Hire Disabled

I found out yesterday that the hospital in my town has a policy not to hire mentally disabled, or let them volunteer.  I checked their website, and they claim to be an equal opportunity employer.  Is this a fair claim if they will hire a physically disabled person, but not a mentally disabled person?

One of the biggest hospitals in the state makes a point of hiring personnel with disabilities.  They will gear a job towards a person’s abilities.  Why can’t the hospital in my town do the same?  I don’t know.  I was going to contact them, and ask, but I got the feeling from my source that this was an unwritten policy.

The facts are, and I hate to admit it, they can not hire mentally disabled personnel, or allow them to volunteer, simply by not   creating positions for them.  Or by not adapting jobs for them.  There are a lot of tasks that a mentally disabled person can do, but employers have to take time to create positions for each individual person.  Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of employers willing to do that.

This situation saddens and angers me.  In a few years, my son will be old enough to have a job.  He is very low functioning, but there are jobs that he can do.  He’s great with organization.  He’s great about putting things in their proper place.  He’s great at sorting.  He would need someone with him at all times, but he has a community aid for that.  He also has me and his father.

Things don’t get easier as our children grow up.  If anything, they get harder.