20 Quotes for Valentine’s Day

Are you ready for February 14th? Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.  The day is all about love. Are you trying to figure out the right words to write on a card?  Perhaps, the following quotes will provide the perfect inspiration.

  1. “Life is the flower for which love is the honey.” – Victor Hugo.
  2. “If you live to be a hundred, I want to live to be a hundred minus one day, so I never have to live without you,”Winnie the Pooh.
  3. “I am grateful to have been loved and to be loved now and to be able to love, because that liberates. Love liberates,” – Maya Angelou.
  4. “To love and be loved is to the feel the sun from both sides.” – David Viscott.
  5. “Whatever souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” – Emily Bronte.
  6. “Love is the greatest refreshment in life.” – Pablo Picasso.
  7. “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. / I love thee to the depth and breadth and height / My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight / For the ends of being and ideal grace.” ­– Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  8. “There’s no bad consequence to loving fully, with all your heart. You always gain by giving love.” – Reese Witherspoon.
  9. “Doubt thou the stars are fire; Doubt that the sun doth move; Doubt truth to be a liar; But never doubt I love,” – William Shakespeare.
  10. “All that you are is all that I’ll ever need.” – Ed Sheeran.
  11. “Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back.” – Plato.
  12. “Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is wing’d Cupid painted blind.”William Shakespeare.
  13. “There is no remedy for love but to love more,” – Henry David Thoreau.
  14. “You are the finest, loveliest, tenderest, and most beautiful person I have ever known, but even that is an understatement,” – F. Scott Fitzgerald.
  15. “You are the answer to every prayer I’ve offered.” – Nicholas Sparks.
  16. “When you love someone all your saved-up wishes start coming out.” – Elizabeth Bowen.
  17. “Love is something eternal … The aspect may change but not the essence.” – Vincent Van Gogh.
  18. “You can’t blame gravity for falling in love.” – Albert Einstein.
  19. “If I had a flower for every time I thought of you … I could walk through my garden forever.” – Alfred Tennyson.
  20. “You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”- Dr. Suess

 

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Handmade Christmas Wrapping Paper Craft

Are you looking to start a new Christmas tradition? How about making handmade Christmas wrapping paper for all of your gifts? Doing Christmas crafts as a family activity is a great way to celebrate the holiday season. Best of all, making homemade gift wrap is an easy project for all ages.

Materials Needed:

  • Sponges of any size and shape
  • Scissors
  • Butcher paper, newsprint, or other types of packing paper (You can purchase rolls of brown shipping paper at your local dollar store).
  • Paint
  • Containers for paint
  • Markers

Instructions:

  1. Cut sponges into various shapes, for example, Christmas trees, gift boxes, stars, candy canes, and ornaments. (Help younger children cut the sponges into shapes.)
  2. Spread your choice of paper on a flat surface.
  3. Squirt small amounts of paint in your container.
  4. Dip your cut sponge into the paint.
  5. Make certain the paint covers the entire sponge for a clear shape.
  6. Press sponge on to the paper. When you are finished, simply rinse the sponges of the entire paint residue. You can use the sponges more than once.
  7. Continue the process until you reach your desired design.
  8. Allow the paint shapes to dry.
  9. Use markers to add outlines, Christmas songs, Bible verses, names, or other designs to your gift wrap.
  10. Now, wrap your Christmas gifts and enjoy it.

Homemade gift wrap is an excellent way to provide a personalized touch to your presents. Use your imagination to create numerous sheets of wrapping paper. Set the mood for family fun by playing Christmas music, drinking hot chocolate, and eating snacks.

Christmas Fun: Making Plaster Ornaments

Let’s face it, the Christmas season can get busy quickly. Spending high-quality family time together is essential to enjoy the holidays. When you are you looking for fun, family activities to celebrate Christmas, consider making plaster ornaments.

Plaster ornaments are simple to make. You can hang them on your own tree. Or share them with family members as gifts. Kids will love making an ornament for grandma, grandpa, a favorite aunt or uncle.

Materials Needed:

  • Christmas themed molds or pans (The plaster does not harm them, just wash thoroughly after use.)
  • Plaster
  • Throw away containers for mixing plaster. (Remember not to pour remaining plaster down the sink.)
  • Water
  • Paint in various colors
  • Paintbrushes

Instructions:

  1. Place newspapers or other protective materials on your counter.
  2. Mix plaster as directed. Always add the plaster mixture to the water for a smooth and consistent mixture. (Keep in mind, the plaster hardens quickly. You need to have your molds ready to go. You can add a little extra water to provide a bit more time).
  3. Fill the molds completely.
  4. Place hangers into your mold. (Paper clips or pop can tab work great for an instant, inexpensive hanger).
  5. Allow your ornaments to dry completely.
  6. Gently remove the ornaments from the molds. You may need to tap on the mold to loosen the ornament.
  7. Paint the ornaments. (You can also personalize the ornaments with names).

Even younger children can help with the painting process. Just do not forget to add the date on the back. The Christmas ornaments can quickly turn into a lasting treasure.

Sugar Cookies: A Christmas Tradition

Are you looking for another simple way to celebrate the Christmas season? Baking during the holidays is a long-standing tradition. Sugar cookies are a tasty treat to decorate, share, and eat. Helping to reduce the stress of the holiday mad-dash of baking, sugar cookies can be frozen to decorate later.

Dig out your favorite sugar cookie recipe, find a new one on Pinterest, or grab a tube of dough at your local store. Regardless of your method, sugar cookies are a fun way to celebrate the Christmas season.

  1. Bake your cookies from the method of choice.
  2. Allow your batch of sugar cookies to cool.
  3. Frost cookies.
  4. Decorate

Do you want to get the kids involved in making sugar cookies to celebrate the Christmas season? Set out different types of holiday sprinkles, marshmallows, nuts, and other toppings. Then, ask your children to help decorate the cookies. Making up new designs and colors provides added fun. Enjoy the creative process going into each cookie.

Finally, time to eat the cookies! Put a plate of cookies out as part of family night. Share a batch with a neighbor.

You can always add a nice cup of hot chocolate or milk to the celebration. Now, the next challenge, who gets to pick the Christmas movie for family night?

Christmas Pretzel Treats

Is the hustle and bustle of the holiday season keeping you busy? Do you need a quick and easy snack for a holiday gathering or family movie night? Chocolate covered pretzel treats are a fun way to celebrate Christmas. The pretzel treats are an easy make-ahead snack.

Materials Needed:

  • Dipping chocolate (For added Christmas fun, purchase red or green colored dipping cholate)
  • Pretzels of any style will work.
  • Christmas sprinkles, marshmallows, nuts, chocolate chips, shredded coconut

Instructions:

  1. Melt dipping chocolate as directed. You can melt the chocolate in the microwave or use a double boiler pan.
  2. Melt chocolate to desired consistency. Smooth, well-heated chocolate is easy to apply to pretzels.
  3. Dip pretzels in chocolate.
  4. Add sprinkles. For extra fun, allow your children to help decorate with the sprinkles. Creating their own snacks is a great way to get everyone involved.
  5. Allow the chocolate to harden.
  6. You can store the pretzels in a plastic bag or airtight container.

Happy 40th Birthday, Harry Potter!

Today, July 31st, 2020, is J. K. Rowling’s character, Harry Potter’s 40th birthday. If you do not know by now, J.K. Rowling’s birthday is also today. So, here is wishing a Happy 40th Birthday to Harry Potter, “the boy who lived” and the author who brought magic alive for millions of fans.

Why celebrate? Well, the real question is, “why not celebrate.” Stay at home orders, social distancing, and other restrictions lead to canceled plans for you, your friends, or your family. Finding little things to celebrate is a great way to make memories during this current health crisis.

Ways to Celebrate Harry Potter’s Birthday

Are you looking for simple ways to celebrate? Well, binge-watching the Harry Potter series is one of the best ways to celebrate. For extra fun, make popcorn, order pizza, or host a watch party online.

For the love of a fandom

Other ways to celebrate include:

  • Read: The new illustrated editions draw you right into the Wizarding World.
  • Join a Group: Social media hosts numerous groups, including Adult Fans of Harry Potter. Connecting with other Harry Potter fans is a beautiful way to chat about the growing fandom.
  • Subscribe: GeekGear and other monthly subscription boxes brings your love of the Wizarding World right to your doorstep.
  • Listen to a Podcast: Finding a new podcast or listening to an old favorite provides insight into the world of Harry Potter.
  • Do Crafts: Let your creativity shine.
  • Make Food: Pinterest has thousands of recipes relating to the Wizarding World. Maybe you can discover your inner chef.
  • Host a Zoom Session: Invite friends to chat with you about Harry Potter.
  • Write Fan Fiction: Put your pen to paper or start typing to write a story about the Wizarding World, Hogwarts, or the characters in the books.
  • Join a Cause: The Harry Potter Alliance advocates different worthy causes. Learn different ways to transform your love for Harry Potter to real life situations.

Celebrate July 31st; small occasions can quickly turn into lasting memories for you and your family.  For millions of fans, the day is just the beginning of Harry Potter’s magical tale.

10 Days of Harry Potter: Chocolate Frogs, Coins, and More

In J.K. Rowling’s beloved Harry Potter series, large feasts, parties, sneaking down to the kitchens, or devouring Molly’s home cooking, food is a common theme. Who wouldn’t want to eat their way through a Hogwart’s start of term feast or the extravagant Halloween festivities?

Are you wondering how to celebrate Harry Potter with special treats? Consider the following ideas.

Chocolate Frogs and Chocolate Coins

Materials Needed:

  • Frog and coin molds
    Silicone Frog Mold

  • Dipping chocolate

Instructions:

  1. Melt dipping chocolate as directed. You can melt the chocolate in the microwave or use a double boiler pan.
  2. Melt chocolate to desired consistency.
  3. When ready, carefully spoon the chocolate into the molds.
  4. Allow hardening.
  5. Serve.

Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean 

Pick up a box of Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean. Try and guess each flavor without looking at the guide.

Added Fun

When having a fun-filled Harry Potter food night, try something new. Many novelty stores or specialty shops sell edible insects. Make memories by trying something completely new. Who is the brave one in your family?

 

 

10 Days of Harry Potter: Chocolate Frog Craft

On the Hogwarts Express in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, the readers first learn about Chocolate Frogs. Our beloved characters Ron Weasley and Harry Potter, are sharing treats off from the trolley.

“Oh, of course, you wouldn’t know — Chocolate Frogs have cards inside of them, you know, to collect — famous witches and wizards. I’ve got about five hundred, but I haven’t got Agrippa or Ptolemy” (Rowling, 1998).

Well, you cannot make your frog jump. But you can create Chocolate Frogs out of plaster to paint. Use the plaster Chocolate frogs on different projects, including Christmas tree ornaments or wreaths. Or simply have you Chocolate Frog sitting on your desk.

How to Make Plaster Chocolate Frogs

Materials Needed:

  • Chocolate frog molds (Silicone or plastic, both molds provide excellent results when working with plaster.)
    Plastic Frog Mold

    Silicone Frog Mold
  • Plaster
  • Throw away containers for mixing plaster. (Remember not to pour remaining plaster down the sink.)
  • Water
  • Paint in various colors
  • Paintbrushes

Instructions:

  1. Place newspapers or other protective materials on your counter.
  2. Mix plaster as directed. Always add the plaster mixture to the water for a smooth and consistent mixture. (Keep in mind, the plaster hardens quickly. You need to have your molds ready to go. You can add a little extra water to provide a bit more time).
  3. Fill the molds completely.
  4. Place hangers into your mold if you want to use them as ornaments or decorative pieces on wreaths. (Paper clips or pop can tab work great for an instant, inexpensive hangers).
  5. Allow your ornaments to dry.
  6. Gently remove the frogs from the molds. You may need to tap on the mold to loosen the frog.
  7. Paint the frog.

Now you are ready to display your very own Chocolate Frog.

 

Reference

Rowling, J. K., author. (1998). Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone. New York: Arthur A. Levine Books,

10 Days of Harry Potter: Make a Wand

Making a wand is another way to celebrate the wonderful Wizarding World. In J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stong, the character Ollivander tells Harry, “Curious indeed how these things happen. The wand chooses the wizard, remember…I think we must expect great things from you, Mr. Potter… After all, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named did great things — terrible, yes, but great.” (Rowling, 1998).

Tips on Making a Wand

Making a wand is your personal creative choice. There is no right or wrong way.

Materials Needed:

  • Wooden dowels, chopsticks, or pencils
  • Hot glue gun (depending on your design you may need more than one glue stick)
  • Paint in the color of your choice
  • Embellishments (optional)
  • String (optional)
  1. Start on a clean surface.
  2. Drip the hot glue around the top of the wooden dowel to make your desired wand grip. At this point, you can different beads, string, or other embellishments to make a unique wand handle.
  3. Allow to completely dry.
  4. Paint in the color and design of your choice. Use your imagination. Write down all the details of your wand. What does the color mean? What is in the inner core of the wand?
  5. Allow to completely dry again.
  6. Enjoy your wand creation.

 

Reference

Rowling, J. K., author. (1998). Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone. New York: Arthur A. Levine Books,

10 Days of Harry Potter: Fan Art

If you type “Harry Potter fan art” into your search engine, amazing and talented results will appear. J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World is an inspiration for artists of all levels. Making art is one of the best ways to celebrate 10 Days of Harry Potter. Whether you make graphic art or simply draw with a pencil, relax and enjoy making fan art.

Basic Art Supply List

Are you looking for a materials list? Check out the following for a basic supply list for making art.

  • Drawing pencils
  • Colored pencils
  • Markers
  • Ink
  • Chalk (Use chalk on paper or draw on the sidewalk to share your art)
  • Charcoal
  • Crayons
  • Paint
  • Watercolors
  • Drawing paper
  • Construction paper (Dark paper is great in combination with chalk)
  • Poster board
  • Glass frames (works well with ink and paint)

When you have a tight budget, purchase basic drawing materials at your local dollar store.

Use Your Imagination

  • What animal will you take to Hogwarts?
  • Draw your wand.
  • Create one of Hagrid’s magical creatures.
  • Draw the castle.
  • Paint your house colors on a poster board.
  • Draw yourself in the classroom. What would be your favorite subject at Hogwarts?
  • Draw a potion. What does the potion do?
  • Grab your sketch pad and find a perfect tree to sit under. Now, pretend you are at the Forest of Dean from the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. What do you see?

There are no right or wrong ways to create fan art. Take your time, listen to Harry Potter on audio, and allow your imagination flow.

 

 

References

Rowling, J. K., author. (1998). Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone. New York: Arthur A. Levine Books,

Yates, D., Heyman, D., Barron, D., Rowling, J. K., Wigram, L., Kloves, S., Serra, E., … Warner Home Video (Firm),. (2011). Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1.

 

 

 

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