I get really tired of the sugar fest that is Valentine’s Day, the Hallmark holiday co-opted by the sugar and flower industries. Why can’t Valentine’s Day cards exchanged at school be candy-free? We know our kids don’t need more sugar…but “it’s a special occasion,” is the excuse, so we give them lots.
Sometimes I volunteer to plan the party, just so I can make sure the Valentine’s Day treats the kids are being served at school are healthy (and they can chow on their sugary junk at home).
Today I’m pumped to share some candy-free ideas to include with Valentine’s Day cards at school, for those of you who like to give kids a little treat but abhor the thought of contributing to the sugar overload. And actually, even if you’re a fan of candy, these are too cute – keep reading. 😉
For quite a few years, my kids just made handmade cards for Valentine’s Day – counter cultural already because everyone buys them and usually the parents just write the kids’ names. I want my kids to be involved, to care, and to have a little purposeful craft and writing time. So. Homemade, ugly cards that were hearts cut out of construction paper (by the children). They were awesome.
My kids started asking to include a treat though, and I thought we came up with a really cute idea our first time around. (And I didn’t even use Pinterest, gasp!) 😉
It’s not the most frugal option, I’ll admit – we bought these pouches (found on Amazon) without any sugar at Costco, but they were still probably almost 50 cents a kid. But they were cute! And, ha, we still cut out construction paper. #oldschool
Fun “Fruity” Valentine’s Notes
This year we brainstormed as many other cute phrases we could put on actual healthy items as possible, and my amazing team worked up some printables, totally free because we love you – and we can show that without sugar or candy! 😉
Simply going thru the produce section inspires so many fun and healthy Valentine treat ideas. Along with a cute note these will quickly become your kids’ favorite.
- Will you be my Clementine?
- Hi there, Kiwi Pie!
- Here’s a Cutie for the cutie (with a Clementine)
- I’m blueberry without you
- I’m bananas for you, Valentine
- Orange you going to kiss me?
- Slip into my arms, Valentine (with a banana)
- Cantaloupe tonight, dear, let’s wait for Valentine’s Day.
- You’re awfully a-peel-ing to me, Valentine (with a banana or string cheese or orange…)
- Let’s “stick” together, Valentine! (with a cheese stick)
- I’d never “string” you along, Valentine! (with string cheese)
- Have a “berry” happy Valentine’s Day! (with any berries or fruit strips)
- I’m “flat”tered by you, Valentine! (with a fruit strip)
- You look “sharp” to me! (with a pencil)
- and our original “Squeeze Me, Valentine” with the pouches
We made them “color-your-own” because I still stand behind the idea that kids should be involved – plus I know my own color ink is always missing a color or acting weird, and I empathize with busy mamas. 😉
Ready to print these tags?
I’ll send you a whole bunch of options, not to overwhelm you, but to give you and your kids choices. Whatever candy free treat you choose, you’ll be able to print a whole page of matching tags!
Big thanks for inspiration goes to:
If you want a super frugal, DIY no-food-at-all option, my son chose this mustache idea and we DIY’d the mustache straws.
Valentine’s Day Breakfast Surprise
Don’t forget to try a heart-shaped breakfast! The kids will be so excited to see this fun breakfast. Or get your kids in the kitchen and let them help with the fun!
Fun and Easy Valentine’s Day Party Ideas
If you happen to have the joy of planning a party for your child’s class, please be inspired by my healthy Valentine’s Day party treats and games.
RELATED: Due to allergies most schools have a “no homemade” rule. Don’t feel trapped into bringing over processed treats, there are tons of healthy real food options in stores now: Healthy School Treats when you Can’t Make Homemade.
Enjoy the week, and Happy Valentine’s Day!