Friday, February 11, 2011

Ladies Valentine Exchange

This party was totally inspired by the ever creative Stephanie and her annual valentine exchanges. She does one for her girlfriends each year and I've thought about it for the last couple of years. Two years ago I was super pregnant and busy getting a nursery ready. Last year my house was on the market and it's next to impossible to host a party while your house is listed (with two little ones, no less). So, this was the year. I love making and passing out Valentines and do it every year anyway so why not make a party out of it?

I sent out 18 invites thinking I'd get 10-12 attendees and that was a decent number of valentines to bring to exchange. I asked everyone to RSVP by a certain date so we'd know how many valentines to have ready. I ended up with 15 total and was surprised to get that many but it turned out well. I used Shabby Princess digital designs for the invitations then mailed them off in red envelopes.
A few weren't able to come last night so they dropped off their valentines throughout the day. I was beyond impressed and so excited about all of them as they piled up on the table.

Melissa made chap stick for everyone.
Jodie made everyone a little wooden decor piece with vinyl letters and hearts.
Mary made heart shaped chocolate chip cookies.
Kelli made everyone this cute tile to display.
Michelle picked up super soft sugar cookies from a local bakery.
Samantha brought little Bath & Body Works hand sanitizers.
Tina made everyone a ribbon bookmark with little charms.
Julie made fabric flower pins.
Sally made bath salts.
Rebecca made little hanging hearts filled with candy.
Susan sewed valentine ruffles onto dish towels.
Kim made heart shaped crayons.
Emily made pink sprinkled sugar cookies.
Stacy made pink heart shaped rice krispy treats.
And I made apple cinnamon jelly. I've made this for Christmas and Valentine gifts in the past because it's made with red hot candies and is a beautiful bright red color. I used 4 oz jelly jars and then created a label for the top punched out with my scallop punch.
I tried to keep the food simple and simplified it even more after my little girl had a fever all week. Luckily, Julie and Stacy came early and helped out. Thanks again, ladies!

I made two kinds of mini trifles: strawberry lemon and chocolate. Stacy skewered up the caprese skewers of mozzarella, basil and grape tomatoes then we drizzled them in olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Julie dipped strawberries in chocolate and white chocolate. Then I made a hot crab dip and served it with a toasted baguette. My heart garland was compliments of my three year old. He learned how to cut hearts a few weeks ago when I folded a paper and drew the shape on and he couldn't stop. He wanted to cut more and more so I gave him the right colored paper and drew the sizes I wanted and he cut away. Then we sewed (I fed hearts while he did the foot pedal) them into garland and hung them around the house.

We played a game because a party isn't a party without a game and prizes, right??? I printed off pictures of couples from films and numbered them. Then I asked everyone to guess the movie and gave bonus points if they could name the characters. I'm surprised at how many hadn't seen the BBC Pride and Prejudice. Blasphemy!

I gave everyone Valentine gift bags and then we went around the table and filled them up!
Everyone had fun and I think this is going to be an annual tradition for me. I can't wait to see what everyone comes up with next year.

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  1. sigh.. wishing I lived close.. sigh...

  2. How creative you are....only wish you'd inherited that creative gene from me! But I am a good copy cat. Happy Valentine's Day, Amy. Love you lots and miss you bunches.

  3. Amy...I had a blast! Thank you for inviting me! Can't wait for next year :)