Here's a little recap of our family festivities on Monday.
The kids and I spent the whole day doing some scheming of the love kind to surprise Kevin when he came home from work. (and when I say the kids helped me, I mean Ava Grace enthusiastically joined in and Jackson didn't completely derail our efforts.)
We started with making paper valentines for Kev listing off some of the things we love about him best.
My favorite was Ava Grace's, "We love you all the days Daddy. You can stay forever."
We then stuck them around the house in a trail that would lead Kevin to his eventual destination and the real site of our efforts; the nursery.
Jackson came along behind us pulling the cards down repeatedly, crumpling a few, so we shrugged it off, taped them back together put them back on the walls and claimed that as his contribution.
I have been wanting to incorporate more role acting into our daily playtime after being so inspired by The Creative Family By Amanda Blake Soule, so this Valentines Day seemed a perfect opportunity to set up the nursery as our own personal theater and put on a production in Kev's honor.
To rig up our stage and curtains I used some ceiling screw-hooks and rope and strung some random sheers across the middle of the room. For our stage I used a folding work table (still folded flat and laid on the floor) as a little platform and surrounded the set-up with a set of Christmas tree lights.
It's amazing how those few household items transformed the space and our day, as it sparked the children's imaginations and kept them entertained for hours!
We had a busy afternoon with an impromptu visit with Oma and Great Oma and spent a delightful hour poring over photo albums and eating cinnamon buns, and then we all had family eye appointments with the Optometrist at 4:30.
I also spent naptime creating a slideshow on Window Movie Maker and then lost half of it when my computer froze, so in great bitterness I have decided once and for all that I DISLIKE Windows Movie Maker....STRONGLY.
Anyway, Kevin got home a little behind us from the Eye Clinic, and that gave us a few last minutes to fix what I could with the slideshow, rig up a few more lamps borrowed from the living room, throw ourselves into some fabulous costumes from the dress-up trunk and go over the lines; "I'll love you forever/ I'll like you for always/ As long as I'm living/my baby you'll be"*
The whole thing worked out really well. We could hear Kevin downstairs going from note to note chuckling at the sentiments written, and Ava was close to peeing her self with excitement "backstage" as he ascended the stairs toward the nursery.
The whole performance was a lovely affair with singing, poems, a puppet show with Ava's dolls (sans lines, so a pantomime, really) and Jackson trashing the stage every few seconds singing one note at the top of his lungs; something like this, "DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!" (his name for Kevin).
When it was over there was much clapping and tears in Daddy's eyes and then Ava was presented with a little bouquet of white flowers from her Daddy which she loves immensely. She kept holding them out and bowing like a grand actress or dancer on a stage and blowing us kisses.
Then Jackson pulled the curtains down on everyone.
Honestly it was one of the best family celebrations we've had. I'm thinking this should be a tradition, and not just for Valentines Day.
Surely any day with that much fun, imagination and thoughtfulness becomes a "Love Day" in the truest sense, so I'm keeping those curtains and Christmas lights handy.
* From Robert Munsch's "I'll Love You Forever