We crafted, packaged, and mailed our own creations, and in turn received the greetings below! Thanks again Hilltown Families!
Once again, we’ve thrown our crafty hats into the ring of the Hilltown Families Hand-made Valentine Swap!
This annual tradition charges local families in the hidden hamlets of western Massachusetts (the Hilltowns) with creating original Valentines and sending them to other families and individuals.
I’ve actually participated in the HFHVS several times, including before I had children, and each year we receive a wide array of greetings from people of all ages in exchange for our own offerings.
This year, our Valentines took on two forms: magic wands and heart flowers, which followed the same basic pattern. First, I bought sheets of heart-shaped labels from Avery (I used template 94603, but there were a few available sizes) and craft sticks, ribbon, foam hearts, and heart stickers from Amazon. We rounded-out the supply list with our own stash of sequins, beads, markers, glue, and paints.
From there, two labels stuck together over a craft stick created the base for any creation, and we were off to the races — making not just enough for each Hilltown family on our list, but also for family members, friends, and holiday decor around the homestead.
Many thanks to Hilltown Families founder, publisher, and editor Sienna Wildfield for spearheading one of my favorite activities of the year — one that creates connections that felt a little more important this year than they already had. ❤️
Earlier this week I found myself on medical leave in the middle of a snow storm in the middle of a pandemic, and feeling a threefold-level of boredom.
To quell the ennui, I decided to share a few cool Valentine gift ideas local to where I live on my Insta-stories, and the result is a great mix of products at various price points:
I look forward to compiling the Weird Valentines Day gift list each year — for the benefit of no one in particular.
It’s just fun for me to hunt for the strange and unusual and share it here, and there’s something to be said for consistency; this is year seven!
There’s no real theme to the weirdness this year; just some of the more interesting entrees into the Valentine Gift gamut. One might say the list has a pandemic-tinged flavor to it, featuring introspective literature, handmade crafts, nostalgia, and comfort food.
A Bound Collection of Pages
If you’ve ever muttered Cripes, you’re so damn literal to your loved one, look no further for an appropriate gift than Nathan W. Pyle’s Strange Planet. This cartoon compilation depicts all sorts of conversations, but written in formal-speak: reflective of the weirdness of human behavior.
Pyle also has other Strange Planet merch for sale at his website.
Spotted at Business Insider
…But Did You Pick a Peck?
Made by ArchMiniatures, these mini-pears can be singles (You’re pearfection!) or doubles (We’re the perfect pear!). They’re, cute, irreverent, and (according to ArchMiniatures) suitable for some car dashboards, which is definitely a trend I want to see.
Spotted at Etsy
Searching for a Reel Love
The vintage-lover — or any Gen Xer — will appreciate a personalized ViewMaster* and the hours of clicky joy it will bring.
* Not actually a ViewMaster, the brand-name for the Mattel toy. This is the Image3D, made by a small company in Oregon.
Spotted at Uncommon Goods
I’ve Got My Rib-eye on You
Heart-shaped steaks aren’t a new thing necessarily, but they seem to be experiencing a resurgence; perhaps because not many of us will be going out for a V-Day dinner, but still want to indulge. It’s potentially a great way to support local farms and butchers; also known as sweetheart steaks, they’re usually one cut of boneless strip or rib steak, expertly butterflied into a heart shape.
Spotted at 92.9 NiN
Huzzah and Hello, weirdos! Today marks the fifth annual Weird Valentine Gift post here at WriterJax, and this year is a good one. It’s almost as though society in general has, somehow, become more accepting of the fringe.
I kid. Still, as we head toward VD 2020, I give you five contenders for holiday gift-giving. Go forth and browse to your heart’s content!
Don’t Torture Yourself, Gomez.
Send your favorite horror-file, or least-favorite-person in general, a bouquet of Dirty Rotten Flowers this year, like The Morticia arrangement below. Bonus: the testimonial page on this website is gold, Jerry. Gold.
You Had Me at Au Gratin
For the pun-tacular person in your life who’s all ears, I give you the Potato Parcel. This item was actually featured on Shark Tank and has been sending spuds around the world ever since, including those adorned with photos of the recipient.
No one knows ’til death do we part like Jack and Sally. Let’s celebrate that love with gaudy-ass jewelry.
Put Some Pink in your Drink
This is too pretty not to share: pink chai tea from Lee.
The Rest is Gravy
No Valentines Day is complete without something unctuous, and when it comes to unctuous, I always vote gravy.