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Friday, February 11, 2011

Not So Sweet Hearts for Valentine’s Day!

Play-dough Valentines

It is a sad state in the educational system that homemade treats are no longer permitted at school holiday parties.  This is especially true for Middle-Class Martha, whom has hundreds of chocolate molds for all occasions.   Valentine’s Day being one of my favorites.  

I dislike that parents substitute the lack of homemade treats with mountains of Candy.   Enough Simple Carbohydrates to produce a Sugar Rush and then CRASH to Rival any stock market volatility in our country’s history.  

Two years ago, I decided to make the kids’ Homemade Play-dough Valentines instead of buying candy treats.   They are pretty and contain ZERO Sugar.  We cut the dough into heart shapes and stamped them with craft stamps and non-toxic ink.   We wrapped each one in a plastic bag with ribbons and the kids LOVED THEM!    I was asked to create a station for my Pre-K child’s class party and the whole class got to design and take home their own.    It was a huge hit. 

I am not anti-sugar.   I just don’t like to see an entire hawaiian sugar-cane plantation’s worth of treats on my son’s plate at a holiday party.  My kids still attach a little candy with their Valentines sometimes but I don’t buy 30 cupcakes for the classroom parties anymore.  With all the Chocolate, Cookies and Sweetheart conversation candy, people forget… You don’t need Sugar to celebrate Love 

 Middle-Class Martha doesn't do anything middle of the road.

Kayden dressed like a Rock Star for Valentines Day with his Valentines Stage Box! 
We got the foam pieces at Michael's Craft Store.

Kayden's Valentines were Guitars attached to Pop Rocks!

Play-dough Treats for the class party instead of Cupcakes.

Homemade Play-Dough Valentine Recipe:
6 cups Flour
3 cups Salt
2 Tablespoons Cream of Tartar
2 Tablespoons Vegetable Oil
6 cups Water
10 drops food coloring
2 packets of Kool-aid

Combine Dry ingredients in a large pan

Add Vegetable oil and stir

Color the water before adding to the pan (this makes sure your play-dough is evenly colored)

I like to heat the water in the microwave to decrease dissolving time.

Add food coloring (I like the darker pink color food coloring makes)

Add Kool-aid (I like the smell of Cherry Kool-aid)

We used sugar-free Kool-Aid sticks.

Add Kool-Aid mixture to the dry ingredients in the Pot.

Stir constantly and heat over medium heat until a ball of dough forms

COOL the play-dough then knead on a floured surface

The kids will not be able to keep there hands out of the warm play-dough.

Roll out play-dough.
Cut into heart shapes with a cookie cutter.
Stamp with craft stamps and non-toxic ink.

Wrap in Plastic bags (play-dough will dry out otherwise.)
Store the rest of your play-dough in an air-tight container.


Middle-Class Martha



  1. Wait, do the kids EAT the playdough? Is it edible?

  2. Let's just say it won't harm them if they did consume a little (for our paste eaters out there that like a little variety in their diet).

    The large amount of salt used probably would not taste good.
    I would discourage kids from eating it.