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Valentine's Day is a fun holiday for kids, particularly because of all the sweet treats that are available during the first two weeks of February. So invite your child's class or playgroup friends over to indulge in a celebration of all things pink and heart-shaped. Make your child's event live up to her friends' expectations by providing plenty of good eats. Your guests can enjoy them at the party or take them home to munch on later.
Valentine Parfait Bar
Little guests will love customizing sweet treats -- even if they are healthier than cookies and candy. Sue George, owner and founder of Harvard Sweet Boutique in Hudson, Massachusetts, recommends letting the kids make personal parfaits featuring their favorite fixings. Provide each party attendee with a stemmed plastic glass, then set out bowls of pink and white yogurt, various types of sliced fruit, marshmallows and sprinkles.
"Perhaps serve a slice of angel food cake to each guest as well," George suggests. "These yummy parfaits won't disappoint." The kids will have almost as much fun digging into their creations as they did making them.
Chocolate lollipops are easy to make and fun to eat, and they can be packaged with cellophane and ribbon to create beautiful party favors. George recommends pouring melted chocolate into molds shaped like hearts or cupids and placing lollipop sticks into the chocolate before it sets. Make a combination of lollipops in white, milk and dark chocolate, then wrap them in festive packaging. The final products can be placed in small vases for decoration during your party or you can send them home with the children so their sweet Valentine's Day memories last a little longer.
Decorate Your Own Favors
Cookies and cupcakes make ideal favors, especially when they are decorated during the party. Lyss Stern, founder of Divalysscious Moms, an event and party resource for moms in New York City, suggests having kids decorate confections that were baked and frosted ahead of time. "Kids will love getting creative and competitive as they strive to create their edible works of art," Stern says. "The best part is that kids can take their yummy creations home in a goody bag at the end of the party."
Let party guests pick from an assortment of sugar cookies and cupcakes frosted with white, red and pink icing. Put extra icing in pastry bags or squirt bottles so the kids can make designs with various colors. Also set out bowls of sprinkles, candy, colored sugar, chocolate chips and any other favorites for decorating treats.
Ice cream is a rare treat during the cold month of February. Surprise and delight your guests by serving them ice cream sandwiches with a festive twist. Use large heart-shaped cookie cutters to create the outer layers of the sandwiches. You can experiment with different types of cookie batter, such as chocolate chip, peanut butter or sugar. Once each batch is completely cooled, spread a scoop of strawberry ice cream between two cookies. Wrap the sandwiches in plastic wrap and keep them frozen until your party guests are ready for dessert.