Food Ideas for Valentine’s Day

I love creativity, especially when it comes to

food design ideas during the holidays!

The following are some creative ideas I found on the internet and Pinterest, for Valentine’s Day.

They inspired me so I’m sharing them with you… 

Enjoy the Creativity!



Red ice cubes in a white drink, or…


white ice cubes in a red drink?
Either way, it’s heartfelt! LOL

add a marble for heart shaped valentine cupcakes

Add marble before filling to create heart-shaped cupcakes

val cocoa

Cocoa with Marshmallow Heart –
cut from the large Kraft
s’mores marshmallows

courtesy of Bakarella


Cut slit in cookie prior to baking


Cinnamon Hearts made from slices of refrigated cinnamon rolls

courtesy of Land o Lakes

courtesy of Land o Lakes

heart eggs

My kind of breakfast!

pizza in heart shape

pizza hearts

Valentine's Day Recipe - Salad with tomato hearts

Valentine's Day Recipe - making heart tomatoes

Directions for making heart-shaped tomato



These are mine!
Look for the simple, easy directions
under my RECIPE tab.

val fruit

val day fruit


The Seasonal Home “News”

There’s a lot of great things happening at…

The Seasonal Home!

a heart

Last week, we zoomed right past

6,000 Fans

on our Facebook Community Page!


If you’re on Facebook and  haven’t “LIKED” The Seasonal Home’s Facebook Community Page yet, you’ve missed out on a lot of FREE PRIZES as well as all of the “extra” inspiration posted there, so please… JOIN US! 🙂

We will be launching a brand new look on our web site in February!

website header

Although it will still look very familiar…   when you search a Season, Holiday or Topic, it will be much easier to navigate.  This will all make sense when the new design launches this month.

We’ve been featured again!

The Seasonal Home is being featured (through Valentine’s Day) on a huge, international website –
Owned by NBC / Universal, iVillage is the largest content-driven community for women online reaching 30 + million unique visitors per month (comScore).  Everyday women come to iVillage to connect, share advice, find life tools and engage in conversations that matter most to them in areas of Pregnancy & Parenting, Health, Food, Entertainment, Home & Garden and Beauty & Style.
The Seasonal Home is showcased in their “Featured” section, as part of a slide show titled:

Add Love to Every Room! 21 Ways to Decorate Your House for Valentine’s Day

(click on the above link to check it out!)
As if that were not exciting enough….
my design was chosen as the slide show COVER
AND they featured 3 of my blog posts.
I am so honored!!!

ivillage cover

So, thank you for supporting, spreading the word about and staying tuned to


2013 is going to be a great year!


Shabby Chic Valentine Fireplace

[As always, click on any photo to view it larger]

Time to decorate the fireplace for Valentine’s Day!

It can look so much nicer to hang something large and Valentine themed over (and under) a mantel full of decorations because it enlarges the look of your festive display.  But, one problem is that Valentine themed art is very hard to find and can be expensive so why not create your own?

Step 1 – search your local thrift store for a wooden frame.

A wooden frame can be any color because it’s easy to paint.  I found this one last year (it was a dirty, dusty brown color) and painted it white to create a shabby chic look to use in some Spring themed decor.

For Valentine’s Day, I added a red, beaded garland (using spots of hot glue, here & there to secure it) to the frame temporarily and displayed a lightweight wreath of roses from a bow and ribbon in the center of the open frame.  Viola!

HELPFUL HINT:  I hung the frame on an existing nail, but you could also attach the bow to the top of the frame and lean it against the wall.

s_fireplace frame_closeup

LIVING ROOM - Tree Skirt Closeup

Step 2 – “new-purpose” old decorations!

A common thread you will notice in my style of decorating is that I re-use (or “new-purpose”) decorations I already own and many times, for a different holiday!  Do you remember the faux fern I used to border the snow under my Fairy themed Christmas tree a couple of years ago?  Check out how nice it looks along the back of the mantel with last year’s Dollar Store roses and a $1.00/pkg. of pink, glittered hearts (Dollar Tree) tucked in.  It serves as a beautiful backdrop to my sweet Cupid, 2 heart-shaped topiaries and faux rose petals on the mantel.

Roses with Lime Green (Residential Client)

And just in case you were wondering how roses might look on a tree, for Christmas, check out the rose-themed tree I designed for a client.

Also, if you have a large Valentine sign (like this “BE MINE” from Home Goods), you can use it to decorate the front of a mantel, by removing the hanger and using “Tack-it” (temporary gummy adhesive) to secure it in place for the holiday.  I just love how these 2 additions simply & inexpensively enlarged my Valentine’s Day mantel design.


Step 3 – Don’t forget the details!  I’ve had my sweet, little Angel for a long time, but this year (for the first time) I happened to notice that she had a tiny bird on her shoulder.  Keeping in mind that LOVE comes in all shapes & sizes, I used my hot glue gun to add a small heart to his beak because… of course, he would bring her a little Valentine’s Day greeting!


And if you like the little glass votive candle holder I placed in front of my Cherub, it was super easy to create!  The glass votive is a plain one I purchased at the dollar store and added the word “LOVE” to, using my favorite self-adhesive vinyl letters (see office supply stores for these, in all fonts & sizes).  You could also use a stencil and paint or etching cream to add a heartfelt sentiment.  The candle was even a bargain because I purchased it after Christmas for pennies!

Enjoy the creativity, and…



Creative, Re-purposed Decorations for Valentine’s Day

[As always, click on any photo to view it larger]

Call me creative or just plain lazy (LOL)….  but this year, I kept up a few of my Christmas decorations and re-purposed them, with a “Valentine” look.

Remember this pretty garlandfoyer_full_2_s

Once I removed the ribbon, “Merry Christmas” sign and the tabletop decorations, I noticed how beautiful and wintry the greenery looked, so I just added some glittered red hearts (wall hangings cut-apart from the dollar section of Target), red velvet heart picks from The Dollar Store and my “smooch” stickers (purchased a few years ago).

Total cost to take it from Christmas to Valentine’s Day: $3.00


And remember this tree?kitchen_tree_sjpg

I replaced the hanging ornaments (on the curtain rod) with a simple valance I sewed, using $3.00 worth of fabric from Wal-mart and added a $3.00 felt heart garland from Target to trim it out.

The tree ornaments are 3-piece, glittered Valentine wall hangings (from the dollar section of Target) that I cut apart and used alongside cardboard hearts (removed from a $4.00 Walgreen’s wreath).  I added one new thing that softened the look of the white tree and made a wonderful garland – inexpensive light pink feather boas!  For the base, I made a pink cupcake liner (from poster board) to replace the blue (Christmas) one and exchanged the glittered ornaments, tucked in the pink frosting (spray painted polyester batting) with sprinkles, which I made from leftover poster board and paper.  The Christmas tree was bright and happy, whereas the Valentine’s Day tree is soft and sweet!


I’ll be hosting a Valentine themed meeting next month, so I test-drove the table cover, dishes and chair decorations to see how they’ll look too.  I’m loving this lush, pink color!  And by the way, the chair decorations are nothing more than another glittered “Conversation Heart” wall hanging I also found in the dollar section at Target and tied on the back of the chair with an inexpensive piece of ribbon.

s_kitchen full_w chair backs

It was fun to fill my cabinets with Valentine goodies too and I re-purposed some Christmas decorations there… can you spot them?

s_cab left  s_cab rt

Remember this cookie tree from Christmascookie tree

I covered the star (on the top) with a couple of the cardboard hearts and of course, placing it next to a couple of Valentine cupcakes creates an instant Valentine’s Day treat!

s_cookie n cupcake display

Remember this cake plate with a red bow, from Christmas? foyer_santa_s

It’s just as cute under a Department 56 Valentine house!  s_cab left_bottom

I use my apothecary jars year round, including Christmas.  I changed the candy, in several of them to Conversation Hearts (for Valentine’s Day) but kept the pastel jelly beans in one because the colors were perfect!

s_conv hrts  s_cab rt_top

Here’s an idea you might want to try – use apothecary jars as frames by adding a few Conversation Hearts and tucking your photos or vintage Valentine Cards inside.  You could display photos of you and your sweetie or your kids/grandkids.  It’s just a different way to display photos or other keepsakes without purchasing a separate & costly Valentine’s Day frame.  And hey… it makes a real conversation piece too!

s_cab rt_bottom

Stay tuned for a Shabby Chic idea for Valentine’s Day (blog post) next, coming up in a couple of days!


Enjoy the Creativity…


A Cozy Valentine’s Day


So many places are still chilly during the Valentine’s Day season, so here is a cozy spot to curl up with a book, magazine or on the lap of your sweetheart.  And if you compare these photos to The Seasonal Home’s 2011 Christmas photos, you’ll notice that many Christmas decorations were re-purposed to create our Valentine’s Day scene, including:

White Christmas Tree, White Christmas Wreath. 3 Red Glitter Cones, and a Planter (tree is in) has been spray painted white.


Enjoy the Creativity!


Filling Apothecary Jars – without emptying your wallet

[CLICK on any photo for a larger view & SEARCH “Apothecary Jar”, on my site (search window above), for even MORE ideas!]

Filling Apothecary or Glass Jars, for the seasons & holidays, is easy, especially if you’re using large items, like faux squash (for Fall) or ornaments (for Christmas), etc.  However, if you’re using a small filler, such as holiday candy (e.g. jelly beans, conversation hearts or candy corn), it can be quite pricey to completely fill up a 14″ tall jar like this one. 

But, I have an easy way to fake-fill these larger jars!  Simply roll-up poster board, thin cardboard or card stock into a cylinder-shape, measuring apx.  1/2″ less (in diameter) than the diameter of your Apothecary or Glass jar.  Trim the height (of the poster board cylinder) to a height apx. 1″ below the top of your jar (without the lid).  Stapling or using tape to hold your poster board dimensions will help it stay in place while you’re trying to accomplish the next step.  Insert your poster board cylinder into the jar, also placing a (slightly smaller – in diameter) container in the center of the poster board cylinder (I used a tupperware container), which will keep the poster board or card stock from collapsing under the weight of the candy as you fill the open 1/2″ space between the jar and cardboard.

Now, all you have to purchase is apx. ONE bag of candy to fill the void between the poster board and the side of the jar.

Another way you can accomplish this is to find a cylinder vase that is 1/2″ less (in diameter) and no taller than your jar.  If you are lucky enough to find that perfect of a fit, it is truly the best solution.


Valentine “Memories” Wreath

[CLICK on any photo for a LARGER VIEW]

Often, I am invited by different groups of young Moms to speak about the importance of practicing family traditions (the subject of my book).  This week, the group I spoke to also asked me to help them create a memorable Valentine’s Day wreath… one that would mean something, for years to come.

I purchased a 24″ foil, heart-shaped wreath and several small, silver frames (see bridal section of any craft or party store).  In each of the frames, simply add family (and pet) photos and attach them to the wreath, using red pipe cleaners twisted around the frame stand and then, the wreath frame.  You might also consider adding a favorite family “saying” if you want to add an additional frame.  My favorite – “Family is a gift, wrapped in sweet memories and trimmed in LOVE”

Then, I found “foamie” hearts that had a filigree edge, which allowed me to use fishing line to suspend it in the center of the wreath, by tying 4 pieces to the heart and also, to the wreath frame.  I also purchased a box of “foamie” self-adhesive embellishments, including alpha letters, which we added to the “foamie” heart before hanging it into the center of the wreath.

This “personalized” Valentine’s Day wreath turned out to be a very memorable design that can be updated (with new photos) as the years go by.  I also suggested they could add some  individually wrapped chocolate kisses (maybe one week’s worth) to the wreath (using small dabs of hot glue to lightly attach them), which can be removed, each day, as a Valentine’s Day countdown.


Flower Cones ~ Buy OR Make!

[click on any photos for a larger view]

On a recent shopping trip to Pier One, I spotted these adorable flower-filled, paper cones beautifully accenting the back of one of their gorgeous patio chairs.

I immediately fell in love with how fresh, pretty and decorative they were and could picture them on the back of a chair for – Valentine’s Day, a Spring Tea , Easter celebration or Summer get-together.  I could also see different versions (see photos) of these at a kid’s Halloween party with take-home treats,  Thanksgiving as a vertical horn of plenty or with Fall flowers & tiny pumpkins and finally, at Christmas, full of peppermint or any other holiday goodies. 

If these Pier 1 cuties match your look or decor, as well as your budget ($9.95 each), then by all means, head to Pier One and make your purchase! However, if you want this look, but want to customize it (for another season)  or  have too large of a family gathering to justify purchasing  a large quantity, you can make a similar version by creating a pattern (found on the internet) or for an even quicker approach:

1. Gather sheets of pretty, patterned scrapbook or plain pastel card stock paper and punch 2 (either vertical or horizontal) holes in one corner.

2. Cut a length of think ribbon the length you will need to thread it through the punched holes and around your chair back, in a bow.

3 & 4. Roll your paper into a cone shape and staple it in the back (where it won’t show).  Neatly trim off any excess paper that shows. [hint: if you take this cone shape apart afterward, you can then use it for a pattern].

5 & 6. Add any ribbon or other embellishments to the cone or simply trim it in a unique way around the top rim.

7. When done, fill it with a complimentary fresh or silk flower, shells, candy, specialty tea bags and a tea bag press, cosmetic samples… you name it… just use your imagination!

8. Use the threaded ribbon to attach your cone to the back of a chair, on a Christmas tree, from a chandelier… wherever your need is… here’s a review of the steps in photos:

“Simpler” Valentine’s Day Decorating Ideas

Sometimes, I just want to keep my holiday decorations simple (I know… that’s hard to believe!) LOL   It’s usually when I know family will be out-of-town or I’ll be MIA, a lot, from the house.  So, when my home life is more minimal, my decorations reflect that as well.  Below is an example of a couple of those simpler decorating ideas, for Valentine’s Day.

On my living room fireplace, all I added was a $10 wreath (, a $5 felt heart garland ( and a $5 candle & holder (  And in my foyer, I hung a sparkly pair of cupids – $5 ( – from a white ribbon and placed some “Lip Smack” (removable) stickers $2 at – on the surrounding mirror, with another $10 Big Lots wreath on the opposing wall.  Simple, yet still pretty…  HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!



"LIP SMACK" Stickers (close-up)

New Twist on my Valentine Yard Decor

Those of you who are familiar with my blog may remember this Valentine yard decorating idea, which I posted a simpler version of a year ago (see Original Post under VALENTINE’S DAY Category, on right).    But, this year, I had a few more candy canes to add into the mix, courtesy of a yard sale find.  Yea!  My display could grow & maybe cover the WHOLE garden bed eventually.

I was SO excited to add them to my Valentine yard display, but suddenly, I realized something was wrong when I took them out of their box…. the new candy canes  were not only a little larger but are mostly clear with a thin red stripe, whereas the candy canes I already have are mostly red.  (drat!)  No matter how hard I tried, I could not come up with a good way to mix them in the yard, mainly because (as you will find, if you try this idea) the sets typically come with an odd number of canes so the last one has to connect to the first one to complete a heart shape. 

Then, it dawned on me – why do they ALL have to go into the yard?  So, I hung the new sets on my shutters and it created an even more interesting yard display.  I simply had to share it (photos below) and hopefully, any new candy cane sets (I come across at future yard sales) will match my old ones so I can eventually fill the entire garden bed.  Something to look forward to! 🙂


Getting Darker....

NIGHT View (bad photo... sorry)

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