Well friends, we had a great time this past week! Lots of fun for all including a thrift shopping spree with my mom, another truffle making ladies’ night/board game night for Valentine’s day and an epic lion king birthday party for a friend that Julius attended complete with live exotic animals! And on top of all that, my family is visiting from all over the country this week including my brand new 2 week old niece! Woo!
Julius is testing out calling me “mommy”. I’ve been mama exclusively to this point, but during the last week or so he keeps throwing the word “mommy” in there every now and then. It confuses me every time. Much like when I first became a mother and in the hospital room they’d address me over the intercom as “mom”. I was confused the first several times as to why they were asking for my mom (which to be fair, my mom DOES work at the hospital on that floor, and everyone knew she was my mom). Either way, I loved being mama but I’m happy to be mommy! Though I’ve been warned that after “mama” and “mommy” come “mom” which just doesn’t sound right.
Speaking of things that don’t sound right, how about the title of this post? I googled that pun after I thought of it and NO HITS came up! Does that mean it’s bad or ingenious? It’s okay you don’t have to answer. Anyway, this year they are doing a Valentine’s card swap for Julius’ toddler room and I was ahead of the curve. I already had plans to make heart shaped toddler lacing toys for all the toddlers using shoelaces I found at the thrift store. I found the shoelaces in a bag marked $2 and it included at least 10 pairs of shoelaces. I really wanted to make the lacing toys out of recycled leather scraps, but I couldn’t find anything suitable. Instead I decided to make it out of the scrap hardboard I had left over from the trail map coasters I made a couple years ago. I am not skilled enough with the band saw yet to do heart shaped designs, so I had to improvise. The design for the Valentine cards and lacing toys is uniquely mine. I hope you like it!
Knots About You Toddler Lacing Toy
For each valentine you’ll need:
- 4″x4″ square of hardboard
- 1 shoelace with large aglets
- card stock
- Valentine card pattern here (includes 12 cards)
- Mark holes on one edge of your square on a line 1/2″ from the edge and parallel to the edge. Holes should be at 1/2″, 1 1/4″, 2″, 2 3/4″, 3 1/2″ on that line. Repeat markings for other 3 edges.
- Drill holes that you marked in step 1 with a 1/4″ drill bit. (I drilled 5 toddler lacing boards at a time)
- Drill one additional hole 1.25″ below an edge in the center. You’ll use this to lace up the toy as a heart.
- Sand around the drill holes and edges of the hardboard square. Then dust off thoroughly with a tack cloth.
- Assemble by threading a shoelace through the heart, starting at the hole you drilled in step 3. Thread halfway through this hole, then continue threading, doubling back when needed to form a heart. (See diagram here)
- Tie the excess shoelace into a bow on the back of the toy.
- Print out the sheet of valentines on one sheet of cardstock, having your printer set to print on both sides of the paper and automatically flip on the horizontal edge if it supports this. If not, print page one, then manually flip along the horizontal edge and reinsert into the printer. Print page two.
- Cut valentines into 3 strips 2.83″ x 11″ long, then turn and cut each strip into 4 rectangles 2.75″ long. (2.83″x2.75″).
- Hole punch the corner of each card.
- Thread a ribbon through the hole in the valentine and the hole in the top left of each toddler toy. Knot.
- Give to your toddler Valentine.