A Sock-Hoppin’ Valentine Party

Valentine’s Day is coming up, and you know what that means…

party time!

If you’re new to Mrs. Gore’s Diary, let me fill you in on the past 10 years. Since becoming a grandmother, my mom has made it a practice to host fun “class parties” for her grandkids. It gives the kids – all of whom are homeschooled – a chance to celebrate with their cousins, and it is such a blessing to their mamas who usually just have one job: show up!

The parties vary. We’ve had Easter parties, Halloween parties, a Christmas baking party, a 12-12-12 party at 12:12 p.m….

but we always have a Valentine party.

I think it must be one of her favorites, and I can’t remember a Valentine’s Day growing up when my mom didn’t deck out the table with special candies and gifts; because of her, I’m a pretty big fan of February 14th myself! Especially now that I have children of my own.

Last year, she decided to give Valentine’s Day a twist and hosted a simple and fun 1950’s-inspired party. The celebration was at my house, and the children were instructed to dress in whatever 50’s-style clothes we could come up with in our closets. And Mom took care of the rest!


Before the party started, we took a few family pictures in the dining room. Gideon’s “costume” was easy: jeans and a white t-shirt. Rebekah (left) wore a shirtdress with a pink cardigan, and Betsie (in the middle) was the perfect size for her cousin Abigail’s poodle skirt from a Halloween long, long ago…


I have to show this one, too, because when Rebekah saw it as I was going through pictures for this post, she laughed a little and said “Oh, my hair is always flowing like that…”

Confident, much?


and Amy’s crew (Abel, Anna, Kate and Abigail) looked so precious with their neck- and hair-ties and cardigans!


Anna and Gid, Valentines for life…or at least until they realize they’re too related to get hitched. 


“Best fweinds” Kate and Rebekah.


My mom (a child of the ’50’s) whisked Gideon to the back to give him a real 1950’s ‘do. Here’s the front…


And here’s the back.

(I was already in love with this boy but this hairdo got me all shook up!)


The kids congregated around the dining table…


where Amy (playing waitress) came to take their burger orders.


On the menu was heart-shaped hamburgers (you have to admire a woman who can make shapes out of raw meat), french fries…


and yummy, beautiful strawberry milkshakes!


 The meal was served ’50’s style in burger baskets lined with Valentine tissue paper.


And now a few pictures of children happily eating and slurping…





When lunch was over, it was time to play some games.

First, the limbo…


then, a rockin’ rollin’ dance party…


then a hilarious, knee-slappin’ game of spin the bottle…


and then we played Valentine Bingo.

Each child was given a Bingo card (free printables here!) and a pile of mini marshmallows to mark their numbers…



whoever won got to pick a toy from a prize table my mom set up. And, although this isn’t always our game-playing philosophy, each child won TWICE, until all the prizes were gone. It was, after all, a holiday!


After Bingo, Amy gave a bubble-gum-blowing demonstration…

IMG_0025Then all the kids were given a piece of bubble gum to experiment with…


after some perseverance (and maybe a few tears?), Abigail succeeded in blowing her first bubble! Obviously, my mom’s parties are as educational as they are fun.


And then we wrapped the party up with some more fun pictures…




Pinterest is full of breathtaking and professional parties, and while they are inspiring, they can also be kind of intimidating; I hope this encourages you to remember that laid-back and fuss-free parties still exist and that you don’t have to empty your college fund to celebrate with the children in your life. Come to think of it, I think I prefer my mom’s parties to the professionals’..

maybe because they remind me of growing up, safe and happy, under her nurturing wing.

Can’t WAIT to see what she comes up with this year!


For more Valentine inspiration, click on the Valentine tab in my blog’s menu or visit my Pinterest Valentine board.

5 thoughts on “A Sock-Hoppin’ Valentine Party

  1. The picture of Gid and the girls and the lips… His eyes melted my heart. They are so beautiful!!!
    This post is so sweet. Your mom is so great!!

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