The Love We Believe We Deserve

It’s the day after Valentine’s Day. Bring on the discount chocolates! 😉

The hubs and I didn’t do anything special this year, what with a baby on the way and our anniversary right around the corner. As we munched on fast food and searched for a semi-romantic movie on Netflix, I found myself thinking about my Valentine’s Days growing up.

My very first Valentine was my father. In fact, every Valentine’s Day, my sister and I would wake up to chocolates, flowers, and a sweet card from our daddy. And he wasn’t just great at Valentine’s Day. My dad was a rockstar all year long.

Every birthday, we each got a dozen roses in our favorite color. When he went away on business trips, he would always come back with a small treat or toy. Hugs, kisses, and I love you‘s were given daily. The poor man endured endless Disney movie marathons, and even let us paint his nails!

Most importantly, he was actively engaged and interested in our lives:  a shoulder to cry on, a debate partner to test our ideas, a friend to laugh and joke with, and a man we respected.

He was by no means wrapped around our fingers; the rules didn’t bend if we just asked daddy sweetly. And though he rarely spoiled us, he always made sure we knew we were loved — especially on Valentine’s Day, when so many women feel inadequate if they are not in a relationship.

What is it about this holiday that reduces accomplished and successful individuals to a single facet? Disregard all their unique talents and achievements. On Valentine’s Day, they are defined by one thing: their dating status. It’s such an easy trap to fall into, especially when we let our value as a person be determined from outside ourselves, instead of within.

All those sweet little things my daddy did were part of my parents’ larger plan to make sure we grew up with an unshakable sense of self-worth. What they both did so very well was teach us that we are always worthy of love and respect, no matter what.

“We accept the love we believe we deserve.”

The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Stephen Chbosky

Jello Fruit Snacks

I love fruit snacks!!! Always have, always will. So, when I saw this recipe from Six Sisters Stuff for DIY Jello Fruit Snacks on Pinterest, I couldn’t resist adding it to my Pinterest Challenge!

Here is what you need: whisk, saucepan, liquid measuring cup, rubber mold, unflavored gelatin, flavored Jello, and water.

Jello Fruit Snack Supplies

What a lovely coincidence that Valentine’s Day is coming up, and I just happened to own some heart shaped ice cube molds from IKEA that I have only ever used once! ♄

I used the Knox brand of unflavored gelatin which is packaged in small envelopes. You just need one package of Jello, but I selected my four favorite flavors of Jello to make several versions.

Recipe:

  • one (3 oz) package Jello, any flavor
  • two (.25 oz) envelopes unflavored gelatin
  • 1/3 cup water

Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved. Pour into molds and allow to set at least 20 minutes.

It seems like a very small amount of water, but it will all mix together and dissolve. Just keep whisking. And whisking. 🙂 Use a small spoon to fill the tray. I only filled the hearts halfway and came out with 20 fruit snacks, about one and a half trays. The trick here is to work quickly. If you pause too long, let’s say to take pictures for your blog, the last few spoonfuls will be mighty goopy!

So, was this a WIN or a FAIL?

Six Sisters Stuff's fruit snacks.

Six Sisters Stuff’s fruit snacks.

Shiny Happy Peebles' fruit snacks.

Shiny Happy Peebles’ fruit snacks.

I’d say a WIN! Flavor-wise, they taste really yummy. I think if I had cooked them longer, they might have become clearer, but in my opinion, they don’t look half bad! 🙂

Except for this one.

This actually looks like a human heart. Gross.

This one actually looks like a human heart.

Update: I made the other flavors and tried cooking them a little longer; definitely improved the look and the texture!

Strawberry, orange, grape, and watermelon!

Strawberry, orange, grape, and watermelon!