The shortest month of the year contains one extra day this year. Use the extra minutes of February 29 to share hugs, kisses, love, and fun with the ones you treasure the most. Make it an extra-special season of love with heartfelt gestures, treats, and activities throughout the month of February. Create unique family celebrations and add some of these wild and crazy ones below.
➤ Play More Cards Day – Take some time this month to complete this activity. Use cardstock to cut out 52 card-shaped rectangles for each family member, using a different color of cardstock for each person. Spend time around the table together decorating the back of each card with stickers, artistic drawings, or photos. Label the front of each card appropriately with suits and numbers to complete a deck of cards. If you choose to do so, cover the cards with clear contact paper to protect them and help them last longer. Once you’ve completed the decks over the course of several evenings of working together, play a favorite card game or learn a new one. Or, create your own never-before-played card game.
➤ National Toast Day – Prepare a toasty dinner together on a cold night to welcome this festivity. Prepare a buffet of favorite toast toppings, like jelly, honey, peanut butter, chicken salad, pimento cheese, egg salad, cream cheese and fruit pieces, and so on. Toast bread until it’s crispy and browned. Use heart-shaped cookie cutters to cut shapes from the toast. Make sandwiches with two heart pieces or use one for an open-faced sandwich. Use smaller heart cookie cutters to make several mini-sandwiches from each piece of toast. Use the cut-off pieces of bread like croutons to dip into honey or jam so that no bread goes to waste. Be sure to read some books from the Peanut Butter and Cupcake picture book series.
➤ Polar Bear Day – Create a fun craft to celebrate these magnificent creatures. Use a white paper plate for a polar bear face. Glue stretched cotton ball pieces over the entire paper plate. Glue in place these construction paper features: black circles for eyes, a black triangle for a nose, and six small black dots for whisker spots. Then use two short pieces of black craft pipe cleaner to curve downward from the nose for a mouth. Add white construction paper ears in place, also. After completing the craft, pull up a documentary that includes polar bear life and enjoy the footage together.
➤ Be Humble Day – Think of someone this month who might have a special need and do something to solve the situation, but do so anonymously. Pick up pine cones on the sly, supply new shoes for kids in a financially-strapped family, or leave a restaurant gift card in an envelope on a co-workers desk. Involve the whole family in the activity; do so with a humble spirit and joyful heart, and share love with others this month.
➤ Leap Year Day – Play games outside that involve leaping and jumping and hopping to enjoy an extra day this year. Have a race to see who can leap across the yard the farthest with 29 leaps. Jump rope for 29 jumps on the driveway. Leap over obstacles in the yard, like leapfrog, and time each person to see who completed the course in the shortest time. End the outside active time with 29 sips of lemonade, 29 raisins or pretzels or other small snacks, and 29 hugs and kisses for the win.
Use every minute this month and every day, especially the extra one, to celebrate those you love most. Treasure time together and turn every moment into a lasting memory. Happy February, friends!
Statesboro native Julie Lavender is the author of Strength for All Seasons: A Mom’s Devotional of Powerful Verses and Prayers and Children’s Bible Stories for Bedtime.