Category Archives: About Us

Valentine’s Day Crafts and Traditions

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Written by Tonia as a part of the We’re Moms Too series

Picture it…Valentine’s Day…1980 something.  Excitement fills the classroom as you enter with your book bag stuffed with cards you carefully selected and addressed for your classmates.    Gleefully you walk around the room dropping them into each hand-crafted mailbox.  Later in the day, room moms would magically appear with heart shaped cookies and punch and, if you were lucky, the class might get to play a Valentine themed game.

Sweet memories….

Fast forward to the modern day.  My kids are in elementary school and the Valentine cards and mailboxes are far more elaborate and so are their parties.  Pizza, snacks, goody bags and games occupy these little ones for the last hour of their school day before this holiday.  My favorite part of class parties are the crafts.  Usually it’s a cute idea that was plucked from thousands of pins on Pinterest.  Thanks to this wonderful website, parents everywhere have creative ideas at their fingertips.  Have a boat load of toilet paper rolls you need to re-purpose, why not make some Valentine owls?  Do you have kids who love the Minions?  Make their Valentine mailbox into a Minion!  The possibilities are endless.

{click on the images to be directed to the instructions for each craft}

Owl Valentine Minion Valentine
Fox Valentine Pretzel hearts

This year we made the fox out of hearts!Valentine's Day Crafts
What are your favorite Valentine crafts?

About Tonia:
toniaTonia is a wife, mom of three energetic kiddos and two four legged friends who enjoys quiet walks in the aisles of Target.   Born and raised in the Cleveland area, she is a sports fanatic who loves all things Nashville.  Tonia is the Digital Analyst at Step2.

Gaining Another Mom and Dad

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Written by Nicole as a part of the We’re Kids Too series

In less than nine months, I’m getting married and becoming a part of another family. So many emotions have come over me as each day passes and I get closer to becoming a Mrs. I’m excited for all the new adventures that married life entails, but most of all I’m thrilled to gain another mom and dad. I’ve mentioned before that I come from a single parent household and, for the past 25 years, my mom has done everything she can to take care of me, in addition to taking on the role of both parents. She did a wonderful job and I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for her guidance and support.

When I first met my future mother and father-in-law, I was so nervous; I really wanted them to like me and know how much I cared for their son. From the moment we met, we hit it off. I felt like I was already talking to my family. They’re generous, wise and personable; all that I could ever ask for in my future in-laws. Not only have they made me feel included in their lives, but they’ve also included my mom in family celebrations and outings. I guess you could say my mom and I are a package deal.

It’s truly a blessing that our families get along and we’re able to spend so much time together. I never imagined that I could ever call someone else “mom” and I really never thought I would have the opportunity to finally call someone “dad.” It makes me smile knowing I have such a bond with my fiancé’s parents. After all, they’ve made my fiancé into the man he is, the man that I fell in love with.

This is a hectic and chaotic time, as we plan the wedding, but honestly, we couldn’t have made it this far without the support and help of our parents. As I walk down the aisle, I will know all this stress will be worth it and I won’t be sad (even though I know I’m going to cry) because I’m not leaving my family to join another, we are combining our two families together. And I’m gaining another mom and dad!

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About Nicole
NicoleNicole is a DIY advocate, amateur chef, runner, soon-to-be wife and pet lover. She is the proud owner of two large cats that she claims act like dogs. If Nicole isn’t cook or crafting, she is out exploring new restaurants and attractions around Cleveland, the city that has taken her heart and anchored her to the ground. Nicole is the Digital Online Merchandiser at Step2.

 

Don’t Touch the Tree!

we're moms too

Written by Ashley as part of the We’re Moms Too series.

For the past six years, my husband and I have spent the Sunday after Thanksgiving going to a tree farm to cut down our Christmas tree. Having come from an artificial tree family, this has been one of the highlights of my adult Christmases.

We’ve had many tree adventures over the past six years. The most memorable was when the tree fell off the roof on the highway. I still remember the feeling of snow falling on our noses and the wind gusting, from both the sky and the 65+ MPH cars flying past, as we attempted to prop that baby back up on the roof. The rope had broken and the only thing we had was a tarp, so we rolled it like a breadstick, threw it over the top of the car, secured it in the side doors and drove 15 MPH in the berm until the next exit. Good times.

Now that we have a family of our own, the traditions, and memorable moments, continue – like the four times that the tree toppled over last year. This year, for the first time, we had two kiddos in tow to cut down the tree. My 3 month old son was wrapped all snuggly in his carrier, while my husband and daughter meandered through the forest in search of the perfect Christmas tree.

Tree-farm

It’s crazy what a difference a year makes. Last year, my daughter couldn’t even walk. This year, she was running around the trees proudly proclaiming “Tree! Home!” In toddler language, this means “We’re taking a tree home!” This led to “Tree! Car!” when we strapped it to the roof, this year securely.

After naps and the football game (I’d like to personally thank the NFL for game time starts at 1pm for us parents of toddlers), it was time to put up the tree. Of course we ran into a snag – the tree was closer to 11 feet tall than the 9 feet we had estimated. After more chopping and slicing, it fit in its designated corner, ready to decorate. My husband brought out the step ladder for my daughter to climb to help hang ornaments. She pointed to her preferred destination for each, clustering about 20 ornaments on four branches. After she hung a few herself, all she wanted to do was touch and explore. I tried explaining to her that she could place the ornaments, but not touch them. That went over well – telling a toddler not to touch something always results in listening – right!?

Trimming Tree

At the end of a long day, everything fell into place (luckily, not the tree). It was exciting to be able to share the memories of the past 13 years (before becoming mom and dad) that hung on our tree with our daughter, from “our first Christmas” in 2001 when we were Juniors in high school to the key chains we turned into ornaments in 2008 when we were recent college grads living on powdered potatoes; and this year, we’ll be adding “baby’s 1st Christmas.” Nothing is better than seeing years of memories aglow right there in our home.

WM2_AshleyAbout Ashley
Ashley is a self-proclaimed fashionista, social media maven, and proud mama of two. She is the Digital Communications Manager at Step2 and you may have recently communicated with her if you’ve chatted with Step2 on Facebook or Twitter.