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Create Lasting Memories this Valentines Day

Surprises for all ages

It can be a challenge sometimes to impress your loved ones on Valentine's Day.  Maybe you have tired of the traditional candy and flowers routine. If you're plum out of unique ideas hopefully these will inspire you to start some new traditions. 


What can you do for the wee ones? Surprise your children with a sweet treat table. Keep it simple with a few favorite snacks and candies, or for a more extravagant display, use fresh flowers and create a handmade centerpiece.

To achieve this look start by placing the largest greenery on the bottom layer in a circle around the table. Next layer varying types of greenery on top of the first layer in shorter widths to achieve the final look. Next, add Valentine's Day mini cupcakes, chocolate-dipped Oreos, Valentine's Day cake with fresh strawberries, and Valentine's Day cookies for an inviting sweet treat table. 

To create the easy and eye-catching Valentine's Tree centerpiece, collect fallen branches and paint them white. Use a thrifted, repurposed white ceramic jar to assemble the branches for the base. Use a floral foam to stabilize the branches, and place moss at the top of the jar. You can use this homemade tree for any occasion as it’s sturdy, and just about anything can be hung on it.

Create heart ornaments to hang on your Valentine's Tree Centerpiece. These ornaments can be used as clue cards for a kid's Valentine's Day scavenger hunt. Instruct children to choose a heart on the tree with clues written on the back and then hunt for the treasures you have hidden around the house. Use recycled shipping boxes to create the heart base and paint them red and pink. For extra fun, and a personal touch, place the children's photo on the ornaments too.


Try this idea for your adult valentine. Set the table in a non-traditional casual setting—the coffee table in the living room. Layer pillows and cozy blankets on the ground for comfortable seating. Use two layers of fabric for the runner, and add a handmade floral arrangement as the centerpiece. To achieve this look, use a two-layer serving tray and layer flowers and stems to adorn the tray. Add grapes or berries to give a fuller and textured look. For a romantic ambiance, add candle sticks, and a bottle of wine. Ooh la la!

For a no-hassle dinner, order out and serve your favorite takeout in the comfort of your own home. Or if you like to cook together, Chef Jasper Mirabile Jr., chef-owner of Jasper’s Restaurant in Kansas City, Missouri provided a go-to pasta recipe perfect for a Valentine's Day in. 

“Capelli d’Angelo alla Nanni is a recipe my father, Jasper Sr., created and today is Jasper’s most-requested pasta dish. In the late 1960s, he ate this pasta in a restaurant in Italy and became intrigued with it, returning to the trattoria three nights in a row, trying to decipher the ingredients. While on the surface the recipe appears simple, believe me, it took many hours for my father to perfect this dish. When he returned home, he and my mother experimented with Jasper’s chefs until he said it was perfect. Customers requested the recipe for over 50 years, but my father would never give it out. It wasn’t until several years ago that we decided to share this delicious pasta recipe with our guests, in my father’s honor.” — Chef Jasper Mirabile Jr.

Regardless of the age of your valentine, I hope these ideas will help you to create lasting memories with those you love.

Capelli d’Angelo alla Nanni


8 oz. Barilla Capellini 

2 tsp. salted butter

4 oz. prosciutto ham

4 mushrooms, sliced thin

12 oz. Jasper's Marinara Sauce

4 oz. heavy cream

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

4 oz. Romano cheese


Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. 

Melt 2 tsp. butter in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add prosciutto and let it crisp, then add sliced mushrooms. Saute for two minutes.

Stir in marinara sauce and cream, red pepper flakes, peas to garnish, and Romano cheese. Bring to a light boil. Add cooked pasta and toss. Serve immediately. 

“Capelli d’Angelo alla Nanni is a recipe my father, Jasper Sr., created and today is Jasper’s most-requested pasta dish", says Chef Jasper Mirabile Jr.