I’m dedicating this week’s download post to all things Valentine’s Day! Swapping out my usually book list with some of my all-time favorite romantic-reads, rounding up a few local brands with lovely Valentine’s gifts, sharing kid-friendly ideas for celebrating the holiday, and pulling some sweet treat recipes to add to your sweetheart menu from my archives! Valentine’s with Kids. Since this is Jane’s first year in school, I feel like all of our holidays have been supercharged with her excitement as she learns about each one. We’ve been “making valentines” daily for her classmates, friends and family – the glue and sequins and stickers have been flowing!  I got a few treats to give to her Valentine’s Day — a Peppa the Pig book and some heart stickers — and have a special heart plate that I’m going to use to make some heart-shaped pancakes for breakfast. I also shared a kid-friendly Valentine’s snack plate idea on the blog recently if you’re looking for a fun way to give lunch some serious heart-eyes!

Delicious Desserts. I think we can all agree that Valentine’s Day is a perfect occasion to dig into the sweets, and I have a fun few ideas from the archive that are perfect treats for the holiday. My favorite is a Valentine’s Day Grazing Board filled with a tasty balance of sweet and savory bites (cheese and candy on one plate? Yes please!). Loaded Chocolate Chip Cookies full of Valentine’s Day candy, pretzels and toffee are an indulgent dessert that everyone will love, and for a chilly V-day sip, I have homemade heart marshmallows that will dress up a mug of hot cocoa.

Local Valentine’s Gift Ideas. We’re not big gift givers for Valentine’s Day, but I love a sentimental card and sharing a nice dinner at home. My exception to the no-gifts rule is typically a box of my husband’s favorite McCrea’s Candies caramels — they have a delicious sampler for Valentine’s Day with some of their chocolate flavors. Seacoasts Sweets is another one of my favorite local treats, their chocolate patties are heavenly. If sweets aren’t your thing, I recently got a beautiful sample of Bluehill Fragrances. They’re such lovely scents, and I adore the package design and nod to Boston-area locations — they’d make a lovely Galentine’s present or a treat for yourself!

Romantic Reading List. I love timing my reading list to the season — beachy books in the summer, cozy holiday stories at the end of the year, and a good romance story is a favorite to read around Valentine’s Day! I just picked up Modern Love, a collection of essays from the New York Times “Modern Love” column, that I can’t wait to flip it open this week. A few of my other favorite romantic reads are One Day In December (I just pre-ordered Josie Silver’s next book, can’t wait to read it!), We Met In December (sensing a theme here with winter books), and Evie Drake Starts Over, which isn’t your typical romantic read and I adored it for that reason. If non-fiction is your style, one of my favorite books I read last year was Julia Child’s My Life in France — her adoration for her husband and true partnership in their marriage was one of the best parts of her story.