While the adults mingle before dinner, kids will stay entertained with our fun Valentine's Day games and crafts projects.
Games: Hidden valentines around the house with each kid's name on them make an fun hide-and-seek game, or make a puzzle game from an enlarged copy of a family photo cut into pieces. To make the puzzle a bit harder, use a photo of great-grandparents and other relatives, and have the kids guess who's who after the puzzle is complete.
Crafts: For a fun Valentine's Day exchange, have each kid at the party make one Valentine to give to another -- just set out pink, red, and white scrapbook paper, scissors, and stickers, and they'll take care of the rest. For another project, let the kids decorate glass votive holders with acrylic paints. Choose light colors, such as pink, white, and yellow, so light can flicker through the homemade creations.
Young party guests are easy to please with sweet gifts, so they'll love a personalized chocolate bar wrapper with their name or photo on it. Decorate-your-own sugar cookies to take home (or eat!) at the end of the evening also make great gifts for kids. For something less sugary but still sweet, lay clever "coupons" at each child's plate -- one can allow staying up an extra hour after bedtime, another can be for certain TV privileges, or one can be redeemable for an outing with friends.