I think I mentioned that Brent joined the Air Force and was at Officer Training for a month before we moved to TN. Yeah, I'm pretty sure I did: here, here and here. With that at the front of my thoughts and experiences, I jumped at the news that Sweethearts (my absolute FAVORITE conversation hearts) was releasing a new line called Red, White and You to honor the military and celebrate America's patriotism.
The hearts are red, white and blue with patriotic sayings such as "Miss You," "Proud of You," and "Home Safe." The blue ones are blueberry flavored, which I really enjoyed. We had lots of fun trying to decide what to do with our candy hearts. We shared some of them with friends at the 4th of July cookout. A few of the other medical school students here at LMU-DCOM are also in the Air Force and enjoyed the hearts.
In the end, Sammi and I decided to make and decorate a cake. We made two cakes, an "X" and an "O" to show hugs and kisses for Daddy. Placing the small candy hearts on the cake was good practice for her growing fine motor skills. She was able to place all of the hearts "correctly" the first time, meaning she was pleased with where they went and how it looked. It's fun to see her developing into such a capable child. I hardly had to oversee her in this project. When I get too involved, she's quick to remind me, "I can do it myself, Mommy!" Or if I'm really intruding, "I can do it myself, Amber!"
She was also very careful to place the hearts so the words were showing every single time. I didn't even ask her to make that distinction. She's definitely showing literacy awareness.
The United Service Organizations (USO) offers a great little packet of craft ideas using the Red, White and You candies. You can download the packet here. Also, through the rest of this month you can donate to the USO to sponsor a care package sent to a deployed service man or woman which will include the Red, White and You candies.