Father’s Day Gifts from the Heart
He kisses their boo-boos, changes their diapers, and drives them to soccer games, even after a long day at work. This year on Father’s Day, show Dad how much he’s appreciated by keeping the gifts personal and getting the children involved.
Get Crafty. My kids and I always do some type of craft for Father’s Day. One year, we purchased a World’s Best Dad shirt at Michael’s, which the girls painted by placing their hands in paint and covering the shirt with their palm prints. While it’s not something he wears out to dinner (or necessarily in public, because it’s about two sizes too large) he sleeps in it, and the girls always tell him how they made it for him. You can do the same by purchasing a plain white T-shirt and fabric paint at a craft store. Or, you might have your children create gifts related to something Daddy likes to do. Does he fish? Buy a tackle box, which you can fill with great tools, and have them decorate the outside. Does he love coffee? Purchase a portable coffee mug, at a store like Michael’s, with a removable inside that the kids can color. If your littlest baby isn’t able to participate in the arts and crafts activities, complete a plaster project with your infant’s hands and feet prints and create a wall hanging for your partner’s office. You can do this with washable paint too, and print the hands and feet prints on a sheet of paper, which you can then frame. (This is also a great gift for a Daddy’s first Father’s Day.)
Cook it Up! If your kids are two years old and older they can probably help – at least minimally – in the kitchen. I’ve been baking with my girls since they were really young, and each special holiday we create something delicious. They love to crack eggs, whip, and stir; they gather ingredients, and, of course, they love to taste the finished product. For Father’s Day, nothing beats breakfast in bed, so instruct Dad to sleep in; when he wakes, whip him up this yummy recipe sent to me from Food Network’s “5 Ingredient Fix” chef Claire Robinson.
French Toast with Strawberries and Cream
3 cups fresh strawberries, hulled, sliced and divide
2 Tbsp. water
Pinch of table salt
6 large eggs
1/4 cup Coffee-mate Natural Bliss Sweat Cream, divided
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
(8) 1-inch-thick slices brioche (from day old loaf)
1 cup heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees and place an ovenproof serving platter in oven.
In a medium saucepan, over moderate heat, add 2 cups of berries and water. Bring to a simmer and cook until the berries are softened, about two to three minutes. Set aside.
In a large, shallow bowl whisk together eggs, 1 cup Natural Bliss Sweet Cream, and a pinch of table salt.
Place a large non-stick griddle or non-stick skillet over medium heat and melt half the butter. Working in batches, dip half the bread quickly in egg mixture until lightly soaked, turning over to coat both sides of bread.
Transfer bread to skillet and cook until golden brown and slightly crisp, about three minutes per side.
Place French Toast on platter in oven and cover loosely with foil. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
Whip 1 cup cream to soft peaks and slowly whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup Natural Bliss Sweet Cream.
Serve French Toast with warm strawberries, reserved fresh strawberries, and top off with freshly whipped cream.
Make it Personal. The presents I love most are the ones my kids make with their own hands. Frame a piece of artwork hand-crafted by your child. For instance, have your child draw Daddy a picture of something (s)he loves to do the most with him, and then frame the picture. Or take it a step further and use a site like zazzle.com to turn one of your child’s drawings into a canvas picture. If your baby is still too little to draw, take a photograph of Daddy and his little one and frame it. Create a collage, or for Daddy’s first Father’s Day, a scrapbook of things Daddy and Baby did throughout their first year together: first bath, first steps, and trips to the park. If your child is older, have him or her write a story about the best day ever spent with Daddy and then create a book with the story, which your child can illustrate above the text. Older kids might get creative and write a song, or play, which you can tape and present to Daddy and watch as a family.
Throw Dad a Special Day. We love to throw parties in our home, and any holiday is a cause for a celebration. Make Father’s Day a special day by deeming it Dad’s Day. If your kids make a shirt as a gift, present it to Dad first thing and ask him to wear it. Or have your children make a paper crown out of construction paper. Decorate the house with streamers, balloons, and flowers. Take Dad to do something fun, which he enjoys, for the day, such as playing in the waves at the beach, tossing a football at the park, or bike riding. Work with your kids to create a special dinner menu, which older kids can even write out and hand to him as though he’s eating in a fancy restaurant. Top it off with a yummy dessert, such as a Father’s Day cake, which your children can help you bake and decorate; then sing Happy Father’s Day to him in the tune of Happy Birthday. You might even let him blow out a candle or two!