Having had six wives in his lifetime, it shouldn't surprise anyone England's King Henry VIII was the first to declare Valentine's Day an official holiday in 1537.

No one really knows the origin of Valentine's Day, but the holiday has been celebrated in the month of February for centuries with many different customs.

But we still believe Valentine's Day is about showing affection between people. We exchange cards with romantic sentiments and send red roses and give loved ones chocolate candy in big red heart-shaped boxes.

You can make Valentine love bugs to give your sweetheart out of paper cups and plastic foam balls. I found directions for this craft at the United Kingdom's Activity Village on the Web at http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/cup_and_ball_lovebug.htm.

Use whatever size plastic cup you have available and scale the foam ball, wiggle eyes, stems and hearts to the size of the cup.


Paper or plastic disposable cup (any size)

Plastic foam ball

Acrylic paint in red and black and a sponge brush

Self-adhesive foam hearts available at a craft store

Black chenille stem

Wiggle eyes

Fast-drying tacky glue


Use the sponge brush to paint the cup red and the ball black and set aside to dry. I put the ball on a wooden skewer to hold while painting, then stood it up inside a drinking glass to dry.

Glue the ball to the bottom of the cup and let dry.

Cut the chenille stem in half. Fold one half in half, then stick it into the top of the head. Bend the stem on the head to look like antennae. Peel the backing off two red foam hearts and stick one heart on the end of each of the antennae.

Glue a red heart to the center of the ball for a nose. Glue eyes above the nose.

Decorate the cup with several more hearts.