Frankie’s Valentine’s Day Extravaganza: Red Velvet Cupcakes

For the third day of Frankie’s Valentine’s Day Extravaganza, JumpStart’s resident gardener Eleanor decided to show us how to bake some delicious Valentine’s snacks. She was feeling really generous this February and decided to actually give out this special recipe to one of her famous desserts! Find out what goodies Eleanor has shared with us today, along with some kind words to you Jumpeez!


Hi Jumpeez! One of my favorite activities around this time of year is baking my famous red velvet cupcakes. I just love the bright red color they make once they come out of the oven. Since Valentine’s Day is a time for sharing, I thought it would be a great idea to give my yummy recipe out to all my friends. Make sure to get a parent to help out with this activity, since it could get messy! Check out the recipe below with instructions!–Eleanor

1 box of chocolate cake mix
1cup buttermilk or water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 bottle (1 oz) red food color
2 tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
A pinch of salt

1. Preheat oven to 350 degress so that it will be nice and toasty by the time you create your batter. Make sure to grease your cupcake pan at this point and fill each spot with special Valentine’s-themed cupcake wrappers.

2. In one bowl, mix together the vegetable oil, buttermilk, vanilla and eggs until fully combined.

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3. In your second bowl, mix together all of your dry ingredients.

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4. Combine the dry mixture into the large bowl, stir until your batter is a consistent red. Once your batter has been mixed thoroughly, add a cup of chocolate chips to really add some kick to your cupcakes!

5. Pour batter into cupcake container and bake for however long your cake mixture recommends.

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6. Add frosting and sprinkles to your new creations!

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Once your yummy cupcakes have cooled off, hand them out to all your friends!

February Activities: Throwing a Valentine’s Day Bash!

As far as children’s holidays are concerned, Valentine’s Day can often be overlooked albeit the festivity that surrounds this February day. However, it is important to remember the true meaning of the day isn’t just about eating tons of chocolate, it’s about teaching your children about friendship and showing their gratitude towards others. This holiday is a great opportunity to celebrate those you love most at home by throwing a Valentine’s Day party for your children and their friends. Here are some great tips for throwing a Valentine’s Day hangout that can be both fun and educational.

Photo by hello-julie, ©2007 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

Photo by hello-julie, ©2007 Some rights reserved. Licensed by Creative Commons Public Works License

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Love Is in the Air at JumpStart

As the weather gets warmer and Valentine’s Day approaches, JumpStart says goodbye to snow and hello to hearts! Now that winter has passed, we are ready to celebrate February with a brand-new theme! Do you know what that means? New FunZones have popped up in MainStreet, DownTown, and the BoardWalk!

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JumpStart’s Worksheet of the Week

Click here to download 'Hunt for Hearts'

Family Fun Traditions for Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is all about spending time with the ones that you love most, so why not make this year’s celebration extra special by focusing your attention on your family as a whole. Start a few fun and festive family traditions this year to teach your kids about celebrating the people in their lives that they love and care for, during this special time of year.

Photo by: Andy Melton

Fun n’ Festive Breakfast – Send the little ones off to school with something to talk about by making them a sweet seasonal surprise for breakfast. Use cookie cutters or other hand kitchen tools to make heart shaped pancakes, eggs, cinnamon rolls and the like. This is a great way to sprinkle some extra Valentine’s Day cheer, first thing in the morning. Not to mention, it helps set the tone for any other holiday festivities and activities that might be planned for throughout the day.

Cards and Crafting – Holiday crafts are a great way to get your kids excited for a certain time of year. Not to mention, they are great learning tools when trying to explain or give context to days like Valentine’s Day, which focus on abstract ideas like love! Take some time of your busy schedule to work with your kinds on handmade card and crafts that they can share with family and friends. By encouraging their creativity, they might even surprise you with a very special Valentine’s Day gift of your own!

Family Dinner – Get the kids involved in the kitchen by preparing a special family dinner to mark the occasion of Valentine’s Day! You can turn the cooking process into a learning activity by having kids help out with measurements and conversions from recipes. There are so many great opportunities for learning when it comes to cooking. Homemade special like meals hold extra value on days like Valentine’s Day!

Click here for more fun family activities!

Even more to LOVE in JumpStart!

Frankie and friends are kicking off a new season in JumpStart! Have you seen all the new decorations? From hearts and gift bags to teddy bears and other heart shaped treats, are you able to piece together the clues for what we’re celebrating? We’re counting down to Valentine’s Day, so start exploring! Not sure where to start? Besides the regular updates to Petz and Threadz, you can preview all of your fun and festive options, here:

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Over in both the Central Park and DownTown FunZone areas, Jumpeez can find the popular Heart Lane water ride, which invites you down a heart shaped tunnel while sailing aboard a swan. You’ll pass by beautiful scenes of flowers, candy hearts, waterfalls, and all kinds of other Valentine’s Day themed fun.

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Then search high and low through Poseidon’s HangOut, MainStreet, the Beach and DownTown because there are a few sweet treats waiting to be picked up in this season’s new scavenger hunt. Collect all the hidden candy hearts for a special prize of your very own!

Click here to see what else is here!