January 11, 2018
Activities, Decor, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Family Bonding, Jewelry and Fashion, Older Elementary, Organization, Paper, Preschool, Toys, Tween to Teen, Upcycled
Winter is nowhere near over but chances are your kids are already going a bit stir crazy. Decluttering your desk may be the perfect way to both calm your mind and keep your little ones occupied. When it comes to sparking creativity, office supplies can be just as inspiring as craft supplies. Rubber bands, paperclips, and post-its are all full of potential – just ask your kids! And don’t be surprised if they start making requests for trips to Staples.
Open the flap of an envelope and you have a tiny house! Make a few for a cheery wall hanging or turn a ton into a paper doll village. Find the houses above in the first Project Kid book.
Cut up pieces of rubber bands to make all sorts of stripey stamps. Inspiration DIY recommends using blocks, wood shapes, or toilet paper tubes to make repeating designs.
Office dots can’t be beat when it comes to making patterns that pop! Martha Stewart suggests layering them on paper tags to create custom jewelry and keychains.
Another fun use for office dots is decorating origami stars. These folds look polished but they are simple enough for small hands. Follow the how-to from Hello Wonderful.
Pegboards = possibilities, especially when you add in colored pencils and rubber bands. Younger kids can practice shapes while older engineers can construct bridges or even bookshelves. Project via Apartment Therapy.
Without the fringe, piñatas go from overwhelming to piece-of-cake. Alex Evjen layers post-it notes on paper bags to create these tropical prize filled packages.
7. Paper clips + perler beads = bookmarks your kids will look forward to using. Follow the instructions from Perler to make a handful of your own.
Create a magical expanding book by using an accordion fold to join envelopes. Fill the pockets with paper mementos and let your kids doodle on the pages to create a book that grows with them. Image via Pinterest, instructions via Mini Meg .
From flat to fantastic, Kids Activities Blog gives manilla folders a makeover by turning them into a multi-level parking garage. Keep adding on for as long as your stairs, or folder supply, will allow.
To craft your own cars to go with your new garage, cut and stack erasers. Add push pin wheels and get ready to burn rubber! Via Gente Miuda.
Lastly, don’t underestimate the strength of the small but mighty binder clip. Stack a variety of boxes to create a freeform shelf that holds books, toys, or office supply art! Via Petit Monde
‘Tis the season for resolutions but instead of going it alone, why not make resolutions a team sport this year? Working towards resolutions as a family is not only a great bonding opportunity, it can be a teaching moment for your kids to learn about setting goals, navigating roadblocks, and celebrating successes together.
4 Tips for Setting Resolutions You Can Keep
Start with a Vision Board
Before you get to specific resolutions, allow yourself to daydream a little. Gather all those magazines you’ve been holding onto and cut out images that spark your imagination. Whether you choose pictures of things you want to make, adventures you’d like to take, or visions of your future self, seeing encouraging visuals will help manifest positivity. You can turn this into one collaborative board or let each family member make their own.
(source: Meri Cherry)
Keep Resolutions Simple
Make sure resolutions are easy for your child to understand, and therefore accomplish. When setting individual goals, younger kids can focus on smaller daily tasks while older kids can practice self care like identifying healthy activities they enjoy or finding positive ways to deal with stress. Nutritionist and Pediatrician Dr. Laura Jana says that, “Picking an unrealistic goal serves to make you feel bad about yourself, whereas a New Year’s resolution that is meant to be life-enhancing and long-lasting can be great for your family.”
Frame them Positively
Treat resolutions as an opportunity to treat yourself well, not trip yourself up. When you frame resolutions positively, rather than as a matter of self-sacrifice and denial, success is achievable. “Instead of a resolution like ‘No desserts this year,'” a family might choose something more attainable like ‘Eat healthier this year,’” says Paul Tough, author of “How Children Succeed.”
Include Kids in the Process
Kids will be much more invested in keeping resolutions that they’ve helped make. Go Gingham blogger Sara Tetreault explains that in order for a resolution to be successful “you have to market it to your kids and get their buy-in. Instead of saying, ‘OK, the parents have decided this,’ we say, ‘Let’s think about how we can improve ourselves and spend more time together as a family in the process.’”
Our Favorite Family Resolutions Continuing with the theme of positivity, we’ve listed ideas for resolutions you can work towards as team. Each category has a few potential activities to get you started but put your personal spin on them to fit your family best.
GOOD FOR YOU
- Keep a sketchbook
- Visit museums
- Improve a skill (via TinkerLab)
Start a Weekly Ritual
- Family Board Game Night
- Family Movie Night
- Family Art Night
Stay Active as a Family
- Visit parks
- Take family walks
- Try out new seasonal sports
Document Family Memories
- Print out photos
- Make scrapbooks with mementos
- Keep journals to record memories
GOOD FOR THE WORLD
Be Environmentally Responsible
- Visit the local shelter to play with and walk animals
- Cook a meal together for elderly neighbors
- Host a book drive for a local library (via Volunteer Your Family Hobby)
- Visit your local farmer’s market
- Join a community garden
- Learn new recipes to eat seasonally
- Make time to share how each family member has practiced kindness that day
- Write cards to far away relatives and friends to let them know you appreciate them
- Acknowledge the people in your daily life with “hellos”, “goodbyes”, and plenty of “thanks”
DIY Charts to Keep you on Track
“Taking the time out to acknowledge successes throughout the year is an important way to motivate your kids to carry on,” says Jennie Lyon, a sustainable living blogger. Keep your team on course with a chart that helps them see their progress. Whether you make a giant board for the the entire family or one for each member, make sure to take the time to celebrate when you reach your goals.
Take inspiration from chore charts to break down goals into digestible steps. Here are a few of our favorites!
- To literally stay “on track” create this clever race car board that’s sure to be a kid pleaser. (via Hot Wheels)
- Let your kids stage pictures that represent each of their goals then turn them into magnets. They’ll feel a sense of accomplishment by following their own lead. How to from Sisters Suitcase Blog.
- Patterned washi tape creates a cheery chart that can easily include the whole family. Give each family member their own row and write group goals across the top. Follow Grey House Harbor’s easy instructions.
- Goals with tickets give kids something tangible to work towards. Hello Splendid suggests allowing kids to turn in tickets for prizes or treats but they could also add up to a family outing if everyone pools theirs!
December 24, 2017
Activities, ad, Age, Animals, Christmas, Decor, DIY Home, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Family Bonding, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Unplugged Time
Thank you Moose Toys for sponsoring this post. Get crafty with your kiddo and make “ooniements” with Oonies by Moose Toys this holiday season!
I’m a mom and I’m a serious crafter, so I’m almost always fine with making a big crafting mess. But sometimes around the holidays when crafting, wrapping, and decorating is at its height, I feel like my kids are the cobbler’s kids with no shoes (or in this case, crafter’s kids with no crafts)— sometimes I just can’t deal with one more messy art project!
When we got this cool Oonies by Moose Toys, my kids were immediately excited (they had seen them on YouTube kids!), so they basically taught me what to do…a testament to how easy it is to use. We decided that we would invite some friends over to make “ooniements” for a little Christmas tree.
Oonies are like tiny, sticky balloons…they stick to each other and each set comes with eyes, tails, fins, arms, noses, etc to turn them into cute little creatures. There are tons of ideas in the booklet that comes with the toy, but naturally, these kids wanted to invent their own. Oonies also stick to each other, so you can make a cute inchworm or even a long strand of colored beads that can look like a garland.
At first I was all prepared with my red and white baker’s twine to make little ornament hangers, but you don’t really have to; Oonies just stick pretty much wherever you put them. They nestled nicely in our little flocked mini tree that the kids chose to display on a tower of wooden blocks.
They don’t last forever which is a blessing and a curse in some ways…a blessing because what parent doesn’t have a ton of art projects laying around? And a curse because, well, the kids expected to wake up to see their creatures still hanging out in the tree the next day. But we just took the appendages off and made new ones so the fun can happen all over again.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
Cardboard gift boxes are as much fun to build with as classic wooden blocks…stack a small one on the back of a bigger one, glue some buttons on the bottom edge, and voila! You have a car!
Let your kids pick out the wheel color and soup up the body with different colored washi tape. Add a paper tree to the top, and it becomes that magic moment of hauling the best part of Christmas home to the family!
What you need:
- 1 ½” x 2 ½” white jewelry box
- 1 ½” x 1 ¼” white ring box
- 4 medium green buttons
- 2 small yellow buttons
- 2 extra small red buttons
- ½” wide light blue washi tape
- ⅜” wide patterned tape
- 2/8” wide dark blue tape
- 1 sheet of two tone green paper
- 1 silver star sequin
- Approximately 18” string
- Hot Glue
- Glue together top and bottom of larger jewelry box and turn upside down. Glue top of ring box to the back end of larger box to create car body.
- Wrap bottom “bumper” of car in patterned tape, wrap skinny tape around top edge of the box and add rectangles of light blue tape to ring box for windows
- Glue four green buttons on sides of box for wheels, red buttons in back for tail lights and yellow buttons in front for headlights.
- Cut two 4” circles out of green paper. Fold the bottom section of one circle into a triangle then fold back and forth in the opposite direction to create a folded tree shape. Repeat with two other trees. Glue three trees together along their edges to create a pyramid shape. Glue piece of twig inside pyramid for a trunk.
- Glue tree to the top of car and add star to the point.
- Wrap string around car, knotting above tree and knotting again at the ends to create a hanging loop.
When I think of what I love about Christmas tree decorations, it’s two things…the lights and the ornaments. So making a lit ornament is a win-win for this crafter.
We played around with lots of ways to get make these little boxes glow, and with a string light bulb poked through the back, these snowflake shapes came to life.
Now I just want to decorate a whole tree in these! Who’s with me?
What you need:
- Square jewelry box (3 ½” x 3 ½” )
- Exacto knife
- Paint and Paint brush
- A square of white paper
- Two colors of washi tape
- Nail file
- Hot-glue gun
- Draw a 2 ½ “ square in the center of the box lid to leaving a ½” margin on all sides.
- Use the exacto knife to cut out the square, and sand down thee edges with a nail file.
- Paint the top and sides of the box and let dry.
- Trace top of box onto white paper and layer washi tape inside the square to create a criss crossing snowflake design.
- Cut out square and secure in the center of lid opening with washi tape.
- Poke a hole in the back center of the back using a pencil or scissors.
- Cut and knot a loop of string, glue it into top corner of the box lid and close the box to secure.
- Hang on tree, inserting light into the back of box.