Cute Snail Halloween Costume

September 15, 2021
Baby, Early Elementary, Halloween, Holidays, Older Elementary, Preschool, Toddler

diy snail costume for kids

When my kids were younger, I would always start the Halloween costume suggestions with animals. First, who doesn’t love a cute little kiddo dressed up as a furry friend, a cute crawler, or an exotic species? There is so much DIY potential in these costumes from colors to textures to materials…what more could a crafty parent want??

diy snail costume for kids toddlers

When Parents magazine asked me to drum up some animal costumes this year for their October 2021 issue, I was all paws on deck. Starting with the smallest of the group…this elegant, stylish snail.

One great thing about this costume is that it’s worn like a backpack and is VERY lightweight, so it won’t aggravate even the most sensitive of kiddos. You can wear any under-clothes that you want from a frilly dress to leggings and a tee.

Check out the rest of the animals over at!

Photos by Timothy Smith, Styling by Jill Rothstein


Your Complete Summer Reading List is Here!

July 1, 2021
ad, Everyday Crafts, Older Elementary, Summer, Tween to Teen

the week junior project kid summer of reading

This post was sponsored by The Week Junior

The biggest summertime challenge of parenthood is how to balance out the summer fun while avoiding any brain drain. As we come off the weirdest school year in history, our kids’ focus on devices for learning, socializing, and playing have rocked the worlds of us parents…particularly ones like myself who pride themselves on the classics of unplugged fun: crafting, cooking, and especially reading.  

As the summer progresses, our world is feeling like it’s getting a bit closer to normal, and let me tell you, a subscription to The Week Junior for your 8-to-14-year-old kids will most definitely help you with that. Issue 63 is a treasure…one to hold onto for its amazing feature: ‘Best Kids’ Books for Summer.’ It’s a thoroughly curated list of exciting new books, classic books, and books of all genres for kids ages 8-14. Click this link to find the book list and for a chance to win a free bundle of books!

Oliver and Sommer LOVE getting their weekly issue of The Week Junior in the mail…Sommer immediately flips to the fun stuff in the back and Oliver goes directly to the science section. (And, to be honest, I like to read the politics and world news because I love the simplified version!) Also, when there’s a topic that feels hard to explain on their level, it serves as a great reference point. And for the summer, the ‘Best Kids’ Books for Summer’ feature really helps narrow the massive world of books for tweens. 

I was so excited when The Week Junior asked me to come up with some summer-inspired crafts for their summer marketing campaign! Check ‘em out below and use the templates and how-to instructions to make your own! 

And, whatever you do, don’t forget to click here for your own subscription to The Week Junior!

paper popsicle craft project


What you’ll need: 

  • Colorful craft paper
  • Scissors
  • Tongue depressors
  • Glue or glue dots
  • Bugle beads (optional)


Make it:

  1. Print and cut out the template for the popsicle and trace onto colorful craft paper. 
  2. Decide which design you want to make and cut the layers. Use the template to trace onto various colors of craft paper and cut them out from the full popsicle shape.
  3. Glue each layer together. (Glue the bugle beads on as sprinkles: optional)
  4. Glue a popsicle stick to the back.


Bonus idea: Tape a string to the backs of each popsicle and make a summery garland!

diy felt pennants


What you’ll need:

  • Felt in various colors
  • Tacky glue
  • Scissors
  • ¼” dowels
  • Straight pins


Make it: 

  1. Print out word templates and pin them to a piece of felt.
  2. Cut out the letters.
  3. Place the letters on another piece of felt and cut the pennant shape around them.
  4. Glue the letters to the pennant.
  5. Cut a ¾” strip of a third color of felt and glue along the straight left edge. Trim the top and bottom to match the angle of the pennant.
  6. Cut four 2” strips and glue behind the straight, left edge.
  7. Glue the dowel behind the pennant and allow everything to dry completely.


origami ocean craft beach scene fish water


What you’ll need:

  • Brown grocery bag
  • Scissors
  • Colorful craft paper
  • Skewer
  • Blue paint
  • Large paper (16×20 inches)
  • Paint brush
  • Origami paper
  • Upcycled manilla envelope


Make it:


  1. Cut a 9×12” piece of your grocery bag.
  2. Follow these instructions to fold your boat. 
  3. Trim your skewer to 8” tall. Poke skewer up through the bottom of the boat, through the middle point.
  4. Print out the sail template and stack with craft paper. Cut out the templates and poke holes using the skewer on the top and bottom points of the sail.
  5. Slip the sails over the skewer in this order: bottom of large sail, bottom of small sail, top of small sail, top of large sail.



  1. Paint two pieces of paper blue. Let it dry.
  2. Rip one piece of paper into strips, making waves as you rip.
  3. Tape the strips over the solid blue paper.
  4. Cut a wavy edge along the top of a manilla envelope to use as the beach.


You can also make small fish by following this origami tutorial.

This post was sponsored by The Week Junior


Make Your Own Cardboard Typewriter

May 12, 2021
Decor, Everyday Crafts, Kids Rooms, Older Elementary, STEM, Tween to Teen, Upcycled

diy cardboard typewriter craft

I have a thing for outdated tech…a wall-mounted rotary phone with a cord? Give me them all. Film cameras with bellows? I can’t resist. Typewriters? Yes and yes. And some might say that crafting one out of cardboard is as useful as owning a vintage one—neither actually work so why not design your own?

diy typewriter craft cardboard

I made this super-fun DIY cardboard typewriter for (where you can find the full how-to instructions). In order to make one, you kind of have to be a recyclable hoarder—a shoebox, a paper towel roll, a cereal box, and some jar lids. Hop on over to for the list of craft and upcycled supplies!

diy typewriter craft cardboard

Who knows? This may be the start of the next great American novel!

diy typewriter craft cardboard


Nature-Inspired Clay Leaves

April 27, 2021
Decor, DIY Home, Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Fall, Gifts, Grown-Up, Nature, Older Elementary, Spring, Tween to Teen

clay leaf diy

Instead of preserving nature by pressing or drying leaves, you can instead use them to make an imprint in one of my favorite craft supplies: air dry clay.

Go on a nature walk with the kids and find leaves that have very pronounced veins—the more distinct the veins, the better the finished product. Roll out the air dry clay until it’s about 1/4″ thick, then use a rolling pin to press the leaves down into the clay. Peal away the leaves and use a toothpick to “cut out” the leaf. Gently rest the clay leaf inside a bowl, creating a bend, and let them dry completely (at least 24 hours). I made a very watery acrylic paint mixture to add a translucent coating to the leaves, but you can choose whatever paint finish you like. The one thing to keep in mind: if you are using water with your paint, you have to paint your strokes fast and few…when air-dry clay gets wet, guess what it does? It wants to return to malleable clay, so you have 2, maybe 3 strokes to get it fully covered.

Check out the full post that I did for for more details!


clay leaves


Turn Gloves into Monsters

April 12, 2021
Early Elementary, Everyday Crafts, Jewelry and Fashion, Older Elementary, Tween to Teen, Winter, Yarn & Fabric

glove monster craft stuffed animal diy

Now that winter is over and spring cleaning is upon us, you likely have some lone gloves who lost their mate in the last sledding excursion of 2021. You have three options here…first, you can hold onto that glove, hoping that one day the other will magically reappear. Second, you might be the “out of sight, out of mind” type and you just get rid of the sad lone glove. And third, if you are like me, you’ll keep it and turn it into a fun craft.

The how-to for this recent project can be found over on! And for other ideas of past glove monsters, check out this post from a few years back!glove monster craft for kids