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Archive for the 'Crafts' Category

MOTHER’s Day Countdown: Ladybugs

Ladybug Paperweight (Courtesy We’re not sure what makes ladybugs so lovable, but we can’t resist them. And we’ve seen two particularly adorable takes on ladybug crafts, either of which would make a great kiddie DIY gift for Mother’s Day.

First up, this ladybug paperweight from’s list of Mother’s Day Crafts Kids Can Make.

You’ll need 2 small rocks; strong glue or a hot glue gun (if adults will be supervising this activity); red, black and white acrylic paint; glitter glue; a black pipe cleaner; and a small round of red or black felt, about the size of the larger rock. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, May 4th, 2009
Under: Crafts | No Comments »

MOTHER’S Day Countdown: The Clever Coupon Book

Ribbons (Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune/MCT) Mother’s Day is just a week and a half away, so we’re starting our countdown of wonderful ways to celebrate Mom. Remember the little coupon books we used to do when we were kids? Each coupon was good for a lawn mowing, car washing or similar task – and our parents ended up with badly sheared front yards and streaky windshields. Well, it’s time to craft some 21st century coupon books with things us moms would really, really like to have. You know, like an extra hour of sleep on a Saturday morning. Or someone who’ll load our iPods with new music, teach us to play something other than drums on Rock Band, or give our Power Point presentations a little added pizzazz. So may we suggest a new wave coupon book, filled with projects that play to our kids’ techie strengths?

Younger kids can use Disney’s downloadable, printable coupon books, with coupons for “breakfast in bed” and “no whining,” as well as blank pages to add their own scrawled ideas. But older darlings will want to make their own out of heavy paper, ribbon and the computer skills they already use to embellish their Facebook pages and multimedia oral reports at school. Tell them to try these ideas on for size, then add their own: Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, April 29th, 2009
Under: Crafts | 7 Comments »

EASTER’s a’Coming…

Chickies & Eggs (Courtesy Family Fun Magazine) We’re counting down the days till Easter. Join us for this week’s round-up of spring and Easter-themed crafts, recipes and activities. We’re starting with this adorable tree of nesting chickies – fantastic centerpiece, don’t you think? – courtesy of those clever folks at Family Fun magazine. Here’s how to do it!

Egg carton
Hole punch
1/4-inch-wide ribbon
Colored tissue paper
Colored card stock
Pinking shears or decorative-edge craft scissors
Blown eggs
Glue stick, markers
Colored feathers
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Posted on Monday, April 6th, 2009
Under: Crafts, Easter | 2 Comments »

LEPRECHAUNS, Barm Brack & More

Leprechaun Catcher (Courtesy Family Fun Magazine) Got a little leprechaun at home? Or just trying to catch one? Our buddies over at Family Fun Magazine were kind enough to share their St. Patty expertise with us and the best way, they say, to catch a leprechaun is with this hat trap: “Leprechauns have big egos, so a giant version of their own hat is irresistible to them. Once they step on the false top, you’ll have caught a 10-gallon prize.”

We’ll tell you how to make one, them give you suggestions for other adorable St. Patrick’s Day crafts, a minty punch and some real Irish food, including Barm Brack…

You’ll need:
An empty oatmeal container
Green, black and yellow felt
Double-sticky tape
A small piece of gold foil (or other lightweight bait)

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Posted on Friday, March 13th, 2009
Under: Crafts | No Comments »

OOBLECK & Goo, How To

Dr. Seuss on the Hollywood Walk of Fame One of Dr. Seuss’ most famous books — and one beloved by science teachers everywhere — is “Bartholomew and the Oobleck.” Published in 1949, it’s the tale of Bartholomew Cubbins, page to spoiled, stubborn King Derwin of Didd, who has decided that sun, fog, rain and snow are borrrring and he’d like something else to fall from the sky. Voila. Generations of children were introduced to Oobleck, a green goo with remarkable properties – but not exactly what you want coating your garden, your castle or your friends.

Oobleck is a bizarre substance – liquid and solid at the same time. If you want to go all scientisty here, it’s actually a non-Newtonian liquid and despite the Seussian connection, according to the Lawrence Hall of Science staff, Albert Einstein was already writing about the stuff back in 1906. But even 21st century kids adore the goo because it’s just so darn weird – and you can make it at home with ordinary household ingredients. Here’s how…
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Posted on Wednesday, February 18th, 2009
Under: Books, Crafts | No Comments »


Valentine Bingo Prepping for that classroom Valentine party? Bingo’s always popular with kids, particularly when you use something edible for the markers – red and white M&Ms, gummi bears, conversation hearts or yogurt covered raisins.

Here’s how to make your bingo boards:
1. Open a word document on your computer and type in “Valentine Bingo” in some particularly Valentine-y font (we used Snell Roundhand and wondered where the heck they come up with these font names). Now click the tab for making tables and insert a 4×4 table right under the heading. Grab a corner with your cursor and pull it down to make appropriate sized squares. Print the results on white card stock, enough for every child in the class or, if you’re using party stations and letting small groups rotate through, 4-6 boards plus 1 extra.
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Posted on Thursday, February 5th, 2009
Under: Crafts, Valentine | 2 Comments »

HOLIDAY Countdown: Star of David Decor

Star of David Napkin Rings (Courtesy Family Fun)Family Fun, both the magazine and the web site, is one of our favorite spots for kid-friendly craft ideas and we couldn’t resist their Star of David napkin rings, particularly after a reader suggested that you don’t even have to make your own playdough to make them. Use Fimo dough or purchased Play-Doh, she says, if the cooking-playdough-over-the-stove thing is too much bother. Whatever you end up with, roll the dough out, and cut out two equilateral triangles per napkin ring. Poke two holes for the cord – it’s best to overlap the two triangles to poke them, then take them apart to bake. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees and bake the pieces for 15 minutes. Flip them and bake them another quarter hour. When cool, paint the stars a beautiful, royal blue.

Want more? Click here for more kid-friendly Hanukkah games, decorations and craft ideas. Got a great idea? Click “comments” and share!

Posted on Thursday, December 18th, 2008
Under: Crafts | No Comments »

HOLIDAY Countdown: Eleventh Hour Classroom Party Ideas

DIY Chef's Hat (Courtesy Family Fun Magazine)Being a classroom mom (or dad) is tough when the winter holiday party rolls around. Christmas parties are taboo in public schools, and there’s only so much you can do with Frosty the Snowman. So may we recommend a classroom cookie workshop instead? You’ll have a toque making station, where kids can make their own chef’s hats (check out that photo!) and decorate aprons. Then, a couple of cookie decorating stations, laden with gooey frosting and decorating supplies – ask parents to bake (or buy) plain, undecorated sugar cookies and contribute decorating supplies. And finally, a spot where kids can wrap up their creations to take home. Let’s start with those awesome hats, shall we?
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Posted on Tuesday, December 16th, 2008
Under: Crafts, Cuisine | No Comments »

HOLIDAY Countdown: DIY Menorahs

Menorah  (D. Ross Cameron/Oakland Tribune)
Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, starts at sundown on Dec. 21, but our colleague Jessica Yadegaran, who writes the Corkheads wine blog, has been on a mission to find new DIY ideas for menorahs. So she went to the queens of DIY and recycled crafts, the editors of Berkeley’s Ready Made magazine – that’s Editor-In-Chief Shoshana Berger above, placing the final candle on a homemade menorah made from a fallen tree branch. Read on for instructions for making your own kid-friendly menorah out of baby food jars (!). There’s more at that link, including menorahs out of wine bottles and the branch pictured above, but first we’re dying to know: have you made your own menorah before? What did you use?
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Posted on Sunday, December 14th, 2008
Under: Crafts | 1 Comment »

HOLIDAY Countdown #2: Fleece Navidad

Fleece Hat & Scarf (Cindi Christie/CC Times)Holiday gift-making doesn’t get much easier than these snuggly, fleecy accessories. It will take you more time to drive to the fabric store and pick out adorable fabric, than to whip up these softly fringed scarves or tasseled toppers. Read on for instructions for the scarf and hat, then follow this link for more ideas.

Fleece scarf
For each scarf, cut a piece of fleece from selvage to selvage, and 10-12 inches wide. Trim off the salvages and cut a fringe of 1/2″ wide by 3 or 4″ long strips into the ends. Yes, it’s just that easy. (Cost $1-$3 each. Time: 20 minutes.)
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Posted on Saturday, December 13th, 2008
Under: Babies & Tots, Christmas, Crafts | No Comments »