Looking for something to do with your kids during this holiday vacation? Hereâ€™s the Kidoinfo Top 12 List of things to do â€“ many are Free and Cheap. Check the Kidoinfo calendar and blog for even more ideas.
Today I introduce Elyse Majorâ€”writer/tinkerer. She is the author of Tinkered Treasures, a craft book of over thirty five projects which illustrates how everyday items such as tin cans and clothespins can be easily transformed into charming dÃ©cor and gifts. In addition to Kidoinfo, she contributes to magazines such as Romantic Country and Romantic Homes as a writer and sometime-stylist/photographer; she publishes a blog, and works as a communications consultant for Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island.
Kidoinfo: How did you start your business?
We set up this year’s Gingerbread Villageâ€”now an annual traditionâ€”on the buffet in the dining room. Not sure why we never placed it here beforeâ€”seems well-suited nestled in this cave-like space where one must bend down to peak at the scene from standing position but is easily seen at eye level when one is seated at the table.
The village has a home on the left, a short stroll to the urban village. The town center is the large center building with a tiny building on the right, serving as the beloved library. The movie theater, located on the far right, adorned with bright lights, is currently showing a 3-D film.Gingerbread-Santa-Sleigh-GV
I love paper products and so my head is easily turned when even tissue boxes with festive holiday images appear on the shelves at Target. This yearâ€™s patterns are especially adorable and feature simple and cheerful motifs. So cute in fact, that I find myself unable to place them in the recycling bin. And thatâ€™s how this little project started.
Also makes a fun non-breakable ornament
Find bakerâ€™s twine at post-holiday clearance sales at stores like Crate & Barrel
Use this idea year-round for gift tags
We like to celebrate fall by making crafts that remind us of the seasonâ€™s colors, shapes and textures or using natural materials found on our outdoor hikes. Many of these projects are simple and need little advanced planning. Although I show samples of finished crafts, these activities are as much or more about the process, the outdoor adventure and collecting the materials. Plan a walk and bring a bag to hold natural items along the way. Making art with kids can lead to unexpected discoveries and detours. If you want perfection, craft your own piece alongside or after the kids are asleep.
This is a great rainy day project, if you have already collected some toilet paper and paper towel rolls and various small cardboard boxes.
Most of the cardboard is thin enough for a child to cut. I dismantled all the boxes and turned them inside out to hide the labels, but I think a colorful castle would be nice, too. See the little round tower on the corner? That is called a bartizan. We cut slits in a toilet paper roll to stick it onto the wall. The skinny white tower to the left is a garderobe….a latrine. It hangs over the outside wall and empties into the moat, or in this case, into the lake. The tall towers have merlons, (square blocks which defenders could hide behind,) and crenels, the spaces in between, for shooting at the enemy.
Fall’s leaves are a perfect reason to work together as a family and have some fun doing it as well.
As we continue to recover from Hurricane Sandy, here’s hoping there are moments in your family’s life to be able to enjoy the bounty of colorful leaves on the ground. It’s the perfect weekend to use yard-clean up as a family activity as well as a craft project! Also, let’s get ready for turning those clocks back on Sunday.
Buy a pack of googly eyes and buy a pack of fun. Just the words “googly eyes” easily invokes a chuckle (to silly me). These little plastic shells that contain a loose disk or black ball can quickly transform any inanimate object into a toy. Inexpensive and available at craft stores or even some craft […]