I grew up in a very “crafty” household. My mom has an art degree and always encouraged our creative sides in many ways. She never met a “mistake” that she couldn’t turn into something unexpectedly beautiful. My sisters and I always had the best projects and book reports in the class with her help. We grew up thinking she was magic because we always went to bed with our projects well done, but woke up with them looking extraordinary. In truth, it was my mom staying up until 2am adding the extra touches and details that made it come alive. I knew that was something I wanted to gift to my own kids later in life.
Now that I am the mom of two littles, I can confirm that indeed my mom is magic. How on earth did she find the time and energy?!
Here are some of my favorite crafty things to do with kiddos of all ages:
Every season Michaels craft store will have little pre-packaged 3D projects for the upcoming holiday. If you wait until the week before the holiday, they will put them on sale, up to 70% off! If you don’t want to chance that your favorite pick will be gone, you can Google “Michael’s coupons” and there is always a great deal you can print off or show on your phone at the counter.
Go on a walk or to the park and pick out small smooth river rocks. Take them home, wash and dry them, and then turn them into masterpieces of your imagination. The best paints to use are acrylics. Seal them by using clear spray paint. Add extra fun by going out into the community and hiding them for others to find. There are hundreds of these fun-uplifting rocks out there right now waiting to be found. You can also make a weekend out of hunting for them in local parks!
Check out these amazing East Valley communities on facebook for inspiration:
Making Play Dough:
Homemade play dough is super easy and fun to do with the kids. I add essential oils to the dough for an extra element of therapeutic benefits.
1. Combine all of the dry ingredients in a medium saucepan
2. Add all of your wet ingredients in
3. Put the pan over medium to low heat and continuously stir with a large spoon until it clumps around your spoon in the right “playdough” consistency (sorry really no other way to describe that…)
3.5. If you plan on making the entire batch one color, then go ahead and add your dye to the saucepan while you are stirring. It makes for a much easier time mixing it in. If you want to make several different colors, then wait and mix in after you have separated out your dough.
4. Lay the dough on wax or parchment paper and knead out any clumps that may be in there.
5. Add the essential oils of your choice, about 10 drops to preference. Lavender for calming, Thieves to kill off those tiny people germs, Peppermint for energy etc.
**It’s better to add in the essential oils after the dough has cooled, as heat burns off the therapeutic benefits of essential oils.
Creating with clay:
This was my absolute favorite thing as a kid. I would spend hours sculpting tiny creations. It’s so rewarding as a kid to be able to see something come alive from your imagination. I would recommend using fimo clay for this because you can bake it in the oven and it will harden to save and play with forever.
When in doubt, construction paper! You can do almost anything you want with construction paper. Grab a pack of multicolored paper, scissors, and a glue stick, and craft to your hearts content. We no longer purchase cards for celebrations. We make them with construction paper and love. No joke, I used to make entire 3D mini worlds out of paper as a kid.
I hope this post gives you inspiration to craft with your kids. You don’t need to be artistic to have fun being creative. Share with us all of your crafty kids’ creations!