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Winter Craft & Science: Nature Art with Ice

Winter Craft & Science: Nature Art with Ice

Enjoy this easy Winter craft that combines science, nature & art -- perfect for kids of all ages!

I'll be the first to admit that once Winter sets in, looking for ways to incorpation nature into our day becomes more of a challenge. 

There's always that excitement for the first snow fall when we can head out and explore for animal tracks or make a snowman but everything is so bare and mostly colorless at this time of the year.

That is, unless you take nature into your own hands, add in a little science and create a colorful craft for your window (which is exactly what we did when the temperature dipped last week)!

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23 Jingle Bell Craft Ideas & STEM Activities for Kids

23 Jingle Bell Craft Ideas & STEM Activities for Kids

These jingle bell crafts ideas and learning activities are easy, fun and perfect to use year-round!

There's just something magical about the sound of a jingle bell.

Honestly, I think they are one of my favorite musical instruments -- not too loud, easy for everyone to use and perfect for most of those Christmas songs.

You may remember that we hunt for jingle bells every December, a unique family tradition that I've done with our kids. And we love to use them for crafting and activities too so today we're sharing a great list of ways to put those jingly guys to use!

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15 DIY Fall Garland Crafts for Kids

15 DIY Fall Garland Crafts for Kids

Fall has finally arrived in our neck of the woods! 

This past weekend, it was 90 degrees (ugh!) and then whoosh! Fall weather swept in with those cool nights and gorgeous days.  And when the weather changes, it always puts me in the mood to pull out the seasonal decorations :)

A few years back, I realized that many of our holiday decorations were either things the kids made at school or store-bought items.  As our kids started to get older, I knew I wanted to have some family-created items that would become cherished parts of our holiday traditions.

One of the perfect group crafting item is garland!  So I thought I would round-up some beautiful Autumn strands that you can make together (as a family or even in a classroom) and are perfect for Fall, Halloween or Thanksgiving.

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18 Awesome Ocean Activities for Kids

18 Awesome Ocean Activities for Kids

We are going under the sea today to explore ocean zones , marine animals and more with these amazing STEM ocean activities that are perfect for a little summer learning!

The underwater world is so intriguing to kids (and adults for that matter :)  There's so much we don't yet know about the ocean and it's contents which makes it the perfect subject to intrigue young minds.

If your kids are fans of whales, sharks and the big blue sea, try a few of these hands-on ocean science activities -- perfect for kids of all ages!

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Olympic Nature Art for Kids

Olympic Nature Art for Kids

This week's theme in our month-long Olympic Activities for Kids series is STEAM activities.

Now I know you're familiar with many of our STEM ideas for kids (science, technology, engineering & math) -- but we don't do a ton of 'A' = Art so I thought we would branch out a little this week.

If we can tie art to science or nature, we love that! 

Like the Sunprint T-shirt we made last summer or zentangle rock craft that's perfect for kids of any age.

Today's Nature Art activity is one that you can do almost anywhere -- building the Olympic Rings using items from nature!

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50+ Olympic Activities for Kids

The Summer Olympics are beginning soon & we're going to make them an AMAZING event for your family!

Besides cheering on your favorite country, we thought it would be fun to create a friendly Learn & Play Summer Olympic Challenge for the kids too.

We've teamed up with an outstanding group of kid-friendly bloggers from around the world to bring you a whole month of Olympic-related crafts, activities, sensory play and fun ways to learn!

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Colors of the Rainbow: 20 Craft Ideas for Kids

Nothing says "Spring" like the colors of the rainbow!

And while it's fun to pull out the crayons to make a rainbow, we often prefer something with a tactile or sensory component when we're crafting or creating art.  Like our Fall Texture Art projects for kids , today's activities all involve something more than just coloring on paper. 

So let's get creative with rainbow colors that 'pop'!

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14 Creative DIY Valentine Boxes

Fun ideas for DIY Valentine Boxes that are the perfect way to collect all those love notes!

Sometimes I think it's the minor holidays that might put me under as a Mom!

Take February for example, either I'm trying to find 100 items for the kids to bring for the 100th day of school or I'm wondering how it is that EVERY set of boxed valentines includes 24 cards when my kids ALWAYS have 26 kids in their class.

I solved that last challenge by finding a great selection of Free Valentine Cards that you can print yourself -- as many as you'll need :)

Now for the next challenge -- coming up with a great idea for the Valentine Box! 

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18 Paper Airplanes, Plane Crafts & Books about Flying

Planes have been a long-standing thing at our house -- paper airplanes, plane games & flying with kids.

My son was BIG into paper airplanes as a kid and both of our kids became proficient travelers by the time they were five.

But I think my fondest airplane memory will be one that happened when my daughter was young -- she had this special family game she would ask use to play -- Going on a Plane!

She would set up 2 chairs next to each other and pretend we were flying off to Disney World (we visited there a number of times as my parents live about an hour from the park) or some other far off place from a book we read. 

It's one of those adorable moments that I'll remember because she & her "flying companion" would have these elaborate conversations about places they would visit and things to do.  Sometimes she would take Nani or her older brother; other times, her favorite stuffed animal would go with her.

So today's book & activity collection is All Things Planes -- for kids who enjoy traveling, flying or wanna-be pilots!

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Christmas Stocking Ornament Craft for Kids

It's always fun to pull out some simple craft activities & family ideas during the holidays!

Nothing complicated -- just something the kids enjoy creating and that usually involves something sparkly :)

And kids adore making ornaments to hang on the tree

I think we have more handmade ornaments on our tree that we do any other type.  We love going through them each year as we decorate and reflecting on when they were made.

We'll frequently hear "I remember making this in Kindergarten!" which is amazing since they can't remember to put their shoes away on most days :)

I admit, those nostalgic memories are wonderful at this time of year.  I remember being in second grade and having the whole class make paper stockings to hang on the class-made "brick" mantle!  It was fun to come to class each day and see our names hanging near that paper fireplace.

So when we joined 70 other creative bloggers this month to bring you some beautiful Kid-made Christmas Ornaments, I knew exactly what I wanted to make with the kids!

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Healthy Gingerbread House Ideas

Let's talk Gingerbread Houses today!

Tis the season for family-friendly activities and building a gingerbread house is a time-honored tradition for so many families. 

Not to mention, it's a SUPER fun lesson in engineering principles for kids!  Testing out how to balance the walls, construct a roof and put together a fun little structure is the perfect intro to some of those basic physics principles.

And while I love all the building, learning & family connecting -- I'm not a fan of all the sugar icing and candy add-ons when the kids are already coming home telling me about those 'surprise' cookie and candy treats at school.

But there has to be a healthier option for these adorable little abodes, right?

YES!  We found some amazing edibel items to use as you construct a gingerbread house that's also a super healthy snack option too!

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Christmas Play Ideas using Items from Nature

Christmas is a wonderful time to invite nature into the house!

We love creating & crafting with natural items during the holidays -- they're not only free but plentiful.  Not to mention, some of them have such a wonderful scent!

And then there's the research that shows having a connection to nature helps to reduce stress during the holidays :) 

Oh yea, we all need that!

So enjoy these great play activities, books and crafts from nature that are perfect for the holiday season!

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14 Crafts for Your Thanksgiving Table

These beautiful & easy ideas are the perfect crafts for kids to make to decorate the Thanksgiving table!

When I think back to holiday celebrations, there are 3 things that I loved about Thanksgiving:

1. Having family come to visit

2. PIE! 

3. Helping to get the table ready for the meal

I always felt so grown up when my Mom would give us 'special jobs' so we could help with the holiday prep.  My sister and I were asked to put together the cookie tray, decorate the centerpiece and (if we were lucky) set out the china and fancy glasses.

Not only were we helping but we were also learning how to host a big dinner (a skill that's come in quite handy over the years ;)

And truth be told, these are still my favorite things about the holiday.

So this year, think about how the kids can help you to get the table ready while you focus on the food! 

 

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The BEST Halloween Decoration: Ideas for the Front Porch and Trunk or Treat Event

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias and its advertiser. All opinions & design ideas are mine alone. #TrickOrSweet #CollectiveBias

 

Every Halloween, we run into the same dilemma -- who will hand out the candy at our house?!

It all started the first Halloween BOTH the kids were old enough to trick or treat.  As we dressed to head out the door, my son asked "But if we all go, who will hand out the candy?"

We told him it would be fine if we were gone for a little while but it wasn't fine for him --

"What if my friends come while we're gone?  They won't think we do Halloween!"

Hmmm....it certainly is a dilemma.  We love heading out with the kids on Halloween night and visiting with the neighbors.  But I also like all the neighborhood kids to be excited when they stop by our house and not see a dark porch.

So we needed to create a good way to hand out the candy while we were off enjoying ourselves.

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Halloween Glitter Glow Sensory Craft

I want to introduce you to our newest craft project -- we call them Frank, Pete & Mike :)

What else would you call a monster, pumpkin and mummy, right?

We loved making the Halloween Salt-dough Glitter Garland last year so I thought we'd try our hand at another glittery Halloween craft.

But we uped the anty with these -- we wanted something that was not only fun to make but was also interactive and had a sensory component to it.

Not to mention their awesome ability to go from day to night so the kids can enjoy it 24/7 -- they can even be used as a fun nightlight during the Halloween season :)

 

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