I have 2 boys; one being 15 and the other 12. They are well past the age of wanting to hang out with mom and do some crafts. Now they’re into video games, sports, and school activities. I have a lot of fond memories of the fun times we had together that didn’t involve spending a lot of money.
Here are some easy and affordable crafts that you can make with your kids.
1. Colorful Clay Pots-All you need to make a decorative clay pot is glue, buttons, newspaper, paint, a paintbrush, spray paint (optional), a clay pot, and a saucer (if you’d like). All you do is wash the pot, dry, and leave overnight to ensure that it’s completely clean and there isn’t any moisture left on it. After the pot is prepared gather all your supplies and do the following: Lay down newspaper; place pot on top. Use a paintbrush to add color to the pot; dry. If you’re pressed for time you can use spray paint instead of regular paint. In the past I’ve used spray glitter after I painted the pot to give it a shinny look. After the paint dries, glue buttons (which will look like polka dots), beads, stickers or anything else that’s creative. Place on a saucer and your ready to add some potting soil and seeds. Another use for this could be a “small item holder.” For example you can use it to hold paper clips, buttons that popped off a shirt, spare change, and even small kitchen utensils.
2. Sock Puppets-This craft is probably the easiest and least expensive craft that you can make. It also doesn’t take very long to finish. All you need is a colorful sock, buttons, glue, and yarn (if desired). I start by putting the sock on my hand because I have more control of it. Glue round circles on the top of the sock; push on buttons. An alternative to the glue (which I recommend) is sewing the buttons on; much easier to complete. Now you can take some yarn and attach it to the top of the puppet; all finished.
3. Play Dough-When I was growing up we had standard play dough which came in different colors. I used to love playing with it but never knew how to make it. When my boys were little we were given several play dough recipes but one that I really liked (and so did they) was edible. You’ll need an 18 oz. jar of creamy peanut butter; (I use Jiff), ¾ cup of dry milk, and 6 tablespoons of honey. Mix everything together and then give the kids different things to make shapes with like cookie cutters, lids, buttons, etc. The unused play dough can be thrown away or sealed in an air-tight container to prevent drying.
4. Book Ends-Since we’re all trying to do our part to help the environment we can use many disposable objects. Things like toilet/paper towel rolls, water bottles, and as you’ll see from this craft; empty milk cartons. Take two 1-liter paper milk cartons and use a glue stick to attach construction paper to it. Once the paper is on you can use a stencil to draw pictures or let the child use their imagination and allow them to draw what they’d like. You can also go on-line and find templates that can be downloaded free of charge. Gather up some sand or other material that will act as a weight and add to the carton. Finally, place them on a shelf on opposite sides of some books.
Since we all need to spend some time with our families these crafts are a great way to do that. Not only will you have fun with your kids you’ll be creating life long memories.