When making this craft with little kids, adults should create the Christmas tree template, let it dry, then have the kids decorate the ornament.
Select a large Popsicle stick, and lay it vertically—this will be the trunk of the tree and hold the other sticks.
Create the bottom branch of the tree. Glue another large Popsicle stick perpendicularly to the trunk. Leave room at the bottom so the trunk still shows.
To add more branches, glue three medium-sized sticks above the large bottom stick. Then glue small Popsicle sticks above the medium sticks, leaving a gap between the top branch and the one below it (for string, which is attached in step 7). If you want to add a star on top, leave room for that too.
Paint the tree green or other fun holiday colors, then set it aside to dry.
Decorate the tree with craft rhinestones or buttons. Let dry.
Make it into an ornament by tying string around the top of the trunk between the top branch and the one below it.
Kids will love digging into this classic craft. Give as gifts by rolling the dough into balls or thick twists and placing them in lidded jars tied with ribbon.
5 1/2 cups flour
4 cups water
2 cups salt
8 tablespoons cream of tartar
10 tablespoons vegetable oil
Optional: glitter and peppermint essential oil
Combine the water, salt, cream of tartar and food coloring in a saucepan.
Cook on medium-low heat, stirring continuously until the mixture is hot. Add the oil, and stir until thoroughly combined. One cup at time, stir in the flour, making sure to smooth out clumps.
Mix until the dough pulls away from the sides of the pan and isn't sticky. Take a pinch of dough, and test with your fingers for the correct consistency. You might need slightly more or less than 5 cups of flour depending on the brand you use.
Empty the dough onto a cutting board or counter, and let cool before adding additions such as glitter or essential oil. Add 8 drops of peppermint oil per batch.
Store the dough in an airtight container—mason jars are attractive and functional.
To make a twist: Roll out two different colors of dough, about the same size. Place them next to one another, and twist them together.
Mini cookie box notepads
Let kids turn their favorite treats into handy notepads while teaching them about creative ways to reuse everyday items.
Notepads or paper
String or shoelaces
Scissors or craft knife
Decide what size your notepad will be based on the box you have. For the pages inside, use notecards, a notepad, binder paper or cut up some paper from an old composition book.
Remove the box spine that's to the right of the design you want to use as the notepad cover. Also remove the top and bottom flaps. You should now have a rectangular piece of cardboard.
Fold the rectangle in half, and make a tight crease. You should now have a "book" shape with a folded spine and a cover that easily opens.
Using scissors or a craft knife with a straight edge, carefully cut the paper to the size of the book cover.
Punch holes in the spine of the cover.
Punch matching holes into the paper.
Bind the notebook together with string or fun colored shoelaces.
Make easy Christmas-tree trim that can be displayed year after year. There is no wrong way to string these festive garlands, and you can never have too many. They also make a sweet accent on the mantle.
Embroidery floss or yarn
Embroidery or other large needle
Cut embroidery floss to your desired garland length. If you want a long garland, make it by connecting several shorter garlands to each other—to avoid tangling.
Knot the embroidery floss or yarn on one end.
Thread the needle, and use it to string the buttons. Simply weave thread up and down through the buttonholes to create a strand. To create a strand where the buttons don't shift, either use a thicker yarn or make a full loop through the buttonholes. To make a full loop, you'll need to go up, down and then back up and down—making a circle-through the buttonholes.
When you near the end of the floss, tie a knot.
Start a new garland, or tie multiple ones together to form a longer piece.