When It’s Cold Outside Get Crafty Inside

I’ll be honest.  I’m not a fan of cold weather.  I’ve lived in Michigan my entire life.  But I still don’t like the cold.

I do believe it’s healthy to get outside as much as you can…so we do.  But it’s also nice sometimes to stay inside.  So as soon as the weather gets cooler I’m looking for fun indoor activities.

Around here that means it’s time to get crafty.  Here are some easy fall crafts and activities to do with your kids or by yourself!

  1. Paint with fruits and vegetables – Slice any fruit or vegetable to use as a stamp.  You get all different shapes and sizes.  Plus you can use up produce that is getting old.
  2. Make placemats with wax paper – Use leaves or color a picture and place them between two pieces of wax paper.  Iron the paper until both sides stick together.  Trim the edges.
  3. Make all of your fall/Thanksgiving decorations from nature – Go on a scavenger hunt in your yard or a local park to find sticks, pine-cones, leaves, rocks, etc.  Then get creative making decorations with them.
  4. Make Christmas cards and gifts – It may be early for some, but if you start making cards and gifts now you’ll be less stressed when Christmas approaches.  Plus you’ll have unique, heartfelt, homemade gifts for your friends and family.  Homemade baked goods and spice blends make great presents, as do crafts that you and your children create.
  5. Paint pottery – Find a local paint-your-own pottery studio (like Naked Plates) and create your own masterpiece.  This is a great thing to do with your kids.  Make a serving dish together and use it at all of your holiday gatherings.  Your kids will be so proud.
  6. Make Halloween costumes – There’s still time!  Instead of spending a lot of money to buy a costume, let your kids help make their own.  See how creative you can be using what you have at home.  Is that a fairy princess chef I see?
  7. Recreate the first Thanksgiving – Have your kids help make pilgrim and Indian costumes.  Read about the first Thanksgiving and put on a play.  You can even make a mini feast of what they may have eaten.
  8. Make a countdown chain – Make paper chains to count down to Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Then let your kids cut one ring off each day.
  9. Make art with food…and eat it! – Provide an assortment of sliced fruits, vegetables, nuts, crackers and dips (nut butters, pesto, hummus, etc.) and let your child get creative.  Make a picture on a plate (maybe a face or an animal or even something abstract).  Then eat it!  You can take a picture to capture their creation.
  10. Write a book – Help your child write their own book.  Fold blank paper.  Let them create a story.  If they are young you can write the story as they tell it.  If they are older they can write it themselves.  Then they can illustrate it.  After the book is finished read it together…over and over.  It’s a great way to help them be creative.

Fall is a wonderful time to be outside, breathe the crisp air and see the beauty of nature.  But it’s also a great time to be creative with your kids inside.  It doesn’t have to cost a lot or take a lot of time to stir their imagination and spend quality time together.  Plus you can get some of your holiday preparation done in advance.

What sort of fun activities do you do indoors once the weather becomes cooler?

Mary Voogt is a follower of Christ, a wife, and a mother of two. After 6 years as an electrical engineer she now stays home full time. She is passionate about real food and enjoys spending lots of time in the kitchen cooking and baking from scratch. She blogs at Homemade Dutch Apple Pie on a variety of topics including digestive issues, OCD, anxiety, infertility, natural parenting and healthy food.

Homemade Play-dough

Easter Playdough

photo credit: philscoville

Playing with play dough is a simple rite of passage for children. I fondly remember sitting for hours on end at the table when I was young; building, crafting, mixing and matching. Watching my child now to the same brings me great joy as I watch how accomplished he feels sculpting a new creation.

Store bought play dough is not only expensive, but also filled with preservatives that make me a little squeamish to have around young toddler mouths. Making your own at home is definitely a frugal option, lasts a long time, and is sure to please every kid at home (even the kids at heart). Even more fun is allowing the kids to pick their own colors and help make it – a science lesson for sure, but also a lesson in mixing colors.

No-Cook Play Dough

Ingredients
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup cornmeal (you can get white cornmeal to make dying easier)
1/2 cup salt
1/2 cup warm water
optional – food coloring

Method of Preparation

Mix all ingredients together and knead until pliable. Add additional flour or water if needed to gain the right consistency. Color if desired.

Stove Top Play Dough

Ingredients

1 c. flour
1/3 c. salt
1 Tbsp. oil
1 Tbsp. cream of tartar
1 c. water
optional – food coloring

Method of Preparation

Mix all of the ingredients (minus coloring) together in a pan and place over low heat.  Stir often until it is the consistency of mashed potatoes.  Turn out onto waxed paper and cool until you can handle. In a medium bowl, mix and knead with food coloring until desired color, or mix smaller batches multiple colors. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. (originally found at The Finer Things in Life)

 



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