Archive | activities for kids

The Family Book Festival and a Little Robinson Crusoe “Boat Buildin”

In case you haven’t heard, the Family Book Festival is in full swing over at Jump Into A Book!

Family Book Festival

Friend and client Valarie Budayr came up with this wonderful idea to help parents and kids keep the doldrums of winter away with books and activities. And just to make it one-more-notch COOLER, she polled all her author and blogger friends to find out what their family (or childhood) favorites are. The result is a month of awesome book suggestions for kids and matching activities for the whole family to enjoy during these cold months.

I was honored to be able to be apart of this Family Book Festival and guess what? My contribution is LIVE as we speak! As I was mulling over what book to share for the Family Book Festival, our son Jake brought home Robinson Crusoe as one of his A.R books. He loved it and shared the storyline with me. This inspired me to round up a few of his buddies, make a raid on the craft (and recycling) bin and have a fun afternoon of Robinson Crusoe “boat building.”

Go HERE to read the full story and see all the pictures of our adventure.

Robinson Crusoe boats

Here’s some other REALLY fun and unique offerings that have appeared this month at Jump Into A Book

Family Book Festival: Julia Dweck @juleloves2write & Kingdom Keepers (cool  holographic project 4kids!)

Family Book Festival: An Interview with Author/Illustrator Chris Robertson

chris robertson collage

In honor of the Chinese New Year, mom and super blogger Beth Cheng shared her family’s favorite book The Monkey King and a simply delightful Chinese Paper Craft activity for kids as well. Read more HERE.

Has your family ever read the book The Faraway Tree? Not only is this one of my favorite stories, your family will get a kick out the fun fort-building ideas as well! Read more about Donna Ashton and the Faraway Tree HERE.

NOW, it’s your turn. What book can you read as a family and pull some activities from?

Slow Your Roll: Super Fun (& Cheap!) Cardboard Roll Crafts

 Cardboard Roll Crafts

paper tube crafts

Ever looked at an empty paper towel cardboard tube and thoughts “now, THAT is a work of art…”


Yeah, me either.

BUT I have looked at it as fodder for some fun potential crafts.

Without going into graphic detail, we seem to accumulate lots of cardboard tubes in our house (mainly paper towel and TP). I love recycling and upcycling and it was always in the back of my mind “we should do something fun with these.” Up until recently the paper towels rolls got a bit of a work-out as Der-ta-ders.

You know, put the tube to your mouth like a horn and holler “der-TA-DER!!

I digress.

THEN I came across this awesome tutorial and compilation of tube crafts at RedTedArt. “One Loo Roll-Lots of Potential.” Now THAT just makes me giggle 🙂

cardboard roll crafts

Intrigued by the possibilities of this innocent little cardboard tube and it’s Big Sis the paper towel cardboard tube…I set off to find more ideas!

I found:

FairyTale Castle at Activity Village

paper tube castle

 Just in time for St Patty’s Day, A Wee Little Leprechaun at Spoonful.

tube leprecan

Paper Flower TP Tube Wreath at Mom’s Crafts Space

cardboard tube wreath

I know it’s the wrong time of year but this Advent Calendar Tube Wreath from Spoonful tickled my fancy too. Could also be a Birthday Countdown Calendar!

paper tube advent calendar

What cool crafts have you done with a “Loo Roll??”

Fun Alternatives for Valentines Day for Kids

We love Valentines Day. Especially Valentines Day for kids.

Who am I kidding. We loved any holiday affiliated with chocolate and eating.

However, if you find you are in the V-D-Day rut, here’s some super-cute-fun ideas to to a fresh twist on this holiday of hearts.

Fun and Unique Valentines Day Paper Toys from The ToyMaker: I personally know Marilyn Scott Waters and not only is she very talented, she is a HOOT! I really like her paper toys and her Valentines notes and toys don’t disappoint.

We really like her Valentines Elephant:

Click the image to get the full pattern

Click the image to get the full pattern


 Happy Campers

Click image to get full pattern

Click image to get full pattern

International Book Giving Day: Put a fun spin on Valentines Day by getting some books into the hands of kids:

International Book Giving Day

International Book Giving Day

Three simple ways to celebrate International Book Giving Day!
1. Give a Book to a Friend or Relative. Celebrate International Book Giving Day by giving a child a new, used or borrowed book.
2. Leave a Book in a Waiting Room or Lobby.Choose a waiting room where kids are stuck waiting and there are few to no good books available. Purchase a good book, and deposit your book covertly or overtly in your waiting room of choice. The goal here is to spread the love of reading to kids, so choose a fun book, nothing controversial.
3. Donate a Book.
Wrap up a box of children’s books that your kids have outgrown and get them in the hands of children who could really use a book or two. Donate your books to your local second hand store, library, children’s hospital, or shelter.


I plan to do a school visit with some books in hand and surprise some Little People with the gift of a book on Valentines Day!

What are you doing different this year?


Fun Autumn Activities For Kids

In case you haven’t noticed…Fall is here. I think the dead give-away is the cooler winds that are coaxing leaves to make their decent from tree limbs. Although winter is obviously not far behind, Fall still remains one of our favorite times of year. It is the perfect time for fun autumn activities for kids. Here are some ways to have fun with your rugrats this fall:
Create an autumn yard collage
This is a great way to get your kids involved in beautifying your front lawn for the fall season. Materials you will need to create your autumn yard collage include hay bales, pumpkins (all sizes), scarecrows, witches, cornucopias, etc. Anything related to fall will look wonderful. Stack your hay bales to create a backdrop. Next, place a huge scarecrow (or witch) on the center of the stack. Then add other complimentary fall accessories like gourds, corn shocks, ghosts, etc.
Make a haunted tree
Making a haunted tree is a fun activity for everyone. It is especially great to do right after raking leaves. First, pick the biggest, best tree in your front yard; preferably one with many long, crooked limbs. Next, take small white trash bags and stuff the top half with leaves from your yard. Twist and tie the bag into a knot, or use a twist-tie to close the end where the leaves stop. Turn upside down and you have a ghost! Make as many of these ghosts as you can, then tie them to tree limbs. As the fall winds blow, your ghosts will haunt your tree.
Happy Autumn Cards:
Supply each kid with markers, paper, glue, glitter, stickers, etc. Let them make several autumn cards and write a special message on the inside of each one. After any wet appliqués are dried, gather the cards and take them to your local nursing home to distribute among patients.
What are some of YOUR favorite Autumn activities?

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