Category Archives: DIY

DIY Gift Ideas for Kids

The Holidays are such a wonderful time to spend with your children. It’s such a joy decorating the tree, baking cookies, and picking out special gifts for loved ones. When it comes to picking out gifts for my kids, I have learned the hard way that those plastic battery-powered toys may light up their eyes upon unwrapping (and not to mention empty your wallet), but those toys almost ALWAYS end up at the bottom of the toy box, broken, and never to be touched again. They also create more clutter, right?

Last Christmas I tried something a little different. I made a lot of the gifts myself, and I was shocked at how much more my very young children (2&4) appreciated their gifts. They take special care of the gifts that “Mama made me.” It made them feel so special that their mama took time to make something just for them. My 4-year-old sleeps with his crochet snake, “Snakey” every night, and my daughter loves wearing the hat I made her and playing dress-up with the jewelry I made just to fit her bright, outgoing personality.

Making my own gifts for my kids was such a success last year, that I complied a list of ideas and resources for any Mamas that want to give it a try:

Crochet Gifts

I know crocheting isn’t for everyone, but there are some really great free patterns on the internet. Repeatcrafterme has fabulous free patterns and tutorials for hats, stuffed animals, and so much more. This is “Snakey.” You can find the link for the free pattern here. There is also a link for an adorable beginners crochet hat here.

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Story Stones

I thought this idea for Story Stones was so much fun as well. There’s nothing a kiddo loves more than to make up imaginary stories, and sometimes they are so silly. The Artful Parent has a lovely blog post about Story Stones here.

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Sew Them Something Special

There are so many tutorials out there for aprons, pillows, etc. If you aren’t able to sew, this No Sew Sleeping Bag Tutorial from Sunny Days With My Loves is such a sweet idea.

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Activity Kits

I made my kids a Craft Kit last year and I’m pretty sure it was their favorite gift! I just bought a bunch of craft supplies (paint, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, buttons, glue, etc.), and put it all in a nice box.

Ice Cream Sundae Kits are super fun, and so are busy bags for toddlers. B-Inspired Mama has compiled a list of busy bags that are super easy, fun, and educational here.

Really, it doesn’t matter what you make your littles. Believe me though, they will love it more than any store-bought gift. Most of the time what you make is less expensive than purchasing something!

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DIY Recycled Window Picture Frame

I just wanted to share this great picture frame idea with everyone! My fiancé used to be a firefighter, and he found a bunch of old windows in a barn that they were preparing to burn down. They just sat in our shed for a year until we made an awesome picture frame out of one. I am so happy with how it turned out, and it was completely free! Although we did not have to purchase ours, they are pretty easy to find in local antique stores, garage sales, and scrap yards.  Just keep looking and something will turn up!

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Ours had all of the glass still intact, but if you find one that doesn’t have glass, you can always add chicken wire behind it or some sort of decorative paper with smaller pictures.

I love this one from Hollie Day:

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The possibilities are truly endless, and I just love thinking about how that window was in someone’s home for so many years. Think about all of the moments it witnessed… all of the Holidays, laughs, and special times in a home that was probably someone’s pride and joy so long ago. Window panes are definitely much more special than a store-bought frame.

I hope you enjoyed the post and you are now inspired to make a one-of-a-kind frame and conversation piece to put in your home!

Hand Painted Terra Cotta Pots

Pre-K Science for Earth Day!

I have recently started doing “activity time” with my kiddos (1&3), and they are loving it so far. I’ve been trying to implement some sort of learning activity for 30 minutes every day, since my oldest has not started Preschool yet. I absolutely LOVED the activity we did yesterday!

I bought a couple of those cheap $1 terra cotta pots from the store, and I let the kids paint them however they wanted, then after cleaning up, we made a quick run to the home improvement store and I let them pick out a special plant of their choice. My oldest was SO excited. We then planted them, watered them, and sat them in the sunlight!

During the entire process we talked about all of the things plants need to survive, how they grow, and what they do to help us. It was educational, fun, and SUPER messy, but they loved it.

Here’s a picture of the finished product!

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It was fun to see what kind of plant they chose. My son chose a rosemary plant, because we took a moment to smell the herbs, and of course my one-year-old baby girl chose a plant with pretty pink flowers… which she proceeded to rip off of their stems after we planted them 😐 We have now replaced it with a succulent (which I’m going to try and propagate soon!)

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We always talk about how plants grow when planting seeds in the garden, and even my baby girl has learned so much from gardening. They love to help pull weeds and plant baby seeds. My son always kisses the seeds, carefully covers them with dirt, gives them a little pat, and we watch them grow over the next few months. It is just the sweetest thing.

Footprint Butterflies

Check out these great footprint butterflies the kids made yesterday!

They were so easy, and we even did little Eden’s feet. We just blopped different colored paint onto their feet, and then pressed them onto white canvas. After waiting for them to dry, we painted the bodies. We hung the canvas’s on our kitchen wall, and Cameron (our 2 year old) is so proud of his artwork.

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