living a well tended life... at any age

dailybuzz moms 9×9: kids’ holiday crafts

Chelsea and Conor have been raised celebrating both Jewish and Catholic holidays – so every December brings Christmas trees and menorahs, wreaths and latkes, stockings and dreidels.

And when they were little – crafts of every kind.

As this was before the internet and Pinterest, I “saved” great ideas by amassing magazine clippings in a bulging Β folder labeledΒ “holiday crafts”. And every year we’d create different handmade gifts and decorations.

I’m so excited to be part of this month’s DailyBuzz Moms 9×9, sharing my favorite kids’ holiday crafts. They are super adorable and meet all of my strictest “kid-craft” criteria:

No hard to find materials or “single-use” tools.

Easy and fun for kids of different ages (as Chelsea and Conor are 5 years apart, this was important – I was always on the hunt for crafts that my 4-year-old could master, yet my 9-year-old would find engaging).

Relatively quick to complete (can you say “attention span”?).

Let’s get started!

Fruit Loop Candy Canes

I love this craft – it is so easy, and do NOT underestimate the adorableness of a bunch of these hanging on your tree (and don’t dismiss them as too “juvenile” for your bigger kids either – just watch what happens when you set out the materials and get started – it’s somewhat addictive).

fruit loop candy canes

Materials
Fruit Loops
Pipe cleaners

Shape the pipe cleaners into candy canes. Bend the bottom ends up into a hook to catch the cereal.

Thread the cereal – either randomly or in a pattern – almost the entire length of the pipe cleaners; make another bend at the top ends to finish.

fruit loop candy canes

Hardware Store Menorah

Though we’ve made our share of menorahs over the years – out of all kinds of materials – these are my very favorite. You can get everything you need at your local hardware and craft stores, and the possibilities for creating unique designs are endless (don’t forget to put your child’s name and the year on the bottom!).

hardware store menorahs

Materials
unfinished wood block, 8-10″ long
acrylic paints
paint brushes
Mod Podge
(9) 3/8″ nuts
(1) 1/2″ nut
glue
assorted decorations (foam or jewel stickers, mosaic tiles, buttons, dry pasta)

hardware store menorahs

Paint the block; let dry completely. Seal with Mod Podge.

Glue the 1/2″ nut on top of the block, in the center. Glue 8 of the smaller nuts – evenly spaced – on either side (you can place a little mark where each nut should go). When dry, glue the remaining Β nut on top of the center nut (this will be the “shamash”).

Attach decorations around the sides and edges.

Orange Bird Feeder

These are so charming and always a hit with my kids. Try to hang them on trees and shrubs that are easily viewed from your window, so you can watch the birds come and feast!

orange bird feeder

Materials
orange
(4) pieces of twine, yarn or string, cut into 24″ lengths
bird seed

With a sharp knife, cut the orange in half – scoop out the flesh. Pierce 4 small holes on opposite sides, about 1/2″ from the top edge of each half . Thread one piece of twine through a hole, and out the opposite end. Repeat with the second piece of twine in the remaining holes (you’ll have an “X”). Gather the ends together and tie in a knot. Repeat with the other half. Fill with bird seed and hang from sturdy branches outside.

orange bird feeder

orange bird feeder

Okay – now it’s your turn! I KNOW you’ve got a bunch of great kids’ crafts up your sleeves – won’t you share them here? I need some new ideas for my little guy!

52 Comments

  1. Caroline on November 27, 2012 at 8:22 am

    YOU are amazing! And I love all these great ideas SO much!

    It doesn’t surprise me in the least that you are crafty because you are one of the most talented people I know!

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 11:45 am

      Thank you Caroline! xo

  2. Sandra on November 27, 2012 at 8:30 am

    Great ideas! As usual. And beautiful photography. You are on fire, my dear, on fire.

    Love the orange bird feeder idea – you usually see oranges as pomanders.

    I’ve also done the pipecleaner/fruit loops or cheerios as a bird feeder as well and hung them outside.

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 11:46 am

      Thanks Sandra – from you that means the world! I love the bird feeder idea – how cute must that be!

  3. Leslie on November 27, 2012 at 8:40 am

    What a great combination of crafts that are easy and still produce awesome results! So often they are either too hard or cheesy. πŸ™‚ Despite 21 years of parenting and five kids I am not crafty AT ALL, so people like you amaze me!

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 11:47 am

      Thanks Leslie! xo

  4. Lacy on November 27, 2012 at 9:12 am

    Love these! Especially the orange bird feeders! How fun and festive. I bet they smell wonderful too. Like a bird’s version of an orange pomander!

    Lovely, Sheri!

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 11:47 am

      I can totally see you doing these with your girls! xo

  5. Teresa Martins on November 27, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    You are really crafty!!! Great ideas… Perfect to pin πŸ™‚

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 2:43 pm

      Thank you so so much! πŸ™‚

  6. Kristina on November 27, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    Love these – especially the birdfeeder! I think I might put this as an activity for the advent calendar!

    • sherisilver on November 27, 2012 at 3:20 pm

      Thank you – so cute, right?

  7. Jessie on November 28, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    Cute ideas Sheri! Thanks for sharing. Do you have any suggestions for cuttings/branches/greens for outdoor planter/pot for the holiday season? I remember seeing so many beautiful ones last holiday season but don’t know what the magic is. Thanks for any suggestions (OR a whole column :)!)
    Jessie

    • sherisilver on November 28, 2012 at 8:46 pm

      I’m DOING a whole column on winter containers next week! Stay tuned!! πŸ™‚

  8. Megan on November 29, 2012 at 4:57 am

    This isn’t really a craft but an easy edible that little hands can help with: http://hellobougeotte.blogspot.fr/2012/11/goodies-for-holidays.html

    If you filled one of these jars with them I think they would make a super cute family-made gift: http://www.youaremyfave.com/2012/11/27/let-it-snow-treat-jars-are-my-fave/

    • sherisilver on November 29, 2012 at 8:09 am

      I love both of these; thank you! (and I’m a huge fan of YAMF!) πŸ™‚

  9. Christa the BabbyMama on November 29, 2012 at 8:44 am

    We haven’t actually done it yet, but I plan to do paper gingerbread men. Print them, color them, glue all manner of stuff on. Easy!

    • sherisilver on November 29, 2012 at 9:46 am

      Easy is good, yes???

  10. MJ @parscaeli on November 29, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    We will be making those Fruit Loop candy canes during our weekend playdates. Thanks so much for the idea!! xo, MJ

  11. Marti on November 29, 2012 at 3:12 pm

    I love the candy cane and orange bird feeder ideas. I don’t have kids but that doesn’t stop me I still want to make the fruit loop candy canes
    Marti

    • sherisilver on November 29, 2012 at 5:52 pm

      There is NO age requirement for fruit loop candy canes (and did you see my friend Sandra’s idea for using them as bird feeders too??) πŸ™‚

  12. MJ on December 9, 2012 at 11:39 pm

    Stumbled upon your blog as I was looking for a new, fresh design for menorahs for my class. Can’t wait to hear their remarks they start painting a block tomorrow! As you described your hometown & I viewed photos, I realized we are in the same area. What a small world.

    • sherisilver on December 10, 2012 at 6:36 am

      Thanks so much! And I know, the longer I write this blog the more I learn about “neighbors” I never knew I had! πŸ™‚

  13. Sue {munchkin munhcies} on December 14, 2012 at 11:24 am

    Love this! I am going to make the candy canes with my munchkins when they all come for Christmas! Thanks!

    • sherisilver on December 14, 2012 at 12:10 pm

      Thanks! Have fun! πŸ™‚

  14. kellie on January 6, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    what great ideas! i especially love the orange bird feeder.

    • sherisilver on January 6, 2013 at 7:11 pm

      Thanks so much! πŸ™‚

  15. Kathy Bandaruk on January 26, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    I just tried this project and blogged about it on my blog, http://www.365daystounstuck.wordpress.com
    Thanks for sharing this awesome project with all of us!

    • sherisilver on January 27, 2013 at 10:01 am

      Thanks so much for the credit! Looks great! πŸ™‚

  16. Barbara on January 29, 2013 at 11:13 am

    First time on your site. Cool, I enjoyed it. Thinking to try orange feeders today

    Thank you

    • sherisilver on January 29, 2013 at 3:02 pm

      Thank you! πŸ™‚

  17. Cindy deRosier on January 31, 2013 at 10:15 am

    I’m the Editorial Assistant for Fun Family Crafts and I wanted to let you know that we have featured your orange birdfeeder project! You can see it here:

    http://funfamilycrafts.com/orange-bird-feeder/

    If you have other kid friendly crafts, we’d love it if you would submit them. If you would like to display a featured button on your site, you can grab one from the right side bar of your post above. Thanks for a wonderful project idea!

    • sherisilver on January 31, 2013 at 2:28 pm

      Oh my – thank you so much!! πŸ™‚

  18. Stacy on February 11, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    My 2 year old and I love making the toilet paper roll bird feeders. We just collect them throughout the week, then spread them with peanut butter, roll them in birdseed and string them with twine. Great, messy fun as long as there are no allergies, but I am sure soy nut butter would attract the birds as well.

    • sherisilver on February 11, 2013 at 3:37 pm

      Ooh!I love that idea – thanks for sharing!

  19. Onycha on March 22, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Hello,

    May I use your photos for the orange bird feeder with an online class for young people I do weekly? It is free, but of course, your photos will be posted, and of course, I will give you credit.

    Thank you.

    • sherisilver on March 22, 2013 at 10:27 pm

      Of course – thank you! I’d love to see the link when it’s up!

  20. Phil on May 24, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    Hi Sheri,

    I love the crafts for kids idea for Christmas. Can I suggest for Christmas 2013 (I know it’s only May but I make them all year round!) making Christmas crackers? They’re an English tradition and kids and adults love them πŸ™‚

    I could help you nearer the time. All you need is some card tubes (toilet rolls), crepe paper, some ribbons and some goodies to go inside. They’re great fun and easy to make.

    Cheers from the UK

    Phil

    • sherisilver on May 25, 2013 at 6:10 am

      Thanks Phil – I’ve always wanted to make those – will put them on my list! πŸ™‚

  21. Froma Nealy on March 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    My daughter and I had so mugh fun making the orange bird feeder, she wants to try other foods. Thank you for the memory making ideas.

    • sherisilver on March 24, 2014 at 4:03 pm

      Oh great! Love hearing that; thanks so much for sharing! πŸ™‚

  22. carol edwards on January 19, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Have been looking for ideas in the line of crafts for my granddaughters, when they come to stay with us. Already have a large basket filled with goodies for them, but these ideas are so cute. Thanks again!

    • sherisilver on January 19, 2015 at 10:19 pm

      That’s great! Enjoy your granddaughters! πŸ™‚

  23. Terry Rice on March 16, 2015 at 5:40 pm

    I think you should check to see if the orange is harmful to the birds. I had chipmunks at one time and put some orange rind in the cage for them and woke the next morning to find them both dead. Might want to check with the vet before doing this for the birds.

    • sherisilver on March 16, 2015 at 6:26 pm

      Thanks for your note – oranges are, indeed, safe for birds!

  24. Anna on June 14, 2016 at 8:56 pm

    These are really great ideas to fun with kids.
    I will try to make these for my son.
    Thank for share !

  25. Rahulji on August 21, 2016 at 2:10 am

    Wowwwwwwwww!!!!nice pictures, these are so nice. And beautiful. Thanks for sharing this post. Looking forward for more from you.

  26. Anna on October 9, 2016 at 1:15 pm

    I love that the orange birdfeeders are all biodegradable. You don’t have to return to the spot and take down any plastic, etc.

    • sherisilver on October 9, 2016 at 2:31 pm

      Thank you! This is one of my all-time favorite crafts!

  27. Best Rated Pocket Knives 2017 on April 8, 2017 at 3:09 am

    My daughter and I had so mugh fun making the orange bird feeder, she wants to try other foods. Thank you for the memory making ideas.

    • sherisilver on April 8, 2017 at 8:35 am

      I’m so glad! Thanks for letting me know! πŸ™‚

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