I used to be crafty. I’d love to say that I still am – and deep down, I would love to pull that side back out, but the reality is that I have 3.5 young children with me 24 hours a day. (Do you like how I added the ½? A pregnant belly definitely counts as a half.) I can still pull off one or two really neat crafts a season, but I just don’t have the time or energy or willpower or cleaning tools to tackle most of the crazy intense crafts that moms out there are “pinning.” Call me lazy, call me smart, or just bring wine and come hang out with me. Our kids can do a few of these crafts while we enjoy actual adult conversation. I’ve scoured the internet, collecting the simplest, but sweetest holiday craft ideas that you can pull off in a moment’s notice. Some may require a trip to the dollar store if you are low on supplies, but really comb through those junk drawers – I bet you can find everything at home. Ornament Ideas: Ribbon and Stick Tree: http://www.allfreekidscrafts.com/Kids-Christmas-Crafts/Ribbon-Tree-Homemade-Christmas-Ornaments
Or it could look something more like this if my kids were involved:
Clear out the ribbon scraps from the giftwrap drawer. Any color combination will do. In my house, I’ll have a child use all blue, one who’ll want pink, purple, yellow, and fuchsia, and one who will just want to throw sticks. Melted Snowman: http://www.occasionallycrafty.com/2012/12/melted-snowman-ornament.html
I would stick with a clear plastic ball ornament and shredded white paper or glitter. To make it even easier of a craft, I would have the kids scavenge for tiny twigs outside, drop them in with a pair of google eyes and triangle scrap of orange. Cardboard Cookies: http://www.thecraftycrow.net/2010/12/ornament-advent-day-7woven-cookie-stars.html
You know you have cardboard boxes arriving pretty much daily from wherever you are clicking on late at night. Cut out a few circles and slice the sides a bit. Hand your little ones some thick thread or yarn and have them start winding! Popsicle Tree: http://happyhooligans.ca/easy-christmas-crafts-for-kids/
This one is right up my “last-minute-I’m-not-lazy” craft alley. Markers, sticker shapes, pomp poms, paper, and glue. You can even add a picture to the middle. Glitter Ball Ornaments: http://theornamentgirl.com/blog/being-crafty/how-to-make-glitter-christmas-ornaments-diy/
These are definitely beautiful. I’d invest in plastic ornaments though. This craft isn’t as much fun for the kids, but it does make a great gift for the kids to give to neighbors or family. Candy Cane Pipe Cleaners: http://fountainavenuekitchen.com/holiday-crafts/
Not going to lie, this one will require me to amazon prime myself some beads two days prior to the project. But that’s no biggie – I order crap just about daily from amazon, so I’ll just toss it in the cart.
This is pretty self-explanatory: Thread beads onto pipe cleaner and bend into a candy cane shape. Monitor young kids to make sure beads aren’t inserted into nose or mouth. Decorations: Pine Cone Trees
We create these every year, simply because pine cones can be found everywhere come late fall. I dry them out in the oven all afternoon before painting them with the kids. I let them go wild with whatever decorations they want. I encourage them set up a Christmas scene and use their miniature figurines for imaginative play. Pipe Cleaner Christmas Tree:
No link for this one, as the kids and I sat down and decided to make our own decorations last night. My 6 year old created this adorable little tree! She wrapped the pipe cleaner around itself and pulled each end until it stood on its own. Then she added pipe cleaner scraps. Easy!
Popsicle Stick Reindeer: http://www.craftsbycourtney.com/how-to-crafts/popsicle-stick-reindeer/
Paper Plate Crafts: http://www.craftymorning.com/christmas-paper-plate-crafts-for-kids/
Because you have plenty of plates lying around. It’s time to use them. Elf
: Cut-up scrap or tissue paper, plates, construction paper, glue, scissors, and google eyes. The glue is bound to be messy, but you can pour some in a paper cup and let your kids use a small paint brush instead of squeezing the bottle all over the table. Wreath
: The link has a really cute idea, but I’ll share ours too. I cute the center circle from a plate and let the kids paint the outer “wreath.” I set a platter full of glitter glue, ribbon, pom poms, and whatever scraps I can find on the table. The kids get sticky, but my involvement is minimal. I like to do this craft the Tuesday before the cleaners come. Santa:
Cotton balls, glue, and paper. There are several ways to create this craft. You can cut a hole so your child can hold the plate over his face, or leave it whole and color it all. Snowman:
Paper plates, construction paper, and a glue stick. This craft would be great for a playdate. Limited mess, cute results. Reindeer: http://www.craftymorning.com/paper-plate-reindeer-craft-kids/
Markers may be cleaner than paint, but the option is yours for this cute little deer. Paper Plate Christmas Tree: http://www.creativefamilyfun.net/2014/12/paper-plate-christmas-tree.html
If you don’t have pomp poms lying around the house, then I envy you. I find them in my bed, under the couch, and in the kitchen cabinets regularly. Paint a paper plate, cut in half and roll into a cone. Bust out the hot glue gun, or the elmer’s glue, and decorate away. Party Fun
Last year, we hosted the entire
family for Christmas. I’m talking extended family’s extended family and all. The night before they showed up, I decided to create something ridiculously silly that would make sure to be a great icebreaker. I took card stock in holiday colors and cut out Christmas-Inspired costumes. I made a Santa hat, Elf hats, Reindeer antlers, Rudolph noses, Candy Canes, Hot Cocoa mugs, etc. I then taped these cut-outs to BBQ skewers. They were used for photo props! Not only did they break the ice, but after several bottles of wine, and way after midnight – after Santa had dropped off the gifts, these suckers made for a hilarious bonding time. Mind you, I did cut them out after a few glasses of wine, so I’m sure you can make them cuter, but no sweat if not. Mine were loved just the way they were! AND – they are out again this year.