Posts Tagged ‘thanksgiving’

Festive Cranberry Garlands

November 18, 2009

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Before I had kids, I would buy wire frames and painstakingly weave evergreens to them to create Martha Stewart-like wreaths for the holidays.  I also designed and hand-made our Christmas Cards every year.  Now, I struggle to get my photo cards in the mail and I buy my wreaths at Costco.  Although I sometimes mourn the loss of my adult craft projects, I’m comforted by the fact that I’m blessed with three children who fill our holidays with more joy and beauty than any decoration could ever bring.  I’d trade anything for a hand print turkey made by my three-year old!

This year, we will continue our tradition of making cranberry garlands.  They’re pretty, environmentally friendly, and will look nice at Thanksgiving and even through the holidays.  Last year, the berries looked pretty for a long time, even when they were a little wrinkled.  You can hang them outside on a tree or shrub when you’re tired of them and the birds and squirrels will have a feast of their own.

You will need fresh cranberries, fishing line or dental floss and a yarn needle.  Yarn needles are plastic, not too sharp and can be purchased at craft and fabric stores.  I bought 7cm needles. (Susan Bates brand to be exact.) Make sure the eye isn’t too big, or it will ruin the cranberries.

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First, we pulled a yard or so of fishing line out from the spool and taped it to the spool so that no more could unwind.  Dental floss works well too!  Then, I knotted the free end of the fishing line to the needle so it wouldn’t pull off and had my kids start stringing.  Last year, it was a little challenging for our two-year old, but she could do it with help! 

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You can make the garlands as long as you like.  Just tie them off when they are the length you want.  I love to string them on the chandelier in our dining room for Thanksgiving.  We may make a few strings for our Christmas tree too.  It would be a great project for people sitting around watching football, assuming they’re not on a white couch! 

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Thanksgiving Pine Cone Turkeys

November 16, 2009

I’m reposting this fun Thanksgiving craft blog from last year.  Coming soon…we’ll do a project with a picture of mom or dad your child can carry to help ease separation anxiety. 

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My mother-in-law suggested making pine cone turkeys, so I thought we’d give it a shot.  If you don’t have pine cones lying around the house, take your kids on a walk to find some, or just buy some.  I must admit that I had to buy some at Michael’s since it was wet outside and I wanted to do the project that day. They only had cinnamon scent-drenched cones, which are a little strong, but the kids didn’t mind. 

You will need pine cones, feathers, pipe cleaners and google eyes.  I bought some normal pipe cleaners and some sort of bumpy-looking ones that we cut up to use as turkey heads.  You could also just twist or bend the end of a normal pipe cleaner to form a head.  It doesn’t have to look perfect, you just need enough surface area to glue eyes on your turkey’s head. 

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After we cut the pipe cleaner “head”, we twisted part of a normal pipe cleaner around it to affix it to the pine cone by wrapping it completely around it.   We made legs and feet from pipe cleaners too.  They don’t support the weight of the pine cone very well, but look cute.  Then, the kids just stuck feathers into the pine cones to make turkey tails.  You can have your children use glue, if you want the feathers to stay  put, by dabbing a little glue on the end of the feathers before you poke them into the pine cone.  It works pretty well just to stick them in too. 

Finally, glue some eyes on.  I bought google eyes that have adhesive already on them- what a great invention!

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As usual, the project evolved into making crazy pipe cleaner/feather creatures once the turkeys were complete.  The kids were busy for an hour, needed very little help and the turkeys are very cute.  Good times.

Pine Cone Turkeys

November 13, 2008

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Today I dragged myself to the craft store to buy feathers, pipe cleaners and google eyes.  It was worth the trip.  I try to do most of the projects I post with stuff I have in the house, but I made an exception for this project, since it sounded like so much fun.  The leftovers will go straight into my craft box to be used for another project on another rainy day.

 My mother-in-law suggested making pine cone turkeys, so I thought we’d give it a shot.  If you don’t have pine cones lying around the house, take your kids on a walk to find some, or, God forbid, buy some.  I have to admit that I had to buy some at Michael’s since it is wet outside and I wanted to do the project today. They only had cinnamon scent-drenched cones, which are a little strong, but the kids didn’t mind.

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I bought some normal pipe cleaners and some sort of bumpy-looking ones that we cut up to use as turkey heads.  After we cut the pipe cleaner “head”, we twisted part of a normal pipe cleaner around it to affix it to the pine cone by wrapping it completely around it.   We made legs and feet from pipe cleaners too.  They don’t support the weight of the pine cone very well, but look cute.

Then, the kids just stuck feathers into the pine cones to make turkey tails.  You can have your children use glue, if you want the feathers to stay  put, by dabbing a little glue on the end of the feathers before you poke them into the pine cone.  It works pretty well just to stick them in too. 

Finally, glue some eyes on.  I bought google eyes that have adhesive already on them- what a great invention!

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As usual, the project evolved into making crazy pipe cleaner/feather creatures once the turkeys were complete.  The kids were busy for an hour, needed very little help and the turkeys are very cute.  Good times.