Things To Do With Your Kids When There Is NOTHING To Do

 

If you have a small airport in town that flies in small planes, call and get the schedules, pack a lunch, park, and watch the planes zoom down overhead as they land.  I had this idea last summer and can’t wait to do it this year!

Take a trip to a local bakery, look around, and grab a simple treat

Feed ducks, fish, birds at a park

Take a trip to the public library.  Most people forget this little gem that is full of activities, events, play groups, movies to rent, educational computer games, and all things free!

Go to a friend’s house with chalk and decorate their driveway.  I came up with this idea in 7th grade and we would go at night with a parent driving and bomb someone’s driveway with art and messages.  I called it chalking.  You’re welcome.  You couldn’t be friends with me in 7th grade but yet, you will reap the benefits. It’s an innocent, fun “don’t get caught” thing like toilet papering but with zero clean up for anyone involved.

Do things at the mall other than shop:  ride the escalators, the carousel, visit the candy shop or kiosk , play on the quarter ride-a-longs, or for five dollars, get 10-15 tokens at Chuckie Cheese.

Rent free kids movies at rental chains like Family Video.  Always make sure they clean them for you there first to ensure it will play for you later.

In warmer months, go blueberry/strawberry/apple picking with your kids and family.  Blueberry picking is my most favorite thing to do every summer.

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Dollar store trips are the cheapest of the cheap and your kids will like exploring and finding little cheap thrills.  Give each child one or two dollars and let them grab something to take home with them. It’s entertainment to get them out of the house and entertainment for when they get back.

Go to a place in town that you know is there but just never seem to go to like a local painting place for kids, a new playground on another side of town, museum, putt putt, planetarium, etc.

Go look around a pet store.  Sometimes you can watch them wash and groom the dogs at places like Pet Smart.  The little ones think it’s fun/funny/who cares, it’s free.  One of our local places has a big pond in the back where you can feed the Koi fish.  If you start digging around your hometown, little things like that to do will always pop up.

Visit your local humane society.  They always take volunteers and one job is walking the dogs on the grounds.  They will match the size of dog to the child.  I know because they wouldn’t let me walk a Great Dane when I was 19 because I only weighed 100 pounds, haha.

Make a list of things for kids to find outside: a rock, a bird, a dandelion, an ant, something pink, etc. You can make it a scavenger hunt, a race, or just something to give them a goal to meet to see if they can find everything.  This is also fun to do on a long drive.

A personal favorite that I do with my kids is go to a Pet Co/Pet Smart type of store and let your kids fill up doggie treat bags.  WE DON’T EVEN HAVE A DOG and do this on a monthly basis.  We make treat bags for when we visit our friends and families with pets.  It’s so cheap and they feel like they are at a candy store, but you can pass on the cavity and junk and do something out of the box.  Both of my girls can get a bag of dog “Oreos”, animal cracker looking cookies, toothbrush dog bones, and so on and I can get BOTH bags for 2-4 dollars.  They love doing this!

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Fill up the kitchen sink with bubbles and toys…after you have sanitized the mess out of it.

Go bowling and check out http://www.kidsbowlfree.com/.  This site tells you which bowling lanes in your city offer daily to weekly free bowling for kids.  (If you are local to me, sorry to disappoint that there are no participating lanes here.)

Fly a kite

Go to the grocery and pick out a recipe and cook together

Go to grocery and have your kids each pick three new or exotic foods they haven’t tried and go home and have a taste test.  It’s cheap, easy and they may just find something they like.  Have you ever tried a starfruit?  This “activity” is how we did.

Visit a story hour at Barnes and Noble or your public library

Search Pinterest for DIY things to do with kids at home.  It won’t disappoint.

Walk around a toy store and look at all their goodies.  Mine like to go to Toys R Us and “play” in the power wheels they have out.  They don’t move but those kids can fake drive for a good thirty minutes.

Check out your local gymnastics facilities and see if they offer open gym play time during the weeks.

Make cards for friends and family far away and mail them

Go to a restaurant where kids eat free

Check in to your local Home Depot/Lowes etc. and see when the offer the days where kids can come and build things/plant something etc., all for free!

Make something to eat at home and deliver it to your neighbors

Call a mom friend and do a toy swap.  You each gather up three or four toys from your house, meet up with them, and swap a few toys for a few days.  Free and sure to keep your kids busy for a while.

Build a fort

Go to Sam’s Club on a Saturday and go taste all the free foods they offer.  It’s fun not knowing what will be there and it sure beats staring at the walls.

Let your kids tear into your make-up and do your make-up or their own

Buy a 2 dollar bag of birdseed and let them loose in the yard

Doughnut shop runs will get you out of the house and everyone can get something to eat for typically 5 dollars or less.

Go to a park with a ball, book, blanket, kite, toys, etc. and enjoy the outdoors together playing, but not on the playground.  Have a change of scenery from your own backyard.

Check out books on Cd and cuddle together in a bed or in the living room and listen to stories. I love doing this because it involves NO screen time.  It really gets their minds working and encourages good listening skills.

 

 

 

 

 

Creative Capri Suns For Parties

 

We signed up to bring drinks to my daughter’s preschool class and it would pain me to just bring in…well…just regular drinks.  To flair it up a bit, I turned our drinks into a craft and made little Capri Sun people.  You could do a million different themes and variations on these for parties.

Ours were simple.  I took some awesome coordinating card stock strength scrapbook paper and two packs of huge googly eyes I found at Kroger.  I made little bows for the “girl” Capri Suns and the not so shocking, mustaches for boys.   I cut out my own template, stacked the paper and cut four or five bows/mustaches at a time. I dabbed on the hot glue and my girls stuck them on and in about 15 minutes, we were all done!

Cheap, easy and fun for the kiddos.  Without further adieu, I present Capri Sun ladies and gents or for Valentine’s Day, Capri Sun couples?

 

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PIN ME!

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12 Creative Parties For Kids

 

 

 

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“Uno” For A 1st Birthday

Cutest play on words I’ve ever seen… The source of this Etsy image is no longer available but you can find tons of Uno Parties on Pinterest and there are loads of good examples to look at there.  Shock, shock…

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Source  items photographed are from Etsy and no longer offered  Photo: www.rcphotography.com

Wipe Out Party

Based off the show Wipe Out, this is a fun outdoor, active obstacle course water party!

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Source  www.popsugar.com

 

Arcade Party

Sometimes parties are a arcades but throwing one somewhere else with the arcade theme….yes!!

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Source www.weheartparties.com

 

One Year In A Flash

This might be my favorite and most creative party theme:  a year in a flash.  Cameras to play on the flash and the idea of time flies in a flash, all in one.  Killed it, girl.  See the rest of this party here.

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Source  http://blog.hwtm.com/

 

Easter Theme Party/Holiday Themes

This party was for my girls.  They have birthdays in April right smack dab around Easter.  It’s fun to take a neighboring holiday and turn it into a birthday theme.  They loved their double Easter themed party and you can see it all here.  Their party favors were the large eggs below and they were hidden in the yard.  Since the party was for my 4 and 2 year old, no one could read so these picture tags were made of each child so they knew which egg was theirs when they came upon it.

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Source  www.the1shundred.com

 

Curious George DRIVE-IN Theme Party

I have never seen a party like this!  Personalized drive-in “car” boxes for each child with food trays for snack on the side.  They all “parked” outside and watched a movie on the big screen.  I die….

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Source www.blog.hwtm.com

 

Picnic Birthday Party

Baskets, balloons, and blankets all over the lawn.  Teddy bears and chalkboard signs.  Precious!

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Source http://redtri.com/summer-picnic-party-ideas/

 

Tie Dye Party Theme

This is so fun for kids and pre-teens alike. This is also a theme that boys can have fun with too if you get them at the right age.  Colorful and there are so many party decor items that can play off of this.  And, you have to love a party theme that also provides a fun activity, too.

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Source http://chaoticallycreative.com/2014/07/tie-dye-party/

 

Cake Boss Party

The details of this party are great and you should check out the full photo gallery on the link below.  Personalized aprons, everyone decorating their own cakes, cupcake liners used in several ways for decor/accents….  Good job whoever’s mom threw this party.

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Source http://blog.hwtm.com/2011/09/sweet-cake-boss-baking-birthday-party/

 

Cheerios Party

Why not a party themed with a one year old’s favorite snack? This party paid enough attention to detail by making things with Cheerios that my hands hurt just looking at it!

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Source http://www.karaspartyideas.com/2012/04/cheerios-first-birthday-party.html

 

Lumberjack Party

There are a lot of little guys who would look really cute at their lumberjack party!  It makes me smile really….

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Source http://catchmyparty.com/parties/little-lumberjack-2nd-birthday-2

 

Princess and the Pea Party

I love book themed parties and this old classic fairy tale makes one stinkin’ cute and unique party!

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Source http://www.karaspartyideas.com/2011/11/princess-and-pea-party.html

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DIY Valentine’s For Kids

 

 

 

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Love “Bugs” with gummi worms, Have a “Jolly” Valentine’s Day…seriously cute!  From www.shanty-2-chic.com
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Colorful, fun, non-candy and cute.  I love the card with it.  From www.thenerdswife.com

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 So for a kid’s class, don’t do a scratch off offering foot rubs but you could condense the idea into a single scratch off heart that says a fun message.  Tutorial on making a scratch off card from www.pintriedit.com

 

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 Dollar store multi-packs of gum plus this printable=BAM!  From www.passionforsaving.com

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If you are bringing a healthy snack or want to give one as a Valentine, you can totally write on bananas and be an amazing person.  From

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This is an easy and fun Valentine for you kids to make and give.  Cheap too!  From www.parents.com

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 Piper cleaners and kisses make bling rings!  From www.momontimeout.com

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Dollar store shades in bags with cute tags….lots of rhyming. From www.growingajeweledrose.com

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I love everything about these!  It appeals to both my practical nature and need to be What About Bob in public with kids.  Flu season loves you Vanlentine’s Day. There is a printable! From www.somewhatsimple.com

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Cheap and easy:  I am stuck on you bag of stickers.  Next?  From www.love-the-day.com

Easy DIY Silhouette

 

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If you have a steady hand, I promise on your favorite granny that you can do this easy DIY silhouette.  I did one of each member of my family and this year, I decided to do one as a gift for my sister-in-law.  Here is my simple tutorial!

 

Supplies:

acrylic paint for silhouette in color of your choice

paint for wood canvas

 quality fine to medium-fine tipped paint brush

photograph of person you wish to paint

quality scissors

pen

sealer if desired

Steps:

1.  Take a picture of your subject’s profile, neck up against a solid background to make outlines distinct.  Take picture close enough so that there is only a slight margin around the profile.  Why?  This way when you choose the size you wish to print your picture, whatever size you enlarge it to be will also be the same size of the actual profile.  So if you need your silhouette to be a 5 by 7, if the image takes up the whole picture, you can be sure that your silhouette will be a 5 by 7 when you print if you leave only a small margin around the profile

2. Paint canvas/surface you wish to put your silhouette on if needed. I painted and distressed mine first.

3.  Take printed picture of subject’s profile and cut out slowly with a good pair of scissors to get accurately all of the lines of the profile, neck, head, etc.

3.  Lay cut out silhouette on to surface and trace.

4.  Using the acrylic paint of your choice, take your time to paint the outline steadily.  A good paint brush will make this much easier and precise.

5. Finish painting in the remaining space of the silhouette.  I typically do two coats.

6. Seal portrait if desired.

7. Say “I’m a boss!” You’re done.

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I didn’t like the above orientation so I flipped it for the final product.

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You can use this technique in a million ways including cutting out animals and people on patterned paper,  making paper silhouettes if painting them scares you.  You can silhouette just about anything and cut them out of any medium that creates clean edges.

My sis-in-law loved this gift and I loved giving it. I wrote my nephew’s full name and age on the backside for keepsake.  Pin, follow and enjoy!

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The Cutest Way To Give A Gift Card

 

Some people don’t like giving gift cards because they think they are impersonal.  I’m definitely not in that category because nothing gets me going like guilt free money to burn in a store I love!

If you want to add a creative touch or personalize a gift card, why not package it in a really cute way?  Enter mason jars for gift card packaging!  I used the same materials to make my DIY Mason Jar Snow Globes but instead, ditched the glitter and water and affixed a gift card inside.  Using a little hot glue, I lined the bottom edge of a gift card and snuggled it in between craft pine trees.  I put both of the teacher gift-gift card jars side-by-side in a wire basket and personalized each card with a chip board letter that I painted red to match.  My little girl dictated the message inside to her teachers with awesome things like, “Merry Christmas.  I love you.  You look like a candy cane.”

The gift cards were small, but cute and practical and who wouldn’t love to get a gift in something like this? The crafter in me would re-use all of the components if I were to get this gift.  Actually, I think I’ll keep it because I love it.  Just kidding… Or….Okay, I’ll give it to them.

If you are really fun, you can actually make the jars into the snow globe with the gift card inside.  Snow globe gift card packaging?  I might choke on a candy cane I’m so excited about that idea.

Put anything you want in a mason jar to make this packaging party, season, or person specific.  The possibilities are endless!  Here’s to hoping that two pre-school teachers like this gift as much as I do!

Follow, pin, share, and enjoy!

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In my dreams, I have that pillow-y fake snow in the bottom of this basket.  In my dreams I also don’t take blog images with my cell phone so I guess, we can’t all be winners.

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Alone, it’s simple and may need a little pizazz but when packaged with the wire basket and cards, it’s ballin’ out of control.  If only the fake snow…..

Earn The World’s Easiest Free Gift Cards To Great Places

 

Using Bing Rewards, you can earn points towards gift cards just for searching via Bing.  You can use your rewards to get gift cards in five dollar increments to awesome places like Starbucks or Amazon.  My husband and I have worked the heck outta those Starbucks gift cards.  Since we started about 5 months ago, we’ve earned between us both about 35 dollars in Starbucks gift cards and 15 dollars to Amazon.  That’s 50 smackers for no effort.  After all, I already use Bing anyways. It arrives right to your email and it is so easy to get and redeem.

You can earn by searching by cell or PC but PC searches will earn you the most points. Daily you can earn up to 15 points on your PC and 10 points on your cell.  If you earn all your points everyday, it’s about a gift card every 20 days.  The KEY is that you can have an account AND up to five other members of your household.  In that way you can earn more quickly and combine your rewards.  They will come to separate accounts but you can use all of your redemption codes at once. Holler ballers!

They run little extra ways to earn as well (e.g. double credit or more on searches on the weekends, credits for checking out certain things, etc.)

How easy is it?  Simply go to your PC, sign in the account you can create via the link embedded below and click through 15 headlines.  You don’t even have to read them, just click!  The same goes for your cell phone.  You can earn all of your credits really quickly in a day just by clicking back to back.

And y’all, who doesn’t like a little free drink to Starbucks?  I can click on some links for that all day long, folks.  Bing is happy. I’m happy.  We are a good couple.

You can earn Shutterfly prints and photo books, a months Hulu subscription, gift cards to the movies, a whole cornucopia of stuff.

Want to do it and be Bing rich like me?  Use this link to open your account and get to clickin’ and earnin’!

Share this with your buddies so they can be gift card spectacular, too.

 

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Washi Tape Gift Tags

 

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Buy blank mini cards and envelopes and embellish with washi tape.

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I bought these cheap paper doily die cuts from Hobby Lobby in three colors. Use them with stickers and wrap them in washi and holy cow, I love!  I originally made a version of these for my baby shower in a box that I did for Shutterfly.  At my craft party, my friend made the two bigger bag tags/gift boxes.  The “Just For You” Stickers came from Hobby Lobby and were used in the baby shower box blog as well.

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Wrap chip board letters in washi tape.

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 Bakers twine is a cute combo with any gift in a million ways and I’m loving using it with these tags like the one I made above for the Spice Tea gift bottles.

I’ll be posting a few more of these tags that I made on my Facebook page.  Follow me there and on Pinterest.  Pin and enjoy!

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