Join for Free              | 
Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg
The other day I had a big discussion with my friend about shopping and realized that people shop very differently. For example, when my friend shops for clothes, she usually looks for cheap stuff that she knows would not last long but is not too concerned about that because after all, she did not pay too much money. I, on the other hand, like to buy a little bit more expensive things knowing that I will wear them for a long time. I am not a teenager anymore so I am not going to grow out these clothes, so I am usually more willing to invest more money for a better quality and material. I do not see why for some people it seems that it is much cheaper to buy low quality clothes. They usually lose their shape and color easily and you end up throwing them out after few weeks and then buying new clothes.

Clothes represent us and who we are, and even though we tend to say that we do not judge by the looks, we usually do. I think when you buy such things like clothes, you should not be afraid to spend a little bit more money because these are the things that are worth investing. And by investing, I do not mean that you have to put all your savings to it. There are many great ways how you can invest in something and save at the same time. Overstock coupons is one of the ways of doing that. In this online shop you can find clothes that are a little bit more expensive, but their brands are known for a really good quality. But do not start worrying about that yet. The great thing there is that prices are not fixed and with overstock discounts deals you can make your own price. It is much more expensive to buy a cheap sweater that after the third wash will look horrible, and then buy a new one. By having a one good sweater can save you a lot of money and with overstock discount for it you can save even more money than buying in the actual store.

Clothes are one of the things that are worth paying a little bit more. It is usually much better to have less clothes and mix and match them creating a new look. And if you need something else to spice it up a little bit, just use an overstock discounts to buy stylish accessories. A right accessory will help you to create a completely new look and stand out and they are one of the cheapest ways to change your wardrobe.

Dressing up is supposed to be fun and you should not spend tons of money if you want to look nice. Yes, some basic pieces that every self-respecting woman must have are worth investing, but investment necessarily means spending every single penny you have. Fashion can be fun and affordable and with overstock.com you will feel it.

Chameleon_logo

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg
In most family homes the kitchen is the room in which the smaller kids spend most of their time. Children love getting involved in what’s going on and like to be at the heart of operations, and a family kitchen is usually full of the sort of bustle and activity that kids adore.

 

Kitchen learning

Most parents don’t think of the kitchen as being a suitable environment for learning and play. There are, however, loads of great opportunities for constructive interaction with your kids in the kitchen that, happily, do not involve a great deal of mess. Here are a few simple ideas.

 

Preliminaries

Kitchen environments can obviously be dangerous, so all scissors, knives, cleaning solutions, recently boiled water and anything else that may become a hazard should be locked away. Also, as kids can be messy around food, covering things like coffee machines and other equipment and having easy-clean shutters will make the job of cleaning up afterwards much easier.

 

Find out about food

Many kids today have no idea about the origins of different common foodstuffs, either environmentally or geographically. Finding out more about food and where it comes from is an activity perfectly suited to the kitchen. Get a few examples of common foods such as fruit, noodles, pasta and tins together on the table and start by asking if they can tell the names. They might know about apples, but mangoes may be a new one to them. Explain where and how the stuff is made, such as pasta in Italy and noodles in China. You could even have a world map on the wall to help, or a globe.

 

Make pasta jewelry

It’s simplicity itself to make a bracelet or necklace from pasta. Use a mixture of macaroni and long penne, and you’ll need a supply of thick string or thread. To add sparkle to the finished piece, which all kids love doing, have some glitter and PVA glue or even bright paint at the ready. Threading pasta pieces onto the string is good practice for hand-eye coordination. Start by sticking one end of the string onto the table with tape to make sure that the pasta doesn’t keep slipping off. When they’ve done, add the paint or glitter and leave the whole thing to dry.

 

Create a collage

Textured materials abound in a kitchen environment and kids will love creating a tactile collage out of different things. You can use pieces of kitchen roll, foil, old egg boxes, sponges, greaseproof paper and anything else that takes your fancy. Collect it all together on the table and provide child-friendly scissors and glue to see what masterpiece transpires.

As an active and fun learning environment a kitchen can hardly be bettered, and it certainly beats plunking your child in front of the TV or DVD player. Kids are naturally creative and love exploring their surroundings, and for them the kitchen is the perfect classroom. If you’re worried about potential mess, cover your more delicate kitchen fittings but be prepared to let rip and have a good time.

piggy bank made from trash

Piggy Bank Made from Trash from the Kitchen

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

A craft room is the place where all that mad, creative energy inside the head gets turned into stuff. It should be a room that inspires as well as soothes, a space that allows us the freedom to create alongside practical considerations that make it function as well. A separate room in the home dedicated to craft purposes makes for a rewarding experience, enriching the lives of passionate crafters.

Get organized

Whatever artistic endeavor takes place behind the doors of a craft room, whether it's quilting, jewelry, bead-work or scrapbooking, organization is key. With so many materials and component parts to marshal, an almost military approach to storage and tidiness helps keep things on track. Chances are the dimensions of the room are small, so neat and compact storage works best. Pretty glass jars lined up along shelves are eye-catching as well as practical, and suspended hooks and hanging storage systems exploit space above head height. Some storage will need to be easily accessible from a seated position, so place shelves, boxes and cupboards carefully.

Comfortable crafting

A workstation, desk or table is essential in a craft room. For added flexibility, consider an extending dining table which can be large when necessary but shrinks to a more practical size when not in use. This type of table is also wonderful when children or other adults are joining in on a craft project and extra workspace is required. Choose an ergonomic, supportive work chair with adjustable height settings to ensure a comfortable seating position. When crafting, it is common to be seated in the same position for long periods, so make comfort a priority.

Let there be light

Set up work benches close to windows to benefit from natural light. Fit adequate overhead lighting and additional task lighting over workstations. Fine needlework or jewelry is virtually impossible without good lighting.

Personality and color

A craft room should zing with energy and be an inspiration to those using it. Decorate walls in soothing shades with bright accent colors in the cushions, flooring or window treatments. Give a craft room some personality by repurposing an old armoire as a craft station or storage base, filling its interior with shelves, hooks, reels and other useful means of keeping materials organized. 

Craft room

Inspiration station

An ideas board for fixing up inspirational clippings, personal mementos and photographs is a good way of personalizing the space as well as keeping paperwork off the work surfaces. This constantly changing feature of the room should be easily reached and visible from the workstation, so that it offers stimulation and inspiration at all times. 

Get practical

Choose a flooring that is easy to sweep or vacuum at the end of a long session. Setting up the craft room in a quiet area, away from busy parts of the house, will give it a more peaceful, creative ambiance. Some crafters enjoy listening to music or radio whilst they work; others like to brew a pot of tea or coffee – plan space out for such luxuries if desired.

With a little planning, forethought and initiative, a smoothly functioning craft room can be set up. Why not put some of these ideas to use and set those creative energies free?

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Welcome to Piggy Giggles - Activities and Crafts for Kids

Our goal is to draw families together by providing wholesome activities for kids and parents to do together.  Help us grow by visiting often, joining our community and submitting your favorite crafts.  We want to provide a way for parents and teachers to connect, share ideas, and show off your kids' craft creations!  Our Activities for Children are constantly growing.  Our Crafty Piggy section features Crafts for kids, check it out!  Don't forget, enter your email address in the box under "Follow Us" so that you'll receive all our newest crafts by email!!

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

As children, we always had a teddy for a best friend, or that constant companion Mr.Bunnysworth. “Teddy bears and many other stuffed animals are most often among the first toys handled by a child. These toys are considered to be soft and safe for little kids, and have various educational benefits,” resource site 82Who.com shares.

stuffed animals

There are so many ways our beloved stuffed companions can help a child develop and learn life lessons. Here are some instances:


Transition to Schooling
Toddlers transitioning to kindergarten school address their concerns in various ways. Given that they are still exploring how to communicate their feelings and thoughts, their attitude or reactions can be easily misunderstood as misbehaving. Health.Harvard.edu tackles this transition issue that all kids will go through. One suggestion they provide is “try to do some play therapy at home. Small figures, stuffed animals, or puppets will do. Have your ‘actors’ experience a transition to a new place. Don’t forget to ‘act out’ coping strategies.”


Interest Identification
Role-playing is always a good way for a child to discover who he or she is and what interests him or her. With the unisex nature of stuffed toys, they are perfect for play and learning activities. Social etiquette, and other interpersonal skills can be learned provided you guide the child to be open to where he or she wants to go. Never impose. Many toy retail stores have this challenge on not imposing what should be played by who, and although still adjusting, brands like Marks & Spencer have made it a point to address diversity as pointed by many consumers.


Dealing With Loss
Dealing with the death of a pet is a good way to prepare children in becoming emotionally capable of dealing with the loss of loved ones. Stuffed animals can play an integral role. In one of the coping suggestions of Pet HealthCare Gazette, “allow your child to pick out a stuffed animal that resembles the family pet, pretty flower arrangements to display at the pet’s funeral and even a small tree to plant in honour of the animal.”


Overcoming Fears
It is wise to use a child’s companions to better express emotions, especially fear. “Use puppets or stuffed animals to practice social skills and work through fears with younger children. This is also a good way to practice talking about emotions,” a parenting article by BuffaloNews.com highlights.

So as a parent, you also need the creativity and imagination to make use of your child’s furry, stuffed friends so they grow up well-equipped to face the social world. What creative ways have you done to teach your kids life lessons using their favourite teddy?

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

bordrum turkey

If you're planning a family holiday to Bodrum this summer, you needn't worry about hearing the dreaded "I'm bored". This beautiful corner of Turkey has plenty of things to see and do for all ages, and more than enough activities to keep the little ones entertained. You can find out more about Bodrum breaks online here - www.thomascook.com/lp/1x6-enbynk/holidays-bodrum - and in the meantime, here are just a few of our favourite family attractions in Bodrum:

St Peter's Castle

Capture your children's imagination with a trip to Bodrum's famous landmark, St Peter's Castle. It was built in the mid 15th century using marble and stones from the mausoleum, complete with moats, fortified walls and turrets. Take the kids for a tour of the castle and discover various attractions including a glass-blowing workshop, a courtyard cafe, a chapel and various marine sights including a reconstructed ship and the remains of ancient wrecks. Play pirates around the magnificent fortified walls before treating them to an ice cream as you enjoy the views across Bodrum and out to sea.

Museum of Underwater Archaeology

Kids and museums don't always mix, but this one is quite something. It's based within St Peter's Castle so you can't miss it. Inside the museum you'll find incredible Bronze Age shipwrecks and ancient trinkets, such as Roman glass, ancient coins and jewelry, bronze daggers, and even gold treasures including a crown. These gold pieces are thought to have belonged to Queen Ada, the last Carian queen who was reinstated by Alexander the Great. Older kids will love the creepy dungeons at Gatineau Tower, where enemies were held captive and tortured. Be warned, the torture display might not be suitable for young eyes - especially as the gate's ancient inscription reads "Where God Does Not Exist". Enter if you dare!

Camel Beach

There's only so much history the kids can take in before they get bored, so with that in mind, no trip to Bodrum is complete without some fun on the beach. Bodrum's local Camel Beach is a great spot and, yes, it has camels too! Laze out on golden sands, paddle in the shallows or take photos of your kids enjoying camel rides. It's a great way to relax and the little ones are bound to have plenty of fun too.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

If you are a dog lover you will no doubt find the idea that there are countless dogs currently living in animal shelters without homes of their own.  If you feel strongly about it you may want to think about ways in which you could help those dogs to lead a happier life.  There are two main ways in which you can do this: by adopting or fostering a dog, or through voluntary work helping a charity like the RSPCA with the never-ending task of rehoming dogs.

dog at animal shelter

Voluntary Work

There are quite a few ways in which you can help an animal charity like the RSPCA through voluntary work.  Their website has a list of current volunteering vacancies and you can select those that are located close to where you live.  You are sure to find vacancies that suit your skills and personality and sometimes training can be given to willing volunteers for more specialist roles. 

You could volunteer to be a driver, transporting dogs between shelters or to and from shelters and their new homes; you could volunteer to help in the shelters themselves, feeding, grooming and exercising the dogs.  The RSPCA also needs people to raise awareness of their projects and to help with fundraising activities. 

If you have particular skills, for example if you have a background or experience in office or computing work or can offer practical skills such as joinery, plumbing or gardening then it would be extremely helpful to the RSPCA if you could put those skills to use in their administration teams or in and around the shelters.  If you volunteer these skills for free then the charity does not have to pay someone else to provide them.

Fostering or Adopting

The task of rehoming dogs is central to the work of the RSPCA animal shelters.  You may have a dog or dogs of your own already and do not feel able (financially or in terms of time) to care for another dog; or perhaps a member of your family may have an allergy – in any of these cases then putting yourself forward for voluntary work to help with the task of rehoming is a very useful and valuable alternative to fostering or adopting a dog yourself.

But if you do feel able to provide a good home for a dog or dogs, then please contact the RSPCA for details of how to do this in your area. 

Foster carers provide crucial support for dogs that may have been mistreated or abandoned, helping them to recover properly and feel secure.  Sometimes the RSPCA may have taken a dog into their shelter after allegations of abuse have been made: in those cases, the owners are presumed innocent until proven guilty and the dog cannot be permanently rehomed unless and until they are found guilty.  In the meantime the dog needs a home and this is where foster carers are vital.

Smaller branches may need to rely on foster carers rather than keep their dogs in kennels, so get in touch with your local branch to see if you can help.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Sometimes a bouncy castle and a party-bag just don’t cut it. Below are 5 slightly different party ideas to consider for your child’s birthday or another special occasion, and you can browse a selection of kids' clothes on Woolworths' site if you're in need of fancy dress ideas. 

party ideas for kids

1. Zumbatomic Parties

The recent meteoric rise of Zumba dance classes has inspired Zumbatomic children’s parties. The children will learn a fast-paced dance routine interspersed amongst fun party games to make for a great children’s party. Although girls may usually favour typical dance parties, this fun-filled party with club-themed dance music makes it appealing for young girls and boys alike.

2. Children’s Quad Bikes

Suitable for children above the age of 6, mini-quad bikes are fun, safe and exciting, and provide the child with the buzz of being able to control a motorised vehicle at such a young age. However, the bikes can be restricted to set speeds allowing the children to test their driving skills but within safe parameters.

3. Olympics Themed Party

The 2012 Olympics captured the imagination of children and adults alike which is why an Olympic themed activity party is such a great idea. Single sport parties, such as football parties, are fun, but do not offer the variety available with an Olympic themed event. Introduce some healthy competition by assigning different teams their own country to represent, and tailor sports kit to represent this.

4. Baking Parties

A fun and tasty idea is to have a children’s baking party. With all-things cupcake in fashion right now, it is a perfect time to stage a baking afternoon which allows your child and their friends to learn baking skills at an early age and also have some fun along the way. Such parties can even see children make edible jewellery.

5. Treasure-Hunt Parties

Treasure hunts are exciting and most importantly, very flexible. They can be tailored to suit the weather, location, and budget. Treasure hunts can be set to a theme, for example Treasure Island or Pirates of the Caribbean. Add friendly competition to the day by splitting the party members up into teams.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

We've recently sold our home and moved into an apartment.  Our plan is to build a home...we're still trying to figure out if that is going to happen.  It's been a challenge trying to draw up plans that come in under a tight budget and the huge jump in interest rates recently didn't help!

So in the meantime we moved into a 2 bedroom apartment.  Moving from a 2400 square foot house with a 2 car garage to a 2 bedroom apartment with no garage has had its challenges.  We had to store all the craft supplies...which stinks!!  The kids and I are constantly needing something that we've stored, it's worse when they are in school.  However, with only 1 table (with carpet under it) there really isn't a great place to do crafting here, sigh.

The kitchen is another HUGE challenge.  It's small with not a lot of counter space.  I've been trying to change all our eating habits to SUPER HEALTHY and that means cooking with raw ingredients (not using premade stuff).  One of my biggest pet peeves here is the smoke detector....it's always going off!  You kind of need two people cooking, one to cook and one to wave a pillow under the smoke alarm!

smoke alarm

Of course this problem has really got me thinking about what to do when we build a house.  I REALLY don't want this problem on a permanent bases.  So I've done a little research.  There are a few different kinds of alarms, as you can see here:  http://www.sdfirealarms.co.uk/fire-protection/domestic-fire-protection/smoke-alarms-detectors.html 

My question is, how am I going to prevent the smoke alarm from going off every time I open the oven door but still be safe?

There a two kinds of fire alarms:  Ionization (or some spell it Ionisation) Smoke Alarms and Photoelectric Smoke Alarm (sometimes referred to as Optical Smoke alarms) and there is a combination of both of them. 

With the research I did, it seems that photoelectric smoke alarms are less likely to nuisance

alarms in the kitchen area than ionization smoke alarms, but they both still do produce false alarms.  It seems that it's more about location of the alarm, which might be our problem since our kitchen and living room are open to each other with the smoke alarm in the middle.  So I will make sure that I pay careful attention to the location of THAT alarm when and if we build our house!

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg
The summer holidays are fast approaching and the inevitable fear may be starting to set in about what on earth you are going to do to keep the kids entertained during their six whole weeks at home. There are only so many times you can visit the same park or rehash the same arts and crafts ideas before they will start to wear thin, and you need a few good trips up your sleeve to punctuate the summer stretch.

With the recession still casting a shadow on many family’s hopes of a holiday abroad, and with prices over the school holiday’s leaping up to meet the demand this simply isn’t an option for many. Looking closer to home for things to keep the smaller members of your troop entertained has led many to rediscover the delights of their very own capital city. London has loads to offer families and a stay can cost less than you might think by staying here: https://www.travelodge.co.uk/hotels/book/london-hotels.

This summer sees the opening of a brand new family show in the West End as Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is brought to life as a musical. This is a real children’s classic that can be enjoyed just as much by adults who will remember the book and story of Charlie Bucket from their own childhood. See the factory come alive as Willy Wonka invites the lucky golden ticket winners inside his magical land of chocolate and sweets, but in typical Dahl fashion, all is not what it seems.

Director Sam Mendes and musical directors Marc Shaiman and Hairspray’s Scott Wittman have adapted the much-loved children’s book into an all singing all dancing spectacle. Following the success of the 2005 Tim Burton movie, and the continued love audiences have for the original 1971 version of the film there are high hopes for the stage interpretation, and so far it has received great reviews. The show at the Theatre Royal on Drury Lane opened on the 25th June and will run 6 days a week with matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays for the foreseeable future.

It is currently restricted to the over 7s as there are some darker scenes in keeping with Dahl’s writing style. This age limit is to be reviewed in the future however, and may be removed as the musical becomes more established to allow younger guests at parents discretion. For slightly older kids, and those who are still kids at heart, the show promises to be a fantastic experience in the home of musical theatre, London’s West End. Why not re-read the book in the run up to the holidays ready to revisit the story at the Theatre Royal.

There is no need for boredom this summer with so much to do right on your doorstep. Take a trip to the capital and enjoy the iconic sights on an overnight theatre trip, for a summer adventure that your kids will talk about for years to come.

~Guest Post

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Is your child begging for a ‘real’ bike? Does he drop sly hints about his friends’ bicycles? Maybe she’s had a growth spurt and you have to hunt down a new kid’s bike in a rush. 

ASDA Direct lets you order from a great range of kids bikes without having to navigate traffic, find parking, or queue to pay.

 Whether your child is moving on from a tricycle or already using a model with handbrakes, you’ll find a bike with us. One that fits your safety standards and suits your kid’s personal style needs.

It’s All About the Wheel Size…

You probably bought your last bike with frame size in mind. With children’s bicycles, wheel size is the key measurement.

Choose a bike size that lets your kid straddle it without rising on tip toes. He should also be able to turn the handlebars with ease, and get on the saddle with only a slight tilt of the bike.

…and the Brakes

Of course you want your child to be confident on his bike. A big part of that is stopping control. That means the brakes on the bike you choose should suit your child.

Smaller kids usually have bikes with coaster brakes. These work by pedaling backwards. So the rider with little hands or less developed coordination doesn’t have to reach for handbrakes while balancing.

Older children can use handbrakes more easily. Or you could get a bike that has both types of brake, to ease your child into more advanced bike riding.

Check the Bike Materials

Kids’ bikes are often as heavy as adult bikes, as they tend to have steel frames rather than metal alloy ones.

However, bikes with alloy wheel rims are usually safer than those with steel-and-chrome rims. This is because they have better grip. A useful feature in Britain’s wet climate.

As for the branding and styling, you’ll need to follow your kid’s top tips.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Make Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer out of a craft foam sheets, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, and a red pom pom for the nose.  We also took this a step further and made 8 reindeer and a sleigh (you'll see that in another post :)

foam-sheet-reindeer

Directions for making a Foam Reindeer:

  1.  Start out by making a cylinder for the body.

  foam-sheet-reindeer-step1  2.  Then make 2 thinner but longer cylinders for the legs.  Put a pipe cleaner in the middle so you can bend the legs when it's finished.foam-sheet-reindeer-step2

  3.  Cut holes on both side of the cylinders to push the legs through.  You'll notice we put the holes at the back of the body so that is room left for the head.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step3

  4.  Next, form the head by using a low-temp glue gun to make it stay where you want.  Bend it up and glue, hold until the glue dries.  Now you have the neck formed.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step4

  5.  Then form the head the same way, glue in the fold and bend it down and hold until the glue dries.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step4b

  6.  Glue inside the cylinder and hold closed until it dries, to keep the head flat.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step5

  7.  Then shape the head by cutting diagonally on each side of the head.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step5b

  8.  Now you are ready to embellish.  Bend a pipe cleaner into antlers, add eyes and a pom pom nose.  Bend the legs to make it stand up.

foam-sheet-reindeer-step6

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Here is an easy craft to do with your kids or with a group of kids.  For this Foam Christmas tree, the instructions and are simple and you only need a few supplies. My six-year daughter had lots of fun making the Christmas presents for under the tree.  We had a one of those buckets of Shapes foam stickers - there are lots of different shapes:  squares, rectangles, triangles, circles, ovals...perfect for making gifts.  She used a low temperature glue gun to glue the boxes together but you could also just unpeel the sticker and use the glue from the sticker to put them together.  She used beads and sequins to embellish them.

christmas-tree-made-from-foam-sheets

Directions for the Christmas Tree:

  1. Draw and Cut out 3 identical Christmas Trees without the trunk on the bottom.  A wide bottom works best.
  2. Decorate one side of each of the three Christmas trees and let dry.
  3. With a low-tempurature glue gun, Glue the outside edges of just one side of Tree 1 to the identical outside edges of Tree 2.  Don't get any glue in the middle of the trees, you really just want to go around the outer edge of one side on the side that ISN'T decorated.
  4. Then glue just the outside edges of Tree 2 to the outside edges of Tree 3
  5. Then connect Tree 3 to the side of Tree 1 that isn't glued to Tree 2.  You are then left with a standing Christmas Tree.  You can add stars on top to each of the sides if you want.

If you are working with a group and have a limted amount of time to finish the tree, then decorate the tree after you have it assembled and standing up.  You can get small foam stickers for decorating and you won't have to have any drying time.

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Once you get used to making bodies out of the Craft Foam Sheets, the sky is the limit on what you can do with it.  Using the same concept as our Foam Nativity, we made cute little angel ornaments to hang on the Christmas tree.

angels-made-from-craft-foam-sheets

We made these angels wider than our nativity people and for the pink angel, we made smaller cones for the arms.  We also used a hole punch around the edges to add a little something extra.  You can use wood balls for the heads, doilies for the wings, and pipe cleaners for the arms.

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Here is a cute craft to make for Christmas.  This is Santa and Mrs Claus made out of those Craft Foam Sheets you can buy at any craft store.  We used the same concept as our foam nativity, but just used bigger foam sheets and made the body bigger.

santa-and-mrs-claus-foam-sheets

We used small foam balls for the heads and had tons of fun embellishing Santa and Mrs Claus.  For Santa's hair we used more of the foam sheets and for Mrs Claus's hair we used cotton balls.

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

paper-plate-crown1

The pomp and ceremony of the Diamond Jubilee celebrations should have provided plenty of inspiration for young kids to make some wonderfully colourful arts and crafts. So why not provide them with the raw materials to make a homemade crown? As all you need to make this crown are a paper plate, some scissors and some adhesive flower decorations, it really is a task that a prince or a pauper could do!
If you organised a Diamond Jubilee street party then you might well have some paper plates left over. You will need one of these (a nine-inch one) to begin making your crown.
First fold the paper plate in half. The one I used has a pink upside (the side you put the food on) and is white underneath.

paper-plate-crown2

Next, make an incision in the middle of the plate.


paper-plate-crown3 

Then make further ‘triangular cuts’ along the folded part of the paper plate. Basically, the key is to cut the paper plate like a pie but don’t cut the segment so that it comes away from the pie/paper plate!


paper-plate-crown4 

It’s important to ensure that the incisions are the same length – this will make sure that your crown looks neat when it is finished. As you can see from the picture above my incisions are of a slightly different length – try and make sure you do a neater job than I did!


The next stage involves cutting a line down the folded edge of your plate (the edge in the picture above which is nearest to you). It is important to cut down the crease of the folded line on both sides.


paper-plate-crown5 

Don’t fold up your points just yet – it’s time to decorate the crown. Open up your plate so that the pink side is showing. Then peel off the back of the sticky adhesive flower decorations and attach them to the points of your crown.
Once decorated, it’s time to fold back the points. Don’t fold them up too far – your head will do this naturally once it wears the crown.


paper-plate-crown 

Remember that if your crown turns out higgledy-piggledy as the one featured in these photographs then you can always learn from your mistakes and make another one. Practice really does make perfect!


Guest Post By:  James Christie writes for Yellow Moon. Check out Yellow Moon’s fabulous range of party supplies for kids.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Sometimes kids need a little encouragement to take up reading. Luckily, art and craft company Baker Ross has lots of reading encouragement stickers to reward children who show an interest in the wonderful world of literature.

Designing and making a scratch art bookmark is another incentive for kids to become bookworms. Once budding designers see the finished bookmark they will be keen to make use of it to keep their place and read lots of fun books.

Combining books with art is always a great idea – just look at the number of Roald Dahl books which have been brought to life by Quentin Blake’s fabulous illustrations.

SCRATCH ART 1

A scratch art bookmark kit contains all kids need to make a bookmark which will be the toast of the classroom. The craft materials inside are:

  • A blank black bookmark
  • Ribbon
  • A double-ended wooden scratch art tool

Have some scissors (not included in the kit) at hand too before you begin.

SCRATCH ART 2

Begin your task by picking up the plain black bookmark – it looks quite unpromising doesn’t it but should be viewed as a blank canvas for your imagination.

SCRATCH ART 3

The thinner end of the scratch art tool is the key to sketching in the initial details. In the example used in this article, Kate has decided to depict a beautiful sunset scene of a ship sailing on the sea.

SCRATCH ART 4

She starts by drawing some wavy lines representing the sea – a choppy ocean looks so much more artistic than still waters!

Next it is time for an outline of a boat – you can include a triangular sail or circular cabin holes if you like. Or maybe you’d like to draw a ferry complete with a rectangular funnel.

By now the ship should look like its sailing in a pitch-black ocean; but we want it to bob above the waves in a rather happier setting.

SCRATCH ART 5

So it’s time to turn the scratch-art tool around and use its thicker end to apply the broad brush strokes which will create the colourful sky under which the ship sails. Scratching off the background will reveal the beautiful rainbow colours which lurk beneath the black exterior of the blank bookmark.

Take extra care while you are scratching near the boat and the surface of the waves – if you go over the boat’s edges you will spoil the outline and might have to scratch the project.

Black material will flake off while you scratch away but don’t worry – the end result will be worth it.

SCRATCH ART 6

Once your masterpiece is completed you can loop the ribbon through the hole at the top and tie it in a knot.

If, like me, you are a little better at calligraphy than you are at drawing then you can always scratch ornate and swirly words on to your bookmark.

Kate seems to have had the same idea with the bookmark pictured below.

SCRATCH ART 7

Kate has helpfully posted a video tutorial detailing how she made her ‘ship at sunset’ bookmark on Baker Ross’s YouTube channel.

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!
Happy scratching!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Have fun making these super cute rosettes out of Party Streamers. Homespun with Heart has a great tutorial on how to make these roses. You can use a Styrofoam ball to make a Rosette Ball or make them into a wreath. Check out another of our wreath tutorials to see how we used foam board to glue rosettes onto to make a square wreath.

Crepe-Paper-Rosettes-Wreath-or-Balls

See the tutorial

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Looking for a way to make cute Valentines for your kids classmates?  Try these suckers from make-happy.blogspot.com  These are suckers turned into flowers.  Make sure you make the leaf big enough so that you can write the "To" and "From" on them so that your kids can pass them out at school.

valentine-flower-sucker

Check out her instructions here.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

We're flexible as far as advertising goes, so please contact me and we'll see what we can do.

GIVEAWAYS are welcome! The product must be a minimum $30 value. Sponsor is solely responsible for a timely delivery to the winner. There is currently no charge for a giveaway.

REVIEWS: Send me your product and I will give my readers an honest opinion. I encourage a giveaway along with the review to help bring more attention to your site.

Please contact us

I look forward to working with you! 

Brenda

DISCLOSURE POLICY:

We use advertising on this site because running a website costs money and it takes a lot of time.

I RECEIVED ONE OR MORE OF THE PRODUCTS OR SERVICES MENTIONED IN SOME OF MY POSTS FOR FREE IN THE HOPE THAT I WOULD MENTION IT ON MY BLOG. REGARDLESS, I ONLY RECOMMEND PRODUCTS OR SERVICES I USE PERSONALLY AND BELIEVE MY READERS WILL ENJOY. I AM DISCLOSING THIS IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION’S 16 CFR, PART 255: “GUIDES CONCERNING THE USE OF ENDORSEMENTS AND TESTIMONIALS IN ADVERTISING.”

Privacy Policy:

We use third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our website.  These companies may use information (NOT including your name, address email address or telephone number) about your visits to this and other Web sites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you.  

We allow third-party companies to serve ads and/or collect certain anonymous information when you visit our web site.  These companies may use NON-PERSONALLY identifiable information (e.g., click stream information, browser type, time and date, subject of advertisements clicked or scrolled over) during your visits to this and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services likely to be of greater interest to you.  These companies typically use a cookie or third party web beacon to collect this information.  

Thanks for your suport in keeping Piggy Giggles Running

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Here is a Choose the Right Craft that you can use for Primary or at home to remind your kids about making right decisions - CTR Necklaces and Badges.   If you are doing this as a Primary activity you can prepare more or less ahead of time depending on how much time you have for the activity.  I've added ahead-of-time-prep ideas to keep the craft short, but if you have more time then you don't have to do all of the suggested preparation ahead of time. 


If you'd like to receive more of our Crafts and Activities for Teaching the Gospel in Primary and at Home, subscribe to our newsletter.

After you subscribe please check your email to confirm your subscription. If you don't receive the email, please check your junk folder.


ctr-necklace

ctr-badge

Supplies Needed to make CTR Necklaces or Badges:

ctr-letters

  • Print the CTR font file on white or colored paper as many times as you need
  • Regular Foam Sheets for the necklaces and the Foam Sheets with the Sticker backing for the Badges (you could use Card Stock Paper if you need to keep costs down) (You can fun the Foam Sheets near the buckets of Foam Stickers in a craft store or craft section of a store)
  • Small Stickers
  • Ribbon or Yarn (Yarn is less expensive)
  • Scissors (Optional, you can do all the cutting ahead of time using a paper cutter, but the kids might like to trim the letters down even more and cut the Sticker Backed Foam Sheets to make borders on their necklace or badge.  You don't need to have one pair per child.)
  • Small Hole Puncher (You will only need one if you punch all the holes for the necklaces ahead of time)
  • Glue (preferably the liquid glue that dries clear because glue sticks don't hold as well)

Directions to make CTR Necklaces or Badges:

Ahead-of-Time Prep:
  • Cut the letters out using a paper cutter and keep the C's, T's and R's in separate bags so the kids can pick out which ones they want
  • Cut the Regular Foam Sheets (using a paper cutter) to at least a 3 inch by 2 inch rectangle for the necklaces.  The bigger you make the rectangle, the more room they will have to decorate.
      • Punch the holes in the foam for the ribbon or yarn (you can even go ahead and tie the ribbon or yarn on so that all the kids have to do is decorate the necklace)
  • Cut the Sticker-Backed Foam Sheets to at least 4 inches by 2 1/2 inches for the badges.
  • If you want to provide borders for the necklaces and badges, you can use a paper cutter and cut the Sticker-Backed Foam Sheets into thin strips and then the kids can cut them to the lengths they need

Directions for the kids assembling the Craft:

  • Let the kids choose which C, T and R they want
  • Glue the C, T and R on the Foam Rectangles (we used a glue stick, but kids always have a hard time getting enough glue on to firmly attach the letters, so the liquid glue would be better, but requires more drying time)

ctr-necklace1

  • Decorate with sticker-backed foam borders (that you cut) and stickers

ctr-badge1

  • Tie the Ribbon on the Necklaces if you haven't already done so

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!
Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Here is an easy activity to use in Primary to introduce the 2012 Primary Theme, Choose the Right.  Print the PDF file for each child and have them color the squares that show people making good decisions.  MAKE SURE YOU CHOOSE PRINT PREVIEW BEFORE PRINTING AND PRINT IN LANDSCAPE MODE.  When they are done the page will display CTR, reminding them to Choose the Right.


If you'd like to receive more of our Crafts and Activities for Teaching the Gospel in Primary and at Home, subscribe to our newsletter.

After you subscribe please check your email to confirm your subscription. If you don't receive the email, please check your junk folder.


Choose the Right Primary Activity:

CTR-choose-the-right-activity

Choose the Right Activity PDF File

Here is the Answer:

CTR-choose-the-right-activity-answer

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

This is a very easy Christmas Ornament for kids to make - miniature fabric wreaths.  This a great craft for for kids that are learning to tie.  You make this much like our other fabric wreaths only make it in miniature size.  There are two different versions of this wreath, one you tie a bunch strips of fabric on and the other you wrap one long strip of fabric around the wire, this version is good for kids that don't know how to tie.

christmas-tree-fabric-wreath-ornament

We used some thick wire that we found at the home improvement store.  We cut off a section to make the size wreath we wanted and taped the ends together with duct tape

Then tear your fabric into the size strips you want and tie them one by one.

christmas-tree-fabric-wreath-ornament1christmas-tree-fabric-wreath-ornament2

We also used another color fabric to tie a bow on at the top.

Here the other version of the Fabric Christmas Wreath:

wrapped-christmas-tree-fabric-wreath-ornament

To make this we started by gluing the end of a long strip of fabric to the wire ring and then wrapping the fabric around the ring. 

christmas-tree-fabric-wreath-ornament3

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

 

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

This is an easy and cute Thanksgiving craft for kids to make to decorate the Thanksgiving table.  This will make a timeless treasure that you can use year after year.  This felt turkey craft is even a great gift to make for Grandma and Grandpa.  You're child will not only have fun making it but they will have fun year after year measuring their hand with it to see how much they have grown!

felt-hand-turkery

Supplies Needed for a Thanksgiving Felt Turkery Craft:

  • Different colored felt
  • Scissors
  • White Craft or Elmer's Glue
  • Pen
  • Glitter, Jewels, etc (Optional)

Directions to make a Felt Turkey Craft:

  • Place two pieces of felt (that is a little larger than your hand) together and Trace your hand  with your fingers spread out on the felt the pen
  • Cut out the felt hands
  • Glue around the edge of one of the hands, leaving the middle and bottom of the hand unglued
  • Place the other hand on top of the glued side of the hand, lining up the fingers and Let dry
  • Cut out feathers and eyes from the other colors of felt and decorate with glitter, jewels, etc  or leave blank
  • Glue feathers, eyes, etc to both sides of the turkey hand, using the thumb as the head of the turkey
  • Let everything dry completely, then you can stuff the turkey with anything to make it stand.  (like a plastic bag, newspaper...)

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!
Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

picture credit: All You Magazine


Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

If you've posted any fun kid projects then make sure to share them with us in our Show and Tell.  We are only looking for Crafts and Recipes that kids would like.

Read MoreAfter you link, we would love for you to grab our button for your blog!!

If you don't have a blog that you post your crafts and recipes on, then you can show off your creations on Pig's Wall.  All you have to do is register and upload your pictures!!

Read More

Also make sure to follow us by entering your email address under "Follow Us" in the top right hand corner so that you will get all our newest crafts in your email. 

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Too many plastic grocery bags?  You can make this fun upcycled/recycled plastic bag wreath using bags from the grocery store.  Using an iron to fuse layers of different colored grocery bags together make a really cool leopard effect.  Once you fuse the bags together you can make a number of neat recycled crafts.  This craft makes rosettes out of the bags that can be used to make a really cool looking wreath.

plastic-grocery-bag-flower-wreath

Here's a Rosette up close:

flowerA

Supplies Needed to make a Recycled Plastic Bag Flower Wreath:

  • Plastic Grocery Bags
  • Wax Paper
  • Iron
  • Needle and Thread
  • Scissors
  • Low-temp glue gun or glue dots
  • Beads or Gems for the center
  • Styrofoam wreath form or Foam Board

Directions to make a Recycled Plastic Bag Flower Wreath:

  • First cut off the handles and bottom of the bags to remove all seams, then cut your bag open so you have one big sheet (you can choose if you want to cut off the words on the bag or not)
  • Layer two pieces of the plastic together and lay on top of a piece of wax paper.  Place another piece of wax paper on top to protect your iron

melting- plastic-shopping-bag-1

  • Set your iron on a little above medium setting
  • Iron on top of the wax paper leaving the iron in one place for just a couple of seconds.  If you leave it too long you will seal the wax paper to your plastic, if the plastic doesn't melt after a couple of seconds turn your iron up a little.
  • When the plastic has cooled, peel the top layer of wax paper off and add another piece of plastic.  Replace the wax paper and iron again.  Do this until you have 4 layers of plastic melted together

melting- plastic-shopping-bag-2

  • Next cut your plastic into strips, the wider the strips the bigger the flowers you can make
  • Take your needle and thread and run it in and out along one edge of your strip of plastic, this will let you gather the plastic.  Once you get to the end you can pull on the thread and gather your plastic together

plastic-grocery-bag-flower-1plastic-grocery-bag-flower-2

  • As you gather the plastic, form it into a circle until you get a tight rosette.  Use the needle and thread to hold it all together by running the needle in and out of the center a few times until it holds together.  Tie the thread off in the back.

plastic-grocery-bag-flower-3plastic-grocery-bag-flower-4

  • Glue your bead, gem or rhinestone to the middle of your rosette

plastic-grocery-bag-flower-5

  • Make enough of these rosettes to cover your wreath
  • Next take your styrofoam wreath form or using a craft knife (adults only) cut the wreath shape you want out of Foam Board, like we did

plastic-grocery-bag-flower-wreath-1

  • Glue your rosettes to the wreath form and glue a ribbon on the back for hanging

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles


Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

Well I guess I have to admit to myself that summer is over...school starts on Thursday.  We got back yesterday from our beach trip to a messy house and lots of shopping that needs to be done to get ready for school.  I can't believe how fast it went.  We'll have a 1st grader and preschooler this year.  I'm glad they both are excited to start.

I did get a craft posted that we did a few weeks ago.  This is a really cool crafts that you could use in many different ways.  They are Yarn Balls made from Paper Mache Glue.  You can use them in a number of ways to decorate for a Party or Holiday.

Check out our Paper Mache Yarn Ball Craft

Oh, do you like my chandelier shade that I made??  I used a piece of plexi-glass that I cut into a circle (with a hole in the middle for the wires).  Then I sewed the fabric shade, making a channel in the bottom to run wire through so it would hold its round shape at the bottom.  Then I hot glued the top of the shade to the round piece of plexi-glass.

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

  This Paper Mache Craft has endless possibilities.  We used our Paper Mache Recipe and instead of using paper to wrap around our balloons we used yarn.  You end up with a really cool hollow ball of yarn.  You could use these balls of yarn to decorate for a party.  We tied ours to a string to dress up our fireplace mantel, but you could also tie these balls to the individual lights on a string of Christmas Tree Lights and make a cool Party Lanterns.   We also tied ours to a chandelier to dress it up (see picture below).  My 6 year old had a little trouble holding the slippery yarn on the balloon as she wrapped, so this craft would be good for kids a little older who'd be able to work it better.

paper-mache-balls

Paper Mache Glue Recipe:

  • Mix 1 cup of water with 1 cup flour until smooth
  • Mix this mixture into 4 cups of boiling water
  • Add a little cinnamon if you want
  • Let cool and it's ready to use

Supplies Needed to make a Paper Mache Balls:

  • Balloons, in any shape and size.  We used small round balloons
  • Yarn, preferably thinner yarn because it dries faster
  • Paper Mache Recipe

Directions to make a Paper Mache Balls:

  • Make your Paper Mache Glue Recipe and blow up your balloons (try to make them all the same size)
  • Cut your Yarn into long, but manageable lengths (that won't tangle when you dip it into the Paper Mache Glue.
  • Dip one of your lengths of Yarn into the Paper Mache Glue and wipe of excess glue from the yarn as you take it out

paper-mache-recipe

  • Next, wrap the Yarn around your Balloon, make sure to wrap enough yarn around your balloon so that it's strong when it dries.

paper-mache-ball

  • Let the balls dry overnight (DON'T put outside in the hot sun to dry like we did.  Your balloons will shrink before your yarn dries.  We had to take out the shrunken balloons and blow up another one inside the yarn ball to save it).  
  • After the Yarn is completely dry, pop the balloon inside and pull out through a hole.
  • Depending on how you use your Yarn Balls, you might want to spray with a clear varnish to make them a little water resistant.
  • Tie to a string of ribbon or tie on your string of Christmas Tree Lights.  You can also hang them from a chandelier like we did:

paper-mache-ball-chandelier

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

We were inspiried by Scattered Thoughts of a Crafty Mom, to make these Paper Mache Piggy Banks (you can click on the link to see hers).  The kids had lots of fun making this craft and even more fun putting in their money and taking it out. 

See how we made these Piggy Banks

Google bookmarkDel.icio.usTwitterFacebookDigg

We had lots of fun making this Paper Mache Piggy Bank.  We used a flour and water Paper Mache Recipe, which is the cheapest way to make Paper Mache.  We made 2 Piggy Banks and used the entire recipe.  We didn't have any newspaper so we used Brown Paper Grocery Bags which worked fine, it just took a little longer to dry.  I was actually a little surprised at how NOT messy this craft project was.  I got everything together and left my 4 year old and 6 year old to it while I got the baby to sleep.  I thought I'd come back to a mess, but cleanup was super easy because I had laid down some plastic on the table.  My 6 year old did a great job covering hers.  I had to redo most of my 4 year old's after he was done, but he had a lot of fun doing it his way first and isn't that what its all about?  We did have a mishap with leaving our piggy banks out to dry in the rain!!  We found that the longer that it took to dry the worse it smelled.  You can add cinnamon or something to your Paper Mache Recipe if you want it to smell better!

paper-mache-pig

Paper Mache Recipe:

  • Mix 1 cup of water with 1 cup flour until smooth
  • Mix this mixture into 4 cups of boiling water
  • Add a little cinnamon if you want
  • Let cool and it's ready to use

Supplies Needed to make a Paper Mache Pig for Kids:

  • Plastic Container with a twist-on lid (juice container, protein powder container, etc)
  • Empty Egg Carton
  • Newspaper, Brown Paper Grocery Bags, or any other kind of Paper that you'd recycle
  • Low-temp Glue Gun
  • Paint and Brushes
  • Modge Podge or Clear Gloss Paint for Sealing
  • Paper Mache Recipe
  • Pipe Cleaner (we used the extra fuzzy kind)

Directions to make a Paper Mache Pig for Kids:

  • Make your Paper Mache Recipe and tear your newspaper into strips
  • Cut the egg carton into individual cups (you'll need 7 cups)
  • With the lid ON the Plastic Container, glue the egg carton cups on the Container for the feet, ears, and nose (glue the nose on the lid)

paper-mache-pig2

  • Cut a slit (to put the money) in the top of your container with one side your your scissors (adults should do this part)
  • Next, take the lid off and put some tape around the threads so that you won't get paper mache where the lid needs to screw on. (You want to make sure you glue the nose on when you have the lid on the container so that it ends up in the right place)

paper-mache-pig1

  • Now you're ready to start applying the paper strips
  • Dip each strip into the paper mache mixture and then wipe off the excess with your fingers.  Wrap the strip around your pig.  Keep doing this until everything is covered, including the lid.

paper-mache-pig3

  • Let your pig dry overnight and then paint.

paper-mache-pig4

  • After the paint dries, paint on the Modge Podge or Clear Vanish to seal it.
  • Feel with your fingers where the slit you cut for the money is and cut through the paper to access it.
  • Cut the pipe cleaner in half and glue on the back for the tail.  Use your finger to make it curly.

paper-mache-pig5

Did you try this craft?  Let us know how it went!

Happy Crafting!!  Piggy Giggles

«StartPrev1234567NextEnd»
Page 1 of 7

Follow Us

Don't miss out on our newest Crafts!!
(We don't spam/sell email addresses!)
Enter your Email below:

Subscribe in a reader Facebok page Follow me

Do you 'Like' Piggy Giggles?

Visit our Sister Site

As much fun as crafting with kids is, I really love doing "craft" projects for our home.  If you are a DIYer, then check out my new DIY Home Decor Blogs website to find lots of great blogs about DIY and home decor.  You'll also soon see before and after pictures of my house and all the fun projects I've done.

DIY-HOME-Decor-Blogs-logo-small

DIY HOME DECOR BLOGS