Homemade recycled cardboard castle craft project

Here's a craft project that can be used for home, homeschool, Sunday School, CCD, classroom and youth theater: a cardboard castle.

To start, make cardboard castle walls. Cut open two large, recycled cardboard refrigerator boxes. Tape boxes together to make an octagon castle "keep." Cut windows and castle battlements. Castle walls had a series of crenelations and merlons (squared edge thingys) along the top.

Decorate cardboard castle. Draw in bricks and family crest. Make medieval drawbridge by cutting a flap in the side of cardboard castle. Attach yarn to both sides of to lower and raise drawbridge. Cut holes in the top to tie drawbridge closed. Place blue and green blankets around the outside for the castle moat. Fill with stuffed animal dragons, fish, alligators and other aquatic creatures.

Make secret entrances. Line chairs up to make a crawl-through tunnel entrance into castle. Drape sheets, blankets and bed linens over tunnel. Establish cardboard castle dungeon. Make a parapet (walkway) by placing several chairs or a bench along the inside edge of the castle. Soldiers keep lookout here and send prisoners to sit under the chairs in the dungeon sit under bench. Fashion a turret. Put a collapsible net laundry hamper upside down on a chair inside the castle. Children crawl into hamper and onto chair to look out of the turret. Help kids make hobby horses from old brooms to play knight.

Recycled Holiday Crafts For Kids: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Chanukah

Parents, do the holidays find you up to your eyebrows in kids and work? Why not put those vacationing youngsters to work making crafts, greeting cards and decorations for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Chanukah, or whatever winter holidays you celebrate? These cheap, green homemade crafts save money using recycled materials while keeping preschool kids productively busy and helping prep for your celebration.  Recycled Holiday Crafts For Kids: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Chanukah

Spooky-licious scary food recipes: ghoulishly gruesome Halloween party foods

Hosting a Halloween party? Want to scare up ghoulishly gruesome (but spooky-licious) snacks your little hob-goblins? These spooky snack recipes guaranteed will gross out the bravest guest. Set up DIY make-your-own snacks and get double duty of party foods and crafts. Or do triple duty with a game thrown in. Organize them by Halloween creature. Play a blindfold touch and feel game. Have guests guess what foods are. Set out labels so guests know what creepy confections they ate.


--flesh: marshmallows

--guts: marshmallow fluff or vanilla frosting

--ghost guts cookies: pinwheel cookies

--blood: milk

--brains dipped in ghost blood: raw cauliflower dipped in ranch dressing


--teeth: red apple wedges dipped in Hershey's Strawberry Syrup (blood)

--bloody fingers : hot dogs with ketchup

Haunted Jack-o-Lantern

--pumpkin blood: orange juice


--teeth: black and orange candy corn

--wings: grape fruit leather or prunes


--brains: popcorn (being dried out, mummy brains are shrively and crumbled.

--people mummies brains: make popcorn balls with marshmallows and red M&Ms.

--cat mummy brains: popcorn and red M&Ms (Egyptians loved their cats and mummified them).

--zombie Barbie brains: whole walnuts

--wrappings: cotton candy

--guts: assorted dried fruit

--hearts and ears: pretzels


--fingers: mozzarella cheese sticks or pretzel rods

--faces: yogurt-covered pretzels


--brains: broccoli

--blood: milk and green food coloring, limeade

--guts: pistachio pudding or guacamole (serve with tortilla chips called dragon scales)

--eyes: green grapes or sliced kiwi

--Witches' brew: mulled spiced apple cider. Have children watch as you describe and prepare. Heat monster blood (apple cide) with eye of newt (whole cloves), dragon claws (cinnamon bark), Slenderman eyes (lemon slices), toad eyes (raisins), dash of skeleton paste (butter) and ground scorpion (nutmeg).

--Witch blood slushies: frozen honey dew melon or kiwi, blended with Greek yogurt and lemonade.


--Frankenstein --Nuts and Bolts: Chex Mix or Cheerios Trail Mix

--zombie sandwiches (as in for, not made of): Sliced lunchmeat (brain cross-section) sandwiches with guts and blood (mustard and ketchup).

--eye slices: sliced kiwi or cucumber

--werewolf gut and blood sandwiches: PBJ sandwiches

--toasted spider legs: chow mien noodles
For tons more Halloween activities visit Halloween Harvest & October and for recipes come to Great Food 4u. Need educational printables try Free Printable Lesson Plans and for holiday cards try Free Printable Cards 4U

Patriotic drinks recipes: bomb pops, RWB cocktails, beer and wine: American-themed adult beverages

Who says food can't be art? Certainly not Pinterest! And Labor Day is just the time to get creative with the patriotic drinks recipes. "Crafts" some red white and blue cocktails and American themed shots and recipes. Use these festive American holiday-themed alcoholic beverages for 4th of July, Flag Day and Memorial Day too. 

RWB Bomb Pop: Slush (partially freeze) separately: Dekuyper's Raspberry Pucker, cherry liqueur or Bacardi Razz, blue Curacao and Smirnoff ice (or lemonade, vodka or gin). Add slush in layers with red on bottom, clear in middle and blue on top.

Red, White and Brew: Are your party-goers a beer crowd? Then why not spike those beers with a shot of red or blue food coloring for a fun Fourth of July look? Hey, bars dye beer green for St. Patrick's Day--why not blue beer or red beer for America's birthday? Amber beers are already reddish in color. Hopheads will love Founders Red's Rye IPA. Lagunitas Imperial Red is a maltier beer. Or Redd's Apple Ale is getting quite a following.

Red Wine and Blue: Serve your wine loving guests an assortment of wines. Select a rich, dry red like Malbec or Shiraz and a sweet red Lambrusco. Moscato or Reisling are nice sweet whites wines and chardonnay is a delicious dry white. For blue white, add a little grape juice to a sweet white. Or bust out good old Boone's Farm Blue Hawaiian just for fun!

Red Hot White Lightning Blues: Put a kick in your patriotic punch bowl. Blend cranberry juice, grapefruit soda, Dekuyper's Raspberry Pucker, vodka (one shot of liqueur and alcohol to each 8 ounce serving of juice). Freeze blue gelatin or clear soda in star-shaped ice cube trays.

Rum White and Beach Cooler: This is a 4th of July spin on a traditional New Orleans Hurricane recipe. Blend blue Hi-C fruit punch, limeade, Dekuyper's Blue Curacao and Malibu coconut rum. Garnish with strawberry and apple slices cut in star shapes.

Star-Spangled Sangria: In a pitcher, blend one bottle dry red wine (Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon) one 2 liters grapefruit soda, one 12-ounce can lemonade and a fifth of Dekuyper's Peach Schnapps. Freeze Dekuyer's Blue Curacao in star-shaped ice cubes. Slice oranges, lemons and limes and cut in star shapes with cookie cutter.

Ruby White and Blue Solitaire shot (slush or regular): My then-boyfriend was a bartender. He gave me a ruby solitaire as a promise ring. This drink is named for that ring. 100% Cranberry Juice cocktail (Ocean Spray is a good brand.) DeKuyper Peachtree Schnapps.
lemon twist, strawberry and blueberry bowtie for garnish. Freeze the cranberry juice until it slushes. Place in a covered ice bucket or cooler. Mix one shot of Schnapps with four oz. of cranberry juice.

American Woman (aka Bahama Mama, a drink from my conga line days). In a shaker, blend, shots of Malibu Coconut Rum, Suntory Midori (melon liquor) and 4-6 ounces Dole Orange-Peach-Mango or Dole Pine-Orange-Banana). Garnish with pale green honeydew melon chunk, strawberry, blueberry for RWB bowtie.

Blue Motorcycle: My now-husband used to ride a Union Jack blue 1970 Triumph Daytona; this drink is a tribute to that bike.Mix one ounce each of vodka, rum and Blue Curacao liquor. Add four ounces Vernor's (the original American soda) or Squirt grapefruit soda.

Star-Spangled Brain: This novelty was an early shot. It looks like a squirrels' brain (hence the name) but tastes delicious. Fill a Collins glass half full of Dekuyper Strawberry or Pucker Raspberry Schnapps. Slowly dribble in one-two ounces of Bailey's Irish Cream to make "brain."

Stripy Stars Slammer: Another early shot, you slam the glass on the table and drink in one gulp. Slamming releases CO2 and makes froth. It isn't necessary to literally slam the glass. Just pick it up with one hand, cover it with the other hand and set down firmly on the table. 1 oz tequila, 1 ounce pink champagne, 4 ounces Vernor's.

Ein Prosit! L'Chaim! Sainte! Salud! Nastrovya! Skol! Opah and all that. But if you drink this Memorial Day, don't drive.

Free printable Valentines Day crafts, valentine activities for kids

At each holiday, there are a few good websites to check for free printable holiday greeting cards, crafts, party decorations and coloring pages. Here are the best free printable Valentines Day crafts, greeting cards, valentines for classroom exchanges and children's Valentine's Day activities.
Start at The Toymaker for whimsical, Victorian-inspired Valentine's Day crafts. This link takes you to the Holidays - Valentine's Day page, but be sure to check out all the free printable toys, stories, games, crafts, cut and paste, holiday activities and novelties for children. The Toymaker, whose name is Marilyn makes all these free printables herself. For Valentine's Day crafts, there are free printable valentines greeting cards, treat boxes, a cute elephant valentine holder, valentine ornaments, a Celtic Valentine's Day treat box, a pixie box, door hangers, party decorations and more. These free printable crafts are perfect for preschool, homeschool, classroom and nursing home craft activities. Remember senior friends at Valentines Day when you exchange greeting cards.
Free printable brings you the best of web in freebies to print. This links takes you to the free printable valentines, just perfect for children's Valentine's Day exchanges. There are cute valentines with animals, hearts, frogs, flowers, dinosaurs and more. There are Valentine games, puzzles, decorations and other crafts, too. Be sure to scroll around for the multitude of other free printables.
Free Kids Crafts is another great free printable crafts clearinghouse. Sign up for the newsletter to see what great new activities are available. The link takes you to the first page of free printable valentines and Valentine's Day crafts. This page has 12 different styles of valentine crafts. Note that this is just the first page--there are four more pages of free printable valentines greeting cards and crafts alone (not to mention all the stuff to print for other holidays. Print valentines with animals, cartoons, hearts, candy, toys and more. You can make free printable Valentine's Day bookmarks, treat holders, paper glasses, party decorations, games, activities and more.

Teachers and homeschool parents, bookmark these sites for free printable party crafts, but also for that student who may have forgotten (or couldn't afford) to buy valentines to share with the class. Don't let her miss out on the valentine exchange fun--print off some valentines for her to fill out and distribute. I worked in high school special needs classroom. On Valentine's Day, many students still wanted to participate in valentine exchanges, but were deemed "too old." They were delighted when I printed valentines for them to make when their classwork was done.

Free Thanksgiving holiday crafts, games, greeting cards, coloring pages, printables

Do you love the Thanksgiving holiday? For some folks, it's the favorite of the holiday season. If you're a penny pincher who doesn't spend money on decorations and party supplies, yet likes to decorate, here are free printable Thanksgiving Day and seasonal decorations, Crafts, coloring pages and party games. Kids will love making greeting cards from holiday printables. Get Halloween and Christmas printables too. Pumpkin carving patterns, snowflake templates and more.    Free Thanksgiving holiday crafts, games, greeting cards, coloring pages, printables

Mothers Day gift crafts for kids: Homemade photo frames, picture frame crafts | Examiner.com

Need inexpensive Mothers Day gift crafts for kids to make? Here are tutorials for homemade photo frames and gift crafts that teach measurement, geometry and other math skills. These Mothers Day gift crafts for kids are easy, economical, and eco-friendly. You will repurpose and reuse a lot of recycled trash in homemade photo frames and spend next to nothing!   Mothers Day gift crafts for kids: Homemade photo frames, picture frame crafts | Examiner.com

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