Free printable Christmas craft project patterns, printable holidays stencils and templates

As we head into the final Christmas countdown, many people are making holiday crafts and decorating their homes. Saving money and using recycled materials are always hot topics around the holidays. In that spirit, the Associated Press shared a tutorial on repurposing toys as Christmas tree ornaments, on Dec. 16. Here are free printable  Christmas craft project patterns, printable holidays stencils and templates

Free printable Veterans Day coloring pages, American history military, patriotic - Grand Rapids Holidays |

Veterans Day is celebrated November 11. It's also called Armistice Day and Remembrance Day. We honor veterans, military and those who've died. We remember World War One, which truce was called on November 11, 1918. Here are free printable Veterans Day coloring pages. Images include American military, patriotic themes and WWI history.Free printable Veterans Day coloring pages, American history military, patriotic - Grand Rapids Holidays |


Despicable Me Minion Halloween costumes recycled, cheap and no-sew

"Despicable Me" is one of the hottest kids' movies of all time. What makes it so crazy-popular aren't main characters, but the supporting cast--aka those cute little vitamin-B shaped Minions. Minions continue to place in the Top 10 Halloween costumes for 2014. But you don't have to buy a minion costume. Here are easy DIY Despicable Me minion Halloween costume patterns and ideas. They're cheap too, if you use recycled materials, scraps and secondhand clothing.Make Despicable Me Minion Halloween costumes cheap and no-sew - Grand Rapids Holidays |


Free Printable SVG Patterns for Scrapbooking and Cricut Machines

Do you like scrapbooking, making homemade greeting cards or 3D crafts? Whether you use a paper die cutting machine like Cricut or make patterns free hand, you'll want these free printable SVG (scalable vector graphics) patterns. Click here to be taken to links for  Free Printable SVG Patterns for Scrapbooking and Cricut Machines

Free Printable Halloween Pumpkin Carving Patterns for Trick-or-Treat

Do you love fall? I do! I just made a huge batch of Michigan applesauce--yummy!

And what would autumn be without carving the traditional Halloween pumpkin? It's a rite of trick-or-treat. And it's lots of fun! Looking for creative pumpkin carving stencils for your jack-o-lantern? Here are free printable pumpkin stencils. Free Printable Halloween Pumpkin Carving Stencils, Trick-or-Treat Jack-o-Lantern Patterns

Free Printable Astrology Signs of the Zodiac Tattoo Patterns and Coloring Pages - Bubblews

The signs of the zodiac distinguish which star pattern or constellation a person is born under. The 12 symbols, or signs of the zodiac roughly follow the 12 months of the Gregorian or western calendar. The study of stars and their effect upon human behavior is called astrology. Predicting the future based upon stars and star symbols is called reading a horoscope. The names for the constellations and signs of the zodiac come from the Latin and the symbols are indicated in Greek. Here are  Free Printable Astrology Signs of the Zodiac Tattoo Patterns and Coloring Pages

Free Printable Origami and Kirigami Patterns Templates and Stencils

Origami is Japanese folded paper art and kirigami is the art of cutting paper to create stand up, pop up or 3D figures. Here are free printable origami and kirigami patterns and templates.

Crafter tip: score (make tiny cuts) on the dotted lines, using an exacto knife. Cut along the solid lines using an exacto knife or scissors. Fold on the scored lines and glue cut out to backing to make a 3-D effect.

For more free printable kirigami and 3D pop-up greeting cards, click that link.

Educational 4th of July Arts and Crafts with Holiday History Lesson Connections

Throwing a Fourth of July bash? Looking for child-minder party activities? How 'bout educational 4th of July holiday arts and crafts for kids? Here are patriotic American history craft activities for all ages, children to grown-ups. Make clay, play dough, paint, sidewalk chalk, gifts with these Educational 4th of July Arts and Crafts, Holiday History Lessons for Kids Free printable, budget-friendly, recycled, homemade crafts. Recipes included!

Silly Putty, Lint Dough, Moon Sand and Cool Science Craft Recipes

My kids loved to make stuff in the kitchen; preferable messy stuff! And explosives with noxious smells was also a plus (lol). Summertime is great for backyard or kitchen chemistry crafts. Here are my best recipes for messy, sticky, bouncy, glittery goo! Read on for silly putty, farting putty (makes disgusting sounds boys--and girls--don't tell--love!) flubber, play dough, melting goop, Ectoplasm (slime like from that ancient cartoon Slimer and the Real Ghostbusters--I'm dating myself), oobleck and moon sand recipes. I'll even throw in a few surprise recipes because you're all so nice! I advise you make outside where it won't goo up your kitchen.  Silly Putty, Lint Dough, Moon Sand and Other Science Recipes

Free Printable Father's Day Greeting Cards for Preschoolers and Dad Themed Craft Activities

At your wits end to know what to get dad for Father's Day? Make him something, using these free printable Father's Day greeting cards and dad themed crafts. Good for all ages, even preschoolers! Dad will love your creativity and thoughtfulness.  Free Printable Father's Day Greeting Cards and Craft Activities

Inexpensive Father's Day Photo Frame Crafts from Recycled Materials

Need a cheap (as in cost, not quality) gift for Father's Day? How about a free one? Even better, right? So make photo frame crafts from recycled materials. Personalize with special pictures of you and dad. Here are simple photo frame crafts made by decoration plain picture frames. Collect plain wood, plastic or metal frames. Watch clearance sales, garage sales, rummage sales, even junk piles for photo frames to refurbish. Now read on Easy, Inexpensive, Green Mother's Day / Father's Day Photo Frame Crafts

Free Printable Jigsaw Puzzles and Puzzle Generators

Do you love puzzles like I do? I've been working jigsaw puzzles since I was very young. I love crossword puzzles, Sudoku, word searches, cryptograms, mazes and word games. I called myself the "puzzle genius" (confident, if a bit bombastic, was me). Back in the olden days, aka when I was a kid, you had to ask mom or dad to buy you a puzzle book or jigsaw. You redid your old puzzles, over and over again. In this digital generation we're lucky to have online or free printable puzzles. Indulge your inner puzzle lover with free online puzzles. Use puzzle generator software to create and print jigsaw puzzle templates. Then carefully cut pieces apart and store in a Ziploc bag. Print hundreds of word games and puzzles from your home printer. Use for day care, Sunday School, homeschool, party games and crafts.

Free Printable Jigsaw Puzzles and Puzzles Generator

Memorial Day Party Planner--Games, Crafts, Printables, Recipes, Activities

Holiday party planning is easy when you're dealing with one age group. Planning for young and old is more challenging. Easily-bored kids want to romp while grandparents want to sit (quietly!) and visit. Here's a patriotic Memorial Day party--RWB crafts, all-American food and recipes, kiddie parade, educational activities--everyone from toddlers to seniors, yes even parents, will love!  Cheap Homemade Memorial Day Party Fun for Toddler to Grandparent

Find Free Disney Printables, Frozen Crafts at New Family Fun Spoonful Site

I started this blog almost six years ago. In that time, I've shared gobs of links for free printable Disney crafts. I used the Family Fun website (from Family Fun magazine) quite a lot. Family Fun partners with Disney and is the source for many Disney-themed crafts. Family Fun/Disney has a new website called Spoonful. All the regular Family Fun favorites and Disney crafts can be found there now. I wanted you to know, if you're reading an older article of mine and the printables links don't work, that it might be the old Family Fun one. Sometimes the link will redirect to Spoonful and you can print from there. But if doesn't work, type "" in your URL bar (without the quotes). Then look for what you want. You'll find printables from Disney "Frozen" and "Sophia the First" added. Spoonful has actually expanded the old site so there are loads more crafts. Do you like the 3D stand-up Queen Elsa doll shown in the photo? You can print that plus an entire "Frozen" playset. Just one of the nifty Disney Spoonful freebies. Free Disney Printables from Family Fun New Site Spoonful

Free Printable Cinco De Mayo Coloring Pages, Mexico Crafts

Cinco de Mayo, or Fifth of May, celebrates the victory of the smaller Mexican army over the mighty French juggernaut, in the Battle of Puebla, 1862. Cinco de Mayo is not the Mexican Independence day, but many Latinos living in the U.S. celebrate it. Here are free printable Mexican themed crafts.  And here are free printable coloring pages for Cinco de Mayo. Commemorate the Mexican cultural celebration Cinco de Mayo with free printable crafts, coloring pages and lessons.   Free Printable Cinco De Mayo and Mexico Coloring Pages

Recycled Plastic Bag Basket or Rug Craft for Earth Day

April is Earth Month and what better way to celebrate by repurposing trash? It makes me sad to see plastic grocery bags littering woods and trees.  Here's a craft

I remember from when I was a kid using recycled plastic bread bags and grocery bags. Weave a rug, basket, coaster or mat. Here's how. I know should probably submit this green craft as a video tutorial or slide show, but seriously, it's so easy and self-explanatory that you'll easily get the idea.  Green, Recycled Bread Bag and Plastic Bag Basket or Rug Craft

Cheap, Homemade Easter Basket Fillers with Free Printable Crafts

Looking to make an Easter basket? You could get the ho-hum candy or you could be creative and fill the basket with nifty, useful toys and gifts. Here are cheap Easter basket filler suggestions. I've included free printable crafts, coloring pages, puzzles, toys and books. As the original minimalist mama. I do natural, sustainable, frugal, recycled. I keep holiday giving affordable and sensible. I've used these candy-alternative Easter basket ideas with our four kids. Inexpensive Candy Alternative Easter Basket Ideas for Little Girls

Cheap, Homemade, Safe Easter Egg Dyeing, Recycled Easter Decorations

Waited till the last minute to buy Easter egg dyeing kits for the kids? Now they're sold out and you have to pull a rabbit out of a hat (pun intended) and make your own Easter decorations. Take it from this mom--been there, done that. But I'm nothing if not resourceful, so never fear, last-minute Lisa to the rescue! Here are homemade Easter egg decorations using recycled and on-hand materials. And best of all--they're cheaper and safer than store-bought egg coloring kits! Cheap, Homemade, Safe Easter Egg Dyeing, Recycled Decorations

Free Disney Printable Frozen Crafts

I've written articles on free printable kids crafts since for years. I often link to the Family Fun website (from Family Fun magazine). Family Fun partners with Disney and provides lots of Disney-themed crafts. Family Fun now has a new website Spoonful. Besides regular Family Fun goodies, Disney crafts can be found there too.  Free Disney Printables from Family Fun New Site Spoonful

Hands-On, Open-Ended Creative Kids' Art Activities

Kids need art like plants need sun. In fact, art imitates childhood, when it grows organically and isn't manufactured. I had a sad childhood experience with formula art. A teacher publicly criticized my piece for not fitting the mold.
Admittedly, I didn't follow directions. She specifically said start drawing in the middle of the page. And I drew a boat along the bottom. I completely forgot, being caught up in the joy of creating. And it killed my confidence. Here's how not to let that happen with kids. Art Imitates Childhood: Hands-On, Creative Kids' Art Activities

Cheap, Recycled Gift Craft for Kids--Decoupage Vases

I empathize with moms of little ones--too cold to play outside for long. How about a cheap, chilly day craft for housebound kids? Most everything you need comes from your recycle bin. It's an easy retro crafting technique called decoupage or Mod Page.  Cheap, Recycled Gift Craft for Children

Preschool Animal Alphabet Snacks From A-Z Homemade, Healthy

Teachers, want to make ABCs fun? Here are healthy animal alphabet-themed snacks from A-Z. Use Alpha-Bits cereal, letter pretzels, cookies for letter shape. Make character sandwiches using any spread and leave open face. Use pretzels or matchstick carrots for whiskers. For eyes, use Cheerios, spray cheese, raisins, olives, banana or kiwi slices. Make ears, nose and mouth from apple bits, pimentos, pepper pieces, triangle chips or crackers. Use pretzel sticks for legs. For cookie creations, use candy or fruit to make faces.  Preschool Animal Alphabet Themed Snacks From A-Z

Preschool Valentine Math Craft: Edible Flashcard Cookies

 My friend wrote an article showing adorable Valentine cookies she made. And friend wrote about that Valentine staple, Necco Sweethearts conversation candy hearts. From those sprang this cute Valentine math snack craft game Easy Preschool Valentine Math Craft Snack: Edible Flashcard Cookies 

Easy, No Sew Recycled Homemade Bunk Bed Play Fort

I am always impressed by the creativity of others. My Bubblews friend wrote about an adorable pair of PJ pants she whipped up from a common household object. That prompted me to share a quickie thing I made. I can sew, but use no-sew workarounds if possible. This homemade bed play fort, made in under a minute, costs only a few bucks. You know, like those fabric play forts that come on bunk beds and cost a fortune?   One Minute Recycled Homemade Bunk Bed Play Fort 

Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics XXII Coloring Pages, Plus Russian Crafts

Everywhere I look is rings. Five intertwined blue, red, green, black, yellow to be exact. That's right, it's 2014 Winter Olympics fever and Sochi is the place to be February 7-23! As a teacher, mom and former homeschooler, I always look for ways to teach any world event in the classroom. Here are free printable winter Olympics lessons plans. Games, crafts, coloring pages, puzzles, sports-themed worksheets--all you need to explore. There are activities about Russia and the city of Sochi, too.  Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics XXII Printables, Lessons on Russia

Easy Ceramic Dish Design Craft

My daughter designed a platter for me for Christmas. She copied a recipe from my grandmother in my grandmother's handwriting on it. As grandma is now deceased, God rest her soul, it's very special. I was thinking how perfect it would be for bored, snowbound kids or adults to make. Shut-in seniors might like making these too. All you need is permanent markers, glassware and an oven. If you're designing a surface that contacts food, use food safe markers.  Snowbound this Winter? Make This Easy Craft My Daughter Made

Recycled Craft for Kids

Here's a favorite craft that I used decades ago, made with recycled materials.  Pet baby tornado. With a name like that, can you see why it so intrigues kids? Give each child a glass jar with lid or have them bring from home. Have them wash at school and teach life skills of dishwashing. When clean, fill jar almost to top with water (leave a little room) and add a drop of dish soap.  Pet Tornado Craft for Kids

Free Chinese New Year 2014 Year of the Horse, Kung Fu Panda Printables

The Chinese calendar system is centuries older than the Gregorian calendar. The Chinese New Year January 31 in 2014. 2014 is the Year of the Tiger, or Wu Ma as it is called in the older Chinese tradition. Teacher, home-schoolers, explore world cultures with these free resources. Here are Chinese New Year printables with lessons, crafts, puzzles, games and materials. There are Kung Fu Panda and Lantern Festival activities, too. Free Printable Activities for the Chinese New Year

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