It’s hard to believe that today is the last day of March. This year is passing by much to quickly. But one thing that I am not sad to see go is Winter! I am craving some warm spring weather and it looks like it is starting to peak around the corner. As today is Easter Sunday, this past week I wanted to do some Easter type crafts and activities with the boys that I babysit. Well, technically I only did the activities with the older boy as the younger is still under one. But only for a few more hours because his Birthday is tomorrow!
I started searching for some cheap or free activities that we could do together; so of course I took to Pinterest to explore what others had come up with for toddlers. There was a wealth of ideas out there, but the crafts that I settled on, came from This Site.
For Monday, I made an Easter Egg matching game.
It was super easy to put together and I didn’t have to purchase anything to make the cards. I simply drew an egg shaped template, traced around it onto scrapbooking paper, and cut out the eggs. Once I had all of my eggs (I made a total of 10), I cut pieces of card stock into 4th’s and glued the eggs onto the cards. Once the glue had dried, I cut the cards in half. The first time we played, I kept all the cards turned face up and he just matched them together. But every time after that, we turned the cards over. He liked to turn one card face up and then go through all the other cards to find its match. He seemed to really enjoy the game and I found him asking if we could “do eggs” again! We played several times on Monday and again the next day.
On Tuesday, we made the classic paper plate, cotton ball bunnies.
(After I took this photo I realized that they looked a little more like kitties than bunnies… but oh well, it gave us something to do and he had fun with the “puff balls!”)
I didn’t have all the things that you would normally use to make these (like pipe cleaners and google-y eyes) so in order to keep the craft free, I improvised a little with strips of pink paper, black dots that I colored and cut out of card stock, and a Sharpie Marker. The night before I cut out all the little pieces so that it would be easy to just glue everything together. This craft went really well, he enjoyed it and just giggled through the whole process! And then he had fun taking pictures with my phone after we had finished them.
For our Thursday activities, (I have Wednesdays off, and actually this week I had Friday off as well) we made and decorated sugar cookies and played with plastic Eggs. I just used a Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie mix because I thought it would be easier for him to work with. He loves to bake and so he really enjoyed this activity! We had fun adding and stirring the ingredients together, rolling out the dough, and cutting it into circles using the rim of a cup as our cookie cutter. I wanted to do actual Easter Egg cookies, but I didn’t have an egg shaped cookie cutter and didn’t want to buy one specifically for the occasion, so I thought circles would be just as good! After we baked them we had to let them cool for a while then we decorated them with Betty Crocker cookie icing and sprinkles. (And by the way… the younger boy was not neglected during any of these activities, they were all done in his nap times! So we baked the cookies in the morning nap and decorated them in the afternoon nap. It worked out really well.)
And of course we had to make train tracks and Mickey Mouse in our icing designs! They may not be the most dignified looking cookies, but for a mix and store bought icing, they were pretty tasty!
I bought a package of plastic eggs at Target a few weeks ago for $1, but couldn’t decide what I wanted to do with the eggs. I thought about an Easter Egg hunt, but I didn’t know if it would be nice enough outside to do it. So I decided to go for an inside counting game. I put a penny in each egg, and put the eggs in an egg carton that I had cleaned out and saved, and thought we could make a game out of it. And it turns out we could!
He liked hearing the pennies shake around in the eggs and giggled every time I opened an egg to reveal another penny.
We took the pennies from the eggs and put them in the compartments of the egg carton, counting them while we did it. And then put all the pennies in one egg to make a really loud shaker or “a big one” as he called it. And so on. He did really well with counting them out and putting them back in the eggs. It seemed to be a pretty good game for only spending $1.12 on it!
So other than the eggs, I only paid for the cookie mix and icing, which was about $6 for both. Pretty good for a week of Easter activities! He did so well with the crafts and games, I plan to continue to search for some other cheap crafts that we can do together.