When financial times get tough, mothers get creative. We still need to keep our rambunctious and energetic children happy and engaged right? The word ‘upcycle’ has become popular with the important recycling / reusing message we are teaching our children today. Here are two eco-friendly kid’s projects that from start-to-finish teach kids about reducing plastic & reusing everyday items. They are also two of the most popular items in my house and are the cause of many arguments with my children ranging in age from 3-6: sketchbooks and play dough. When one of my four kids starts playing or drawing with either of these items, the other kids want to participate.
Click here to read about the greatest play dough recipe ever! It is so much better than store-bought play dough that I haven’t bought any in almost a year and it’s my favorite activity with all my kids. It stays fresh for weeks and they love making it, dying it, and playing for hours. I recently kicked this activity up a notch by dying my latest batch of play dough with vegetable dye. I had beets left over from the organic produce co-op I belong to so I simply sliced the beets into small sections and dabbed the play dough with the vegetable. Boom….like magic my play dough turned red and it was very cool when my kids noticed that this dye washed off their hands easily, where as the artificial dye we normally use, lingered for days.
The second awesome DIY activity was sent to me from a talented Etsy mom. Do you remember reading Golden Books for hours with your children? Once your kids move past the ‘Golden book phase’ of reading, you can put these dog eared favorites to good use. Upcycle these books into sketchpads that can be filled with your child’s imagination. In our house, the favorite thing right now is for my boys to narrate a story, I write it and they dictate and illustrate. This combined in a Golden Book journal would be a magical keepsake! If you would like to look at or purchase these wonderful treasures, check out these fun Etsy stores:
US location: This Handmade Life with my favorite 101 Dalmations