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Crafty Corner If you are creative, love to knit or crochet, paint, or just enjoy making fun stuff with your kids, this is the forum for you.

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Old 07-02-2003, 02:03 PM
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Outdoor Fun

Outdoor Fun


Have kids draw pictures on the driveway or sidewalk with chalk. Sidewalk chalk is now available in many department stores with is thicker then normal chalk, but any chalk will work. Have lots though it wears down quickly. As an added bonus it washes up quickly with the first rain.

Sidewalk Chalk

Dixie cups
Plaster or casting compound
Powder paint
Craft sticks
Pour 1/2 cup of plaster into Dixie cup (cup should be 1/2 full). Add about 1 Tbsp. of powder paint to plaster and a little water. Mixture should be moist but not watery or soupy. Mix the ingredients together with craft sticks for 1 minute or 2. let the mixture dry for 24 hrs.

Street Chalk

Plaster of Paris
water based paint in different colors (washable tempera was recommended)
assorted plastic containers (laundry detergent scoops, small yogurt containers, etc.)
Spread newspaper on work surface. Fill large plastic container half full of plaster of Paris and slowly add water. Stir until the plaster looks and feels like pudding. Next, add paint until you have the color you want. Scoop the mixture into small containers and let it set for about one day, or until all of the water has evaporated. When the plaster is dry, turn the containers upside down and hit them on a hard surface until the chalk falls out.

Eggshell Sidewalk Chalk

1 teaspoon very hot tap water
food coloring (optional)
Wash & dry eggshells. Put into bowl & grind into a powder. Discard any large pieces. Place enough flour and hot water in another bowl to make a paste. Add 1 tablespoon eggshell powder and mix until a paste forms. Add food coloring if desired.
Shape and press mixture firmly into the shape of a chalk stick, and roll up tightly in a strip of paper towel. Allow to dry approximately 3 days until hard. Remove paper towel. Presto! You have chalk! Eggshell chalk is for sidewalks only.
Submitted by Judy Keller

Fire Fighting

sidewalk chalk
squirt bottles
Draw a pretend fire on the side of your house or garage with colored chalk. Use water-filled squirt bottles to put the fire out. As your child squirts, the fire will magically disappear.
Submitted by Sue White


2 cups warm water
1 cup liquid dishwashing soap
1/4 cup glycerine
1 tsp. sugar
Mix together water, soap, glycerine and sugar. Store solution in a plastic container with tight fitting lid. Use straws, six-pack holders, unbreakable household items, funnels to blow bubbles with. Simply dip in solution and blow or wave gently in the air.
Bubble Fun

Dawn dish soap
Baby pool
box or crate
hula hoop
Bubbles are a lot of fun, but glycerin in the eyes STINGS! The best recipe of all is just DAWN dishwashing liquid and water! They make the absolute best bubbles!
For lots of bubble fun...get a baby pool and fill it with bubble solution. Place a box or a crate in the middle that kids can stand on...get a hula hoop and place it over the box/crate and into the bubble mixture, then have a child stand on the box/crate. An adult can pull up the hula hoop and it makes a bubble as big as the kids and they are actually INSIDE the bubble! Kids love it! Take pictures!
We use just plain water and paint brushes and run around painting things on the ground and watch the hot sun make them disappear!
Submitted by Anne Hansen

Non-glycerine Bubbles

1/4 cup sugar
2 quarts warm water
3/4 cup liquid detergent (Joy)
Mix 1/4 cup sugar with 2 quarts of warm water. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add 3/4 cup liquid detergent (Joy works best). Be careful not to whip up small bubbles while mixing.
Use six-pack holder, a circle of yarn, bent clothes hangers to blow bubbles.

Bubble Tip

Strawberry basket
Use a clean, empty plastic strawberry basket to dip in bubble mixture. A small child can easily life it up in the wind for hundreds of bubbles. Submitted by Jane Bilman

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Here's a great game for summer fun outdoors. One person is the Octopus and stands in the middle of the yard. The kids stand at one end of the yard and the Octopus says
"William, William (or whomever),swim across the ocean".
"William" runs across the yard and the Octopus tries to tag him. If he gets tagged, he becomes a frozen sea creature and tries to block the path of another "swimmer".
Those who make it across the yard "win" (although we don't make a big deal of this) and we give everyone a turn being the Octopus.

Backyard camping

Kids don't need to go far to enjoy outdoor camping - the backyard is just fine with them. Set up a tent in the backyard and enjoy. If campfires are not permitted in your area - pretend with flashlights. Have a snack and a campfire sing-along before bed. Older kids can be left outside overnight but you may not get any sleep if you keep getting up to check on them. Don't forget the spooky fireside story for older kids!!

Bird Watching

Go for a walk with kids and see how many different birds you can spot. You can bring a notebook and write down the ones you see - if you don't know what they are describe them and then go to a library and track down what you saw. Bird books are also available at most book stores.

Mud painting

Have kids dig up a good pile of dirt and give them a hose to make dirt. Then transport the mud to the driveway. Allow kids to use old paintbrushes to paint with the mud. They will have just as much fun cleaning it up with the hose. Old washable clothes advised.

Backyard picnic

You don't have to go far to enjoy a backyard picnic. Have the kids help you plan a special snack to back in a basket. Grab a blanket and go sit out in the backyard. Bring a good summer story book, sit back, get some fresh air and enjoy.

Slippery Slides

Garbage bags or large piece of plastic
Dishwashing soap
Hose or sprinkler
Spread out the plastic on the lawn on a hot summer day. Pour a little dishwashing soap on the plastic then turn on the hose. Kids love to run and slide on it, especially on a sloped yard.
Water Fights

What would summer be without water balloons, water guns, the hose and buckets of water. Sponges are a safe alternative. Parents should supervise these "fights" so that no one gets hurt. It's a great way to cool off on a hot day.

Wall Painting

Food Colouring Or Dye
Paint Brushes
Put water in jars. Stir in Food Colouring or Dye. Paint on a wall ( no mark will be shown ).TIP! don`t put to much Food Colouring or Dye.
Submitted by Caterina Lovegrove, Perth, Australia
I am personally skeptical that dye would not stay on walls - test on a small area before doing this - Wendy

Looking for Gold

Ahead of time spray paint pebbles with gold spray paint. Bury in the sandbox. Tell your kids you are looking for Fool's Gold. Using a plastic toy sieve or kitchen sieve have kids sift through the sand. They will be amazed when they find the gold!!

Nature Walks

All kids love the outdoors. If you live within walking distance of the woods plan a visit on a known trail. Bring a notebook or knapsack to keep notes and treasures. If you are not near the woods, drive to a park with lots of trees and pretend you are deep in the forest. Look for wildlife and bugs - kids love them. Remember what ever you bring into the forest bring out - do not litter - and be kind to wildlife.

Obstacle Course

Set up an obstacle course in your backyard for kids to have hours of fun with. Use outdoor furniture, hoses, cardboard boxes, tires, picnic tables, whatever you can find outdoors.


Most school grounds have hopscotch grids on their school grounds. You can copy this and make one in your driveway. Moms and Dads can enjoy a game of Hopscotch with the kids in the privacy of their own yards.

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