{Snow Day} Fun!

We have yet to have an official "Snow Day", but we have still managed to have some snowy winter fun.  Check out these simple and inexpensive winter activities you can do with kids.

Snowflake Pancakes - To make these adorable pancakes:  Make some pancake batter, and color half of it blue.  Then, use a cookie cutter to cut out a snowflake shapes, and switch the pancake centers.  It is really simple, and your little ones will definitely be impressed. 

Snow Painting... and a Fun Way to Warm Up - Put a little food coloring and water into spray bottles, and set your little artists to work on the freshly fallen snow canvas.  Then, when it is time to come in and warm up, stick some glow sticks in a nice warm bath.  Your little ones will thank you.

Snowflake Book Page Banner - It's always fun to have decor to fit the season, especially when it is handmade.  This snowflake banner is so cute that it will make your little crafters beam with pride.  {Click on the link for the full step by step tutorial.}

Toilet Roll Snowman - This adorable snowman craft is a perfect indoor activity on a stormy afternoon.  {Click on the link for the full step by step tutorial.}

Snowman Kisses - This tiny box is just big enough for one Hershey's Kiss.  Isn't this a great little treat for someone special?  {Click on the link for a free printable box.}

These are a few of our favorite winter activities.  What are some of yours?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

* You can find me on facebook here.

{Beary} Cute School Valentines

Earlier this week, I shared my "Berry" Cute School Valentines, and they were a huge hit.  So today, I thought I would share my new version - "Beary" Cute School Valentines.

Aren't they adorable?  I just put some "Teddy Grahams" in a bag, added a cute little "I am BEARY happy to have a friend like you" tag, and tied it with some ribbon.  So simple!

And... you can find a free printable version of the tags here.

Isn't Valentine's Day fun?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

* You can find me on facebook here.

{Berry} Cute School Valentines

I always love sending my boys to school with cute/original Valentines for their friends, don't you?  Here is what I came up with yesterday:

Isn't it cute?  I just put some "Swedish Berry" candies in a bag, added a cute little "I am BERRY happy to have a friend like you" tag, and tied it with a ribbon.  So simple.  :-)

I have even created a free printable template for you that you can find here.

These tags would be cute for chocolate covered strawberries too.  In case anyone wants to be my Valentine, I LOVE chocolate covered strawberries.  lol

... And what about some "I am BEARY happy to have a friend like you" tags {for little bags of Teddy Grahams}?  If you are interested, you can find them here.

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

* You can find me on facebook here.

Snowflake {book page banner}

Christmas is over, and Valentine's Day is a month away, so now is the perfect time to do some "winter" crafting.  Yesterday, my three year old and I made this fantastic snowflake book page banner.

Isn't it cute?  It is simple to make, and your little one will love all the glue and glitter.  :-)

Want to make one?  Here's what you do:

1)  Cut out five snowflake shapes.  {I used some blue construction paper and a cookie cutter.}
2)  Use some glue to make designs on each of the snowflakes.
3)  Glue buttons or other embellishments onto the middle of the snowflakes.
4)  Pour glitter onto the snowflakes and shake off the excess.

Then, after the snowflakes are completely dry, use glue or double-sided tape to attach them to book pages.  Cut a "V" shape out of the bottom of each book page, hole punch the tops, and string the banner together with some yarn.

Do you like making "winter" crafts this time of year, or do you jump right into Valentine's Day crafting?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)
* You can find me on facebook here.


New Year's Eve Countdown Activities for Kids

***Updated FREE tags and printables to include in the activity bags here.***

New Year's Eve with the kids can be a lot of fun... especially if you are prepared.  So, this year, I put together 8 countdown bags filled with fun surprises for the kids.

The plan is to let the kids open a bag every hour as we count down to midnight.  To make the bags, I used: regular brown lunch bags, colored cardstock, and a Sharpie.  I taped the clocks to the front of the bags, filled them with goodies, and stapled them shut.  Easy, right?

All the contents are inexpensive, but the boys will have a lot of fun opening each bag.  Here is what I used:

5:00pm - "Year in review" questionnaires, which you can find here.

6:00pm - Supplies to make New Year's Eve party hats.  {You can find the ones we are making here.}

7:00pm - Balloons from the Dollar Store... to decorate for the big countdown.

8:00pm - Cars from the Dollar Store. 

9:00pm - A little snack.

10:00pm - Noisemakers.

11:00pm - More noisemakers.

12:00am - Cookies and milk for a midnight toast.

We may actually start earlier than 5pm... as I doubt the kids will make it to midnight.  We'll see how things go!

Happy New Year!

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Check out activity bag ideas for older kids here.

An you can find more New Year's Eve activities and ideas here.

Year in Review {Free Printable}

***Find an updated 2022 version here.***

New Year's Eve is a time for reflecting on the past year and looking forward to the new one -- not just for adults, but for kids too. So... each year, I put together a Year in Review questionnaire for my boys to fill out on New Year's Eve.

It is a pretty simple questionnaire, and you can download the free printable by clicking on the picture (above), right-clicking, saving it to your computer, and printing it like a regular 8X10 photo.

I love seeing what my boys come up with each year. Maybe I will make a book for each of my boys when they are older.  :-)

Happy New Year, everybody!

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Christmas Eve Traditions

Christmas Eve is my absolute favourite day of the year, and I always try to make it special for my boys.  I believe that family rituals and traditions bring families together and provide the foundation for childhood memories. Today, I am sharing my family's Christmas Eve Traditions.

1)  Special Christmas PJs - My boys always get new Christmas PJs to wear on Christmas Eve... and they always look so cute in the Christmas morning pictures.

You can do a fun Christmas Eve basket too. I have a lovely FREE printable tag here.

2)  Cookies for Santa and Reindeer Food on the Lawn - We always bake cookies for Santa, and we leave them on our kitchen table with a big glass of milk.  And of course, we don't forget about the reindeer.  We always sprinkle reindeer food on the lawn before heading to bed.  It is made from Cheerios, oats, and magic sprinkles {colored sugar crystals}.  If you want to package it ahead of time, you can find a cute tag here.

3)  Magic Santa Key - We don't have a chimney, so we always leave Santa a magic key to make sure he is able to get into our house without any problems.  {You can find a free Santa Key Tag printable here.}

4)  Saying Goodbye to Elfie - Before heading to bed, we always say goodbye to our Elf on the Shelf{Then, in the morning, the boys are always happy to see he has left a note and a new Christmas movie.}

5)  Reading "The Night Before Christmas"- The last thing we do, before heading to bed, is read "The Night Before Christmas".  {I love this part!}

I am a firm believer that traditions bond a family together.  Does your family have any special Christmas Eve traditions?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

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