When I was a kid, Easter meant one thing: a chocolate bunny. That’s it. That’s all I wanted because that’s all I knew. The rabbit was everything. And that’s because our family hadn’t built any other traditions around the holiday. This is something I aim to change.
Now that I’m an adult, and I’ve read enough to know that sugar is something best in moderation, I want to make sure special occasions are centered around activities rather than a sugar rush and crash cycle.
Now, when Easter sneaks up on me, I am prepared with a host of easy crafts to keep everybody engaged in a positive way. In the northeast, where I live, the ground is likely to be frozen or muddy or some horrible mix of the two, so the traditional Easter egg hunt can end up with indoor meltdowns or mud-tracked mayhem. So, instead of, or in addition to, either of those traditions, here are five crafts you can do with your family for Easter.
Papier-mache eggs, a 2-day project.
Easter traditions in the U.S. usually include some kind of reveal: a hidden basket or eggs for kids to find, maybe both. So, this is a craft idea that can contain a surprise. Think of them like little piñatas, which can be stuffed with toys, games, cards and yes, candy.
To make the egg shape, all you need is a balloon, tissue or newsprint and paste. Search for papier-mache Easter eggs and you’ll see plenty of free video tutorials. Most require two days because the paper and paste needs to dry before you can paint.
If you feel like getting fancy, papier-mache eggs make great table decorations. And papier-mache eggs can make a good substitute for actual eggs if someone has an allergy. If you are trying to get out of the habit of using plastic eggs, mache eggs may make good sense.
Easter bunny masks/ bunny ears
Kids love to play at becoming all sorts of creatures, so they will probably be super excited to have a bunny mask of their own or at least a set of ears. All you need is a couple of paper plates to get started.
This is a super-easy project that starts with cutting eye holes in the plate and can get as involved as you want. You can make elaborate, decorated ears or let the kids go to town with crayons and markers.
Make your own cards
If you have to give cards or even make place settings this is a good task for the littles. They love to think they are helping. If you make a stencil out of cardboard or other posterboard you have around from packaging, they can trace out any number of chicks, rabbits, and lambs. As always, get those stencils online for free. There are plenty to choose from.
Create an upcycled Easter basket
Who says you have to buy one every year? I’ll bet you have everything you need, except maybe time, to help the kids build their own baskets. Think about it. You can use plastic bottles, left-over paper cups, Amazon boxes. You name it. Be creative and create something unique that the kids can be proud of while also helping the environment.
Build a bunny terrarium
Don’t buy an actual bunny. That’s almost always a poor decision as getting a pet is a serious choice that should not be made just because it’s a holiday. You can, however, build a habitat for your candy rabbits.
Dig into your recycling bin for glass jars. Run them through the dishwasher and remove the label. The kids can create an Easter home for their chocolate bunny or Peeps inside.
Crafting is for everyone
You don’t need to spend to craft. I start by looking around at what I have on hand. Because, if there’s one thing I know, it’s that the cost of cuteness at a Michael’s craft store adds up fast. And craft shops are great, but with a little planning, I can be more careful about choosing to buy a few key items to punch up what I already have at home, rather than buying all of my needs there.
Try not to compare the outcome of your projects to the Pinterest and Instagram pictures you’ll see when you look up stencils and video how-tos. Take the ideas and try to understand that imperfection is the spice of life. Anyway, the pictures you’ll take may have hilarious memorable captions.
–By Nic DeSmet