Cute Cork Rowboats: FamilyFun Test Drive

When I saw this cork boat project in the August issue of FamilyFun, I knew it was one I wanted to test drive. I thought it was an amazing project, but I was also so in love with the photo—a peaceful lake, rocks, little ripples of water soft in the background. And I thought it would be impossible to beat or even match that photo (see below), especially in this urban jungle in which I live. So I decided to turn these into the ultimate, homemade bath toy! And it was a hit…I could hear Oliver and Sommer singing Row, Row, Row Your Boat across the house!

What you’ll need:

  • Template printed from FamilyFun
  • Scissors
  • Pen for tracing
  • Thin cork
  • Hot-glue gun (for adult use!)
  • Paint and paintbrushes
  • Twine
  • Craft foam
  • Wooden coffee stirrers
First cut out the template from FamilyFun online, trace it onto the cork, and cut it out. Follow the instructions on the template for gluing it together. (It’s really easy) Then, it’s time to paint!
You have to use acrylic paint (this is very important)—tempera will wash off the moment it hits the water. Sommer decided to go with a pink, green, and blue combo and Oliver went for solid silver glitter. He’s the minimalist in the family.
Once they are dry, punch a hole in the bow (the front of the boat) and thread the twine through. Then cut paddle shapes from the craft foam, glue them to the coffee stirrers, and insert through tiny slits in the sides of the boat.
After having just spent a week at the beach, the kids were insistent on naming their boats, so we went for Oliver, Sommer, and Mommy (original, right?). I used acrylic paint pens to keep it neat, but a Sharpie would probably work just fine.
And then, when bath time was over, we just hung them up to dry. And I’m loving how they look like old buoys when grouped together like this.
Add a Comment

Drip-Painted Pots: FamilyFun Test Drive

 

My kids are finally getting to the age when a lazy beach vacation needs planned activities—no more naps on mommy’s chest under the beach umbrella and no more satisfaction with simply sitting on the floor swatting at some random toys. We need outings, games, activities…crafts! And seriously, I couldn’t be happier with this turn of events.

But crafting on the fly isn’t always so easy—do you bring materials with you and if not, where do you buy them? How can you keep it simple and engaging at the same time? (I see a future FamilyFun magazine story here!)

Today I thrilled my kids with this really fun, painted pot project from the August issue of FamilyFun. They loved helping me buy the materials and then making a big mess of themselves!

What you’ll need:

  • Paint (tempera or acrylic)
  • Ceramic pots
  • Tape
  • Paper
  1. Cover the bottom hole inside the pot with tape so that the paint doesn’t come through.
  2. Turn pot upside down and squeeze away, letting the paint drip down the sides. 
  3. Let it dry for about 24 hours before turning it over.

You can use either tempera or acrylic paint—it all depends on what’s important to you. If washing clothes is important, go with tempera. If using the pot to plant in is important, go with acrylic, just know that it’s not as washable as tempera when dry. 

And then they wanted to paint everything in site…so we painted an egg carton, a Pringles can, sticks, our feet…it was endless fun!

Home Organization: Arts & Crafts Supplies
Home Organization: Arts & Crafts Supplies
Home Organization: Arts & Crafts Supplies

Add a Comment

Sea Creature Bread Snack: FamilyFun Test Drive

There’s something about eating food that’s in the shape of something else that makes it super fun. Why is that? And especially if it has arms, legs, eyes, tentacles…that just adds to the enjoyment! I became the best mom on the block today when I served these octopus bread treats to Oliver and his friends. The original recipe in the August issue of Family Fun called for olives as eyes, but in order to win the Mom-of-the-Year award, I used chocolate chips. This is the easiest project in the world…here’s how you do it.

  1. Unroll crescent rolls onto 2 cookie sheets.
  2. On the short side of the triangle, cut 7 2″ slits. 
  3. Roll top point down towards the 8 legs. Then press your eyes of choice into the dough.

Bake them in a 350 degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Et voila! Adorable, edible sea creatures!

Octopus Cupcakes
Octopus Cupcakes
Octopus Cupcakes

Add a Comment

Tags: | Categories: FamilyFun Test Drive, Food, Fun, kids

Playing with Food at Lunch

This is a post from Holly Homer of Kids Activities Blog provided by our sponsor Del Monte. This content was commissioned by our brand partner.  Such content is not written by, and does not necessarily reflect the views of parents.com.

I have to admit that lunchtime has gotten boring. When the time to eat rolls around, the kids and I just open the fridge and hope a meal falls out.

To date, that hasn’t occurred.

And then the other day, I had a moment of motherhood brilliance. We added an activity that was a lunch sidedish…or was it a lunch sidedish that was an activity?

Del Monte Fruit Bursts

Inspired by the many flavor combinations of the Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezers and the convenient pouch, we used them to create fruit & veggie puree pictures!

I started by giving each kid a clear plate.

DIY Lunch Monster Plates

Under the plate, the kids positioned a simple coloring page. We used these free monster coloring pages, but any coloring page with simple, large graphics will work.

Then a variety of Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezers were used as paint. Our research showed that the Simply Fruit Strawberry, Simply Fruit Apple-Cinnamon, and Fruit + Veggie Peach-Mango had the most diversity of color.

DIY Lunch Monster Plates

Each creation used approximately 1 1/2 Squeezers – the kids shared the “colors” using the pouches as pre-filled paint brushes.

My kids continued coloring until their artistic vision was complete.

DIY Lunch Coloring Plate

We loved how the final art creations turned out.

But the most fun came at the end with art destruction! Each of us had a custom-flavored creation that was rapidly scooped up with a spoon.

Add a Comment

Tags: | Categories: Food

Decorating Their Lunch Sacks

This is a post from Jamie Reimer of Hands On As We Grow provided by our sponsor Del Monte. This content was commissioned by our brand partner.  Such content is not written by, and does not necessarily reflect the views of parents.com.

We don’t do home packed lunches very often. Usually only for field trip days. And on those days, my kids are so excited to pack and take their lunch.

I’m very honored and excited to be partnering with Del Monte fruits and vegetables to share with you a creative way to get kids excited about eating their fruits and veggies in their lunches during school.

To make these sack lunch days extra special and even more exciting for my kids, we’ve decided to add their own little touch to their lunch sacks.

This time we made a lunch sack that’s also to get them excited for back to school (we always have fun getting the kids excited to go back to school!).

We did some apple printing!

Its really simple to do and its kind of magical to the kids.

Apple Painting

I simply cut an apple in half [top to bottom]. With half of an apple, the kids dipped it in some red paint [though green would work great too!].

Its best if they stamp the apple somewhere before stamping it onto their lunch sack. That gets the excess paint off so there’s no globs.

They can stamp an apple on a paper lunch sack a couple of times until the print becomes faded and then just dip in the paint again.

Apple Painting

Apple printing is a quick and simple process. We made up several lunch bags in a matter of minutes!

Apple Painting

We let the sacks dry for the afternoon and I came back later to add in finishing touches of the stem, leaf and seeds using permanent markers.

All that’s left is to pack them with healthy snacks and food for lunch. I always drop in a fruit pouch like Del Monte Fruit Burst Squeezer.

At home, we always have Del Monte plastic fruit cups. But for packed lunches, I always prefer the mess-free and spoon-free Squeezers. And the Fruit Burst Squeezers offer the goodness of 1 ½ servings of fruits and vegetables, with no artificial flavors.

Apple Painting Lunchbox

Through the back to school season, Del Monte would love to have you share a photo of your kids’ favorite Del Monte snack. What do you prefer – to squeeze or spoon? The Fruit Burst Squeezers or Plastic Fruit Cups?

There’s a contest on the Del Monte Facebook page through all of August [August 1 to September 1] for you to share and have a chance to win!

Add a Comment

Tags: | Categories: Crafts, Everyday Fun, Family, Food