Paper Snowflakes – Fun and Free

by Sandy L on November 30, 2010

This Saturday I had a really fun afternoon with the kids. With the extra 2 days off, the normal errands that need doing on the weekends were already behind us.

We started off by buying a $300 used Kohler tub at the Restore for $50 (Ka-ching) that looked like it had never been used. My husband was taking the weekend to slave away on Babci’s bathroom, so my job was to keep the kid’s entertained.  After a little snack at Babci’s (cream of wheat with maple syrup),  we went to the mall to the “Bouncy Place”.  When we got back home, my little one collapsed for a nap. We had already watched too much TV this week, so my 5 year old decided that he wanted to make a couple of paper airplanes. I have no idea where he came up with that idea, but since I am a crappy paper airplane maker, I googled it. That interest lasted about 2 minutes, so I decided I wanted to make some snowflakes instead.

I used to make snowflakes as a kid but they weren’t always as cool as some of the ones I’ve seen. When I researched it, I realized I was folding the paper all wrong.   If you decided to have a little fun with it, make sure you find a good snowflake site, like Dave’s Snowflakes.  He has a good diagram on how to fold the paper and also has some free patterns if you’re creatively challenged. If nothing else, it was good to see how his patterns translated to different features and it gave me some inspiration.

My 5 year old had a little trouble with cutting out the patterns, so if your child is younger, you can take a marker and ask them to draw a shape on the  folded up paper. If they can’t cut it themselves then you can do it for them yet they still feel like they designed it themselves.  Later on, we found a hole puncher and my son was able to punch out his own patterns lickety split. I wish I took a photo of the mess we made. There were bits of paper everywhere.

Long weekends are great. I truly felt like I had a little extra time to just goof around and have fun. I wish every weekend could be so carefree.  I also like making Christmas cookies this time of year, but it seems like it’s much more of a  time commitment. With snowflakes, you can do it for as long as you’re interested, but you can also stop at anytime.  This might become a new tradition.

What are people’s favorite free holiday things to do?

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Everyday Tips November 30, 2010 at 9:59 AM

My comment got deleted by Captcha!

I will try again. My daughter makes giants 3 dimensional snowflakes that are fun. I have great memories of making snowflakes as a little kid, leaving a trail of little paper snippets all over the place. (Who ever wants to clean up after having fun?)

Winter is great because of the opportunities to slow down and have family time. Game nights are popular here, as we all love Scattergories and Apples to Apples!

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Aloysa November 30, 2010 at 2:44 PM

Christmas is my favorite time – full of great expectations. One of the free Holiday things that we do is we go on our so called Christmas walk to see Christmas lights and decorations downtown.

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Crystal November 30, 2010 at 2:50 PM

I enjoy putting out the Christmas decorations on the long weekend. I plug in the lights on the Christmas tree as soon as I get home and just look at the pretty, lol…

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Ted A. November 30, 2010 at 3:05 PM

More often than not, I have been creating our own annual Christmas/Holiday cards. We always prefer to send out unique cards each year, and also with a dachshund theme (a.k.a. weiner dogs). Well, there are only so many “dachshund themed” Christmas cards out there in the world (although they seem to be getting more popular). One year the wife said, “You’re creative. Why don’t you come up with something?”, and so I did. I think this year will be the 5th one I’ve created.

I draw up a few ideas, see which ones she likes, and then I work on the final version. Then I scan it into my computer, design the finished card in PowerPoint, and then print them on card-stock at home. They look great, and many people don’t realize that I made them until they look on the back of the card. … and although this technically isn’t a “free thing-to-do”, or my primary motivation, it does end up being frugal. Even for my most “ink-intensive” designs where I’ve had to replace printer cartriges, it has cost us less than buying the pre-made cards.

I think this would be a great project for anyone with kids. Have them draw some holiday pictures (or take ones they’ve drawn at school) and use them to create your Christmas cards. It could become a fun tradition (and perhaps less hastle than wrangling them into matching outfits for a family photo).

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Sandy L November 30, 2010 at 5:05 PM

Kris – 3-D Snowflakes, now that’s hard core.

Aloysa – yeah, we have to do the lights thing. There is a big spectacle about an hour from us, but the traffic is usually insane. I should give it a try again. The last time I went, my younger son was 2 weeks old, screaming and we were in a traffic jam for an hour with no place to pull over. That was not fun.

BFS – We’re going to decorate this weekend. I’m looking forward to it.

Ted – I always look forward to your dog cards. They always make the top 5 list of best cards of the season. Scanning a picture is a great idea, but relatives do want to see the real photos of the kids too. But I can do one of each I suppose. We’ll see if my son’s up for it. Great idea.

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Ted A. November 30, 2010 at 8:03 PM

I definitely appreciate the yearly family photo card. It is always interesting to see how kids grow and get older (your gang included)… Believe it or not, we get family requests for photos of our dogs :)… In those cases, we have been just been slipping their photos inside the cards. In the past, we have also had two different sets of cards, for family and friends.

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Lindy Mint November 30, 2010 at 9:17 PM

Snowflakes – genius idea I must say. I need to write these things down.

We usually hit up the Santa arrival events at any of the local shopping centers, where there are usually free Christmas-related activities for the kiddos (and sometimes free treats too!)

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Sandy L December 1, 2010 at 3:50 AM

Lindy – there are a couple of good articles I just read on people doing an advent calendar of free activities, one for each day. (Making Xmas cookies, watching a Santa movie, decorating the tree, listening to xmas music, driving around looking at lights, etc.) If I were more organized, I’d like to do that and there’s no saying you can’t do the same things more than once, like watching different movies. Maybe I’ll expand on the idea.

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Molly On Money December 1, 2010 at 8:33 AM

Every year we spend a weekend making our home made gifts. We turn our house into a small factory and get the kids working (child labor laws do not apply in our house!). One year we made grocery bags, another time dream pillows, last year it was a cookbook. It’s a lot of work but fun.

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