Happy Fourth of July!!

HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY EVERYONE!! It seems so fitting that our very first Friday Favorites post would fall on a holiday. In our family holidays are one of our absolute favorite things.  The main reason Kellie and I enjoy holidays is because they give us a great opportunity to establish family traditions and we enjoy the familiarity of returning to them no matter what else is going on in our busy lives.  Some of our most lasting memories of the people we love stem from our family traditions.  Holidays also provide us with a wonderful opportunity to discuss values with our children, and they often afford us a chance to flex our creative muscles.  Here are handful of our favorite ways to celebrate on the Fourth!!

Quotation Conversation Starter

On the morning of a holiday, I often print out and hang up a quote that I can use to start a conversation about the holiday with my kids. This year I am going to use this one that Kellie made for me: 4th of July Kids Printable

Click here for your own copy to print: 4th of July Kids Printable

Possible conversation starters are:

  • A discussion of what our flag stands for
  • A review of the significance of the stars and stripes
  • Have a dialogue about what it means to be a part of one nation
  • A short brain-storming session on age-appropriate ways your family can contribute to our country. Possible ideas are; writing a letter to a solider, cleaning up a local park or beach or having a family history lesson

Printable Activities

Another thing we often do on holidays is print out a few activity sheets for the kids to do at some point during the day. We typically pull them out at the point that our hands are the most full (often during meal prep time). Kidsactivitiesblog.com is a site that we have found with great options. The link below will take you right to some fun sheets you can use: http://kidsactivitiesblog.com/54263/4th-of-july-free-activity-printables. We also like to find activities that make fun keepsakes. Here is an example of one we created:4th of July Poem-1 And here is a link to a blank version of the above image for you to print: Freedom Worksheet for Kids

Themed Treats

We enjoy celebrating with a themed treat! Scroll down for a post on a festive treat that Kellie made.

Reusable Decorations

We like making a craft with our children each holiday. We are fond of choosing projects that can be re-used year after year as decorations. Below we have posted age-appropriate crafts we did with our children this year that doubled as decorations. Thank you for letting us share this short round-up of our favorite ways to celebrate the Fourth!

 

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Patriotic Candle Holders Craft

These patriotic candle holders are a great craft to do with your family to get into the holiday spirit.  My kids really enjoyed making them and I am very excited that they turned out so pretty.  They are a colorful and fun addition to our patriotic decorations.DSCN4701My inspiration for this craft came from Ashley over at www.crunchyfrugalista.com.  I used her basic idea and revised just a few small things to make the craft our own. To begin this craft you need the following:DSCN4654

  •             Construction or scrapbook papers in red/white/blue
  •             Star hole punch
  •             Red and blue tinted Mod Podge
  •             Glass votive holders
  •             Paint brush

Notes on Supplies – I found all our supplies at Michaels. You could pick votives that all match, but each of my kids wanted theirs to be “their own” so they each picked two votives that matched, but all three sets had a different style. The square votives were the easiest to use. The round ones worked fine, you just need to work a bit harder to get the stars to stick.   If you are doing this craft with younger children I would recommend the square votives. Directions:

  1.  Using the paper punch, let each child punch a small pile of stars in different colors and patternsCandle3
  2.  Take two disposable cups and fill one with a small amount of red Mod Podge and the other with a small amount of blue
  3.  While holding a star on the votive use a paintbrush dipped in one of the Mod Podge colors to secure the star to the outside of the votive
  4. Continue placing stars on all sides of the votive in any arrangement you chooseCandle2
  5.  Once you have placed and secured all stars, coat the entire outside of the votive in Mod Podge.  You could coat the inside as well, though my children opted not to and they still turned out great.
  6.  Repeat the entire process using the other color Mod Podge
  7.  Allow to dry completely
  8.  Add a tea light candle and enjoy!Candle1

 

Handprint Flag Craft

Looking for a simple craft to do with your kids this 4th of July? Here is an easy and fun handprint flag for you! IMG_5220IMG_5218   Supplies Needed:

  • 5×7 size construction paper
  • Red/white/blue washable paint
  • Small paintbrushes
  • Hole punch
  • Ribbon
  • Star stickers
  • Large craft sticks
  • Double sided tape or glue (whichever you prefer)
  • Bowl of water for rinsing
  • Newspaper

 Directions:

  1. Lay out newspapers over the surface you will be doing the activity on to make cleanup easier
  2. Set out the paper, hole punch, ribbon, star stickers, paint, paintbrushes, and bowl filled with water
  3. Punch a small hole in the upper left hand corner of the flag
  4. Dip paintbrush in blue paint and paint the palm of your child’s hand
  5. Dip another paintbrush in white paint and paint every other finger white
  6. Dip another paintbrush in red paint and paint remaining fingers
  7. Assist child as they place their painted hand onto their paper: (Note – To make it look like a flag the handprint should be rotated so the blue palm is in the upper left hand corner…but as parents, sometimes we know kids craft with their own idea of how something should go, so my daughters’ flags are flying a little differently this year)
  8. Press down firmly on child’s palm and each finger to ensure the handprint shows up
  9. Have child pull their hand straight up so the paint doesn’t smear
  10. Allow the handprint to dry
  11. Once dry, pull ribbon colors of choice through the hole you punched on the flag and tie one small knot
  12. Have the child decorate the blue section of the flag with small star stickers
  13. Glue or tape the craft stick to the backside left edge of the paperIMG_5212IMG_5210IMG_5211IMG_5215

You now have both a festive flag for your child to enjoy waving around on the 4th and a keepsake decoration to display in years to come!IMG_5217