Last Minute Thanksgiving Printables

Post by Christina of Christina Williams Blog
Thanksgiving PrintablesOne of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving is creating a fun kids’ table. This year, though, Thanksgiving really snuck up on me. I’m not nearly as prepared as I would like to be, so I created an easy Thanksgiving printable place mat concept that can be done at the last minute. And I decorated using toys and decorations from Nod that are usually in my kids’ rooms and playroom. Take a look around and see what you’ve got handy that might work to make a fun kids’ table for Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving Printables - PlacecardsKids Table Thanksgiving PrintablesThanksgiving Printables 4Thanksgiving Printables 6Thanksgiving Printables 7Thanksgiving Printables 8 I started by covering the table with a roll of kraft paper. It’s nice and thick, so it will hold up to whatever the kids can dish out, plus they can draw on it. Then I created some printable “modular” place mats. The last thing I need right now is one more errand, so these place mats needed to be something I could do at home without running to the copy center for a large print. I made a variety of activities that work for a range of ages–everything from simple coloring activities to scrambled words and the good ol’ fashioned thankful list for older kids. I even threw in a couple silly jokes for good measure.

So just hop over to my blog and download the printables. Then let the kids choose the activities they want, cut them out and tape them to the table cover. I used Nod’s Archery Garland, as a table runner, and the I Could’ve Bin an Art Caddy to hold utensils and crayons.

The Junior Lumberjack blocks, though, really steal the show. They’re my favorite part of the table. They’re measured to specific thicknesses and heights, so building with them is super easy. My kids play with them every day, and it’s fun to see all the imaginative things they build with them. I created little place card stands out of the blocks, and I figured the kids will probably want to build with them while they’re waiting for the food…so these block are a triple win in my book: fun, functional, and adorable!

There you have it! Raid your kids’ rooms, and your craft stash for decorations, print out my modular place mat activities, and you’re all set. Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!

Christina Williams is a blogger and graphic designer living in Salt Lake City, Utah. She’s a night owl and a bookworm, as well as a mother to three children ranging in age from two to eight. She shares her latest DIY and design projects along with her adventures in parenting on self-named blog, Christina Williams.

Kids Holiday Gift Wishlists From Our Friends at Little List

From our friends at Little List

Your kiddos have been dreaming about their holiday lists since the catalogs started pouring in months ago. Which is adorable, but can be very stressful for us parents when it comes to actually buying the gifts! How do you weed through the millions of things on their wishlists to make sure their faces light up when opening gifts?

Enter Little List. Little List makes it easy and fun to create and share a wishlist of the gifts your children want and need. Parents can add anything from any online store to one list and share it anytime someone asks “what should I get your child?” Best of all it keeps track of who bought what, as well as your child’s current sizes and interests.

The app even makes gift suggestions based on your child’s age and preferences. You can visit Little List’s website, or download the app for your iPhone and begin building their holiday wishlists today.

Best Gifts for Kids - LittleList

We’ve created 3 Little List gift guides for kiddos that love imaginary play, creating art & music, and enjoying nostalgic toys we played with as kids.

  • Imagination in Play – For little ones who let their imagination run wild and love playing dress up, making pretend meals or entertaining a captive audience.
  • Crafts & Music – Family jam session under the tree? Budding Picasso? Architect in the making?
  • Classic Retro Toys – Nothing’s more fun than seeing our kids play with and love the same toys we enjoyed as kids!

Best Gifts for Kids - LittleList  1

Post by Little List, makers of wishlists for kids. Keep track of your children’s wants and needs in an easy to use platform to share with friends and family, or simply help you organize your shopping list for the holiday or your children’s birthday.

Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for the Kids

Written by Nick & Aleah Valley of Valley & Co.

The holiday season means gatherings galore and traditions, old and new. It’s about getting together around a table to share in a delicious meal, laughter and great company. Thanksgiving often involves a kids’ table, a space where cousins and siblings collect to eat and visit.

We say dress up the kids’ table so they feel extra special and have a place that looks fun, is cozy, has activities, and is one that they won’t want to leave. Why not pull out all of the stops and let them enjoy sparkling cider from beautiful goblets, dine on festive china and be dazzled by a centerpiece that rivals that on the adult table?

Valley & Co.’s Thanksgiving Tips:

Elevate the kids’ table this Thanksgiving with dressy china and napkins tied with ribbon. Don’t have festive dinnerware? Look to your local rental company to rent flatware, glasses and dishes. Create a centerpiece with moss, branches and pine cones and nestle in little woodland creatures the kids can play with during dinner.

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Upgrade the classic Tic-Tac-Toe game by painting your own squares with metallic paint on a white linen napkin {we just used plain old tape to make a grid and a foam brush to paint squares}, and give the children pine cones and creature figurines as their game pieces.

Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 10 Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 7Leave messages for the kids on their place settings that tell them how thankful you are for them.

Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 8 Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 11Hand draw Thanksgiving bounty {or download our PDF Coloring Sheet} and make up photo copies so each kid has their own coloring page to doodle on during dinner.

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Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 18Have small canning jars filled with moss, acorns, pine cones, and woodland creature figurines that the children can use to create their own little terrariums to take home.

Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 16 Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 2 Thanksgiving Entertaining Tips for Kids - 1What fun do you have planned for Thanksgiving?

Nick & Aleah Valley are the husband + wife owners and operators of Valley & Co. Lifestyle, based in the beautiful Emerald City {Seattle}. They love to make life grand and believe that any occasion, whether small or large, is cause for celebration. They believe that entertaining at home welcomes memories and laughter. Follow them on their blog and Instagram.

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough

Written by Kelsey Nixon of Kelsey’s Essentials

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play DoughMaking homemade play dough is the perfect way to blend cooking and crafting at home with your littles. My 2 year old Oliver has recently fallen in love with play dough thanks to preschool and has been requesting that we make batches together at home. It makes my heart flutter any time he asks to be in the kitchen with his mama and we’ve had such a great time making this foolproof pumpkin spiced homemade play dough recipe together. Going beyond adding a food coloring to the dough, we’ve started adding spices or extracts so that it not only looks colorful and vibrant, but it also smells fantastic!

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough 1With Thanksgiving right around the corner we added pumpkin pie spice and orange food coloring to our mixture to get in the spirit of the holiday. My Ollie can’t get enough of molding pumpkin pie slices, turkeys, and pumpkins out of our dough. We also like to pull out cookie cutters and a few safe kitchen tools to let his imagination run wild.

If you’re looking for a kid friendly cooking craft to entertain the kiddos this week, consider this simple and fun activity and don’t forget that you can file this recipe away and add different spices, extracts, and colors to customize your homemade play dough for any month of the year. Check out the recipe below:

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spiced Play Dough

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • orange food coloring

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough Ingredients Directions

Heat the water and salt over your stove or in your microwave it until boiling and the salt has dissolved.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, cream of tartar, and pumpkin pie spice and mix until combined. Mix in the vegetable oil.

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough  3Working carefully, add the orange food coloring to the boiling water then slowly pour the water into the mixer while it’s running. (be sure to help your littles with this step) Mix until fully combined and the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.

Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough - 4 Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough - 5Pumpkin Spiced Homemade Play Dough - Pie SlicesKelsey Nixon  is the host of Kelsey’s Essentials on Cooking Channel and author of Kitchen Confidence. Kelsey’s Essentials is also currently airing Mon-Thurs at 3pm on Food Network. Kelsey, her husband Robby, and son Oliver (“Ollie”) live in New York City. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving

Written by Selena of How About Cookie

Kid-Friendly ThanksgivingBetween the big feast, luscious desserts, and tons of time with friends and family, Thanksgiving has kid-friendly written all over it. Here’s a way to make it a kid-friendly Thanksgiving; invite your littles into the kitchen and make some easy, fun food art together.

Turkey Plate

This turkey plate is a great way to get them snacking on veggies. I used this adorable Thanksgiving Cupcake Kit to bake muffins, the centerpiece of this food art. You’ll need 4-5 rainbow carrots, white chocolate chips and mini chocolate chips (or store-bought candy eyes), and your favorite muffin or cupcake recipe. I used this Best Ever Pumpkin Muffin recipe—hard to beat a name like that.

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 1Start by peeling your carrots and slicing them in half, lengthwise. Trim them all to the same length, then slice the sides so they taper to a pointy tip. Arrange alternating colors on a plate as turkey feathers—this is when even the smallest of hands can help.

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 2Now for the eyes: Warm a small saucepan over high heat for a few seconds, then turn off the heat. Hold a mini chocolate chip, point down, just enough to melt the tip; stick it on your white chocolate chip and let cool. Repeat to make a second eye. Gently push these into your muffin. Cut a small triangle from a carrot scrap to make the beak, and if you’re feeling extra crafty, use kitchen scissors on an apple peel to cut a wattle, i.e. that red hanging thing. (Thanks, Google!) Balance the muffin on top of the carrots.

Turkey Leg

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 3This turkey leg plate is inspired by the clever Pull Apart Poultry toy. All you need is a red pear and string cheese. Cut your pear in half; set aside. Cut a piece of string cheese about 1/3 the length, then cut two more short pieces—each the height of your first. Have your child use a round measuring spoon (1/2 teaspoon-sized or smaller works best) to carve away the bottom corners of your long string cheese. Ask them to assemble the “turkey meat” and “bone”. Done!Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 5

Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 6Kid-Friendly Thanksgiving - 7Happy Turkey Day, and have fun playing with your food!

Selena Kohng is a mother of three and gets way too excited about kids’ products and good design. She posts fun food art, bento meal ideas, and general crafty things on her Instagram account and on her blog, How About Cookie.

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream For An Ice Cream Truck Playhouse!

Written by Michelle of Avery & Augustine

Ice Cream Truck Kids PlayhouseWith the cold weather encroaching and your kids still pining for summer’s frozen treats, this ice cream truck kids playhouse is just the ticket.  Its cheery color palette and vintage flair will brighten up any gray day, and the truck is finished off with the cutest handmade embroidered and patchwork details.  Some of our favorite features are the windows and awnings, and naturally, Avery and Nate love leaning out the window to take a customer’s order.

After a morning of selling their freezy dream treats, Avery and Nate eagerly noshed on ice cream sandwiches from Coolhaus, a local business which had its beginnings as a modern-day ice cream truck roaming the streets of LA.  No matter how cold it gets, something tells me Avery and Nate will have ice cream on their minds all winter long!

Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 2Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 3Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 4

Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 5Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 6Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 7Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 8Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 9Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 10Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 11Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 12Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 13Ice Cream Truck Kids Playhouse 14You can see Michelle’s work and read about her two young children and their first forays in cooking, art and everything in between at Avery and Augustine.

Snow Day Salvation

Post by Danielle Kurtz, Creative Director at The Land of Nod

If you know me, it’s no secret that I really, really, really do not like the winter. As far as I’m concerned there’s really no good reason to be outside once it’s cold and snowy. This poses a problem living here in Chicago, since it seems like it’s winter about 90% of the year. While I’m exaggerating a touch, it really does feel that way, mostly because I live in a tiny house, which I love, with my super fantastic family, whom I adore, but after weeks on end of arctic temperatures and inches upon inches of snow, we all go a little stir crazy.

Which leads me to this, my list of must-have-snow-day-salvation-kid-occupying-so-you-can-read-a-magazine-do-the-dishes-or-just-stop-hearing-the-words-I’m-bored, toys. In other words, great kids snow day activities (or rainy day kids activities, if you’re fortunate enough to live somewhere warm) to keep the kids and their imaginations active without 6 layers of clothes.

Keep the kids active

Kids Snow Day Activities - GamesOne big issue with being cooped up all winter is all that excess energy to burn off. Our doorway bean bag toss is a great way to kill some time, and get a bit of a work out. And, why not swap your hallway runner for a hopscotch mat this winter? Both are games that can be played alone or with as many willing players as you have.

Give their imaginations a workout

Kids Snow Day Activities - ImaginationOur doorway puppet theater and our What’s that Stand For can both keep the kids occupied for quite a while. They can write a story for their play, make tickets, playbills, posters and then there’s the performance. And, the What’s That Stand For can be a market, a lemonade stand, a puppet theater or whatever else they can come up with that day. For the market, they can create price tags and setup a whole shop, and then open it to the public (your family) for some shopping. Both of these toys are a great catalyst to getting their imaginations working overtime.

Encourage solo play

Kids Snow Day Activities - Imagination 2With a playset like our Cottage Dollhouse or Noddingham Castle, kids can play on their own for quite a while. This will encourage them to use their imaginations and get lost in the incredible little worlds they’ll create. My daughter has this dollhouse and spends countless hours decorating and re-decorating, and every toy under 4” lives in her dollhouse from time to time!

Encourage role playing

Kids Snow Day Activities - PlayIn addition to playing in their imaginary worlds, kids also very much want to do what they see their parents doing. That makes role-playing toys perfect. While you’re trying to finish the latest DIY project, keep your little busy with her own workbench. And, if you’re trying to get the baby to take a nap, encourage your son or daughter to put their baby doll down for a nap, too.

Activities for babies

Kids Snow Day Activities - BabiesSpeaking of babies, they can benefit from some exercise, too. A baby gym is the perfect way to entertain your little one while you fix breakfast or fold laundry.

Inspire your budding artist

Kids Snow Day Activities - Arts & CraftsAnd, last, but certainly not least, my absolute favorite way to pass the time during the winter is a good ol’ fashion arts and crafts project. An easel is a great start, but in general, keep lots of craft supplies on hand (glue, pom poms, construction paper, pipe cleaners, paints), put down a drop cloth and let the kids go to town. You’ll be amazed by what they’ll create.

I hope this list helps you and your families not just survive, but actually enjoy the winter months. I know I’m inspired to try to love winter a bit more. Bring on the snow!

By Danielle Kurtz. Danielle is the Creative Director at Nod and an over-protective mother of two. She’s also completely obsessed with Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and her Kindle, but not necessarily in that order. Danielle loves to craft, sew and crochet. Her current craft of choice is weaving tiny wall tapestries.

Shop The Land of Nod for Baby & Kids Toys & Gifts

Holiday Trend – Into the Wild

Post by Anna Passadori, Nod’s resident trend expert

This holiday trend was inspired by firewood – the art of cutting, gathering and storing logs can be so beautiful.

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The textiles of the holiday season make me want to stay inside all day! I could live in stacks and stacks of wool and flannel.

Holiday Trend - Into the Wild Textiles 1 | 2

But mostly this trend was inspired by nature and all the amazing creatures that live within it.

Holiday Trends - Into the Wild - Animals1 | 2 | 3

Here are some of our products inspired by the Into the Wild trend!

Land of Nod Holiday Trend - Into the WildFox Stocking / Bear Stocking / Owl Stocking / Faux Fur Trapper Hat / Teepee Ornament / Canoe Ornament / Snuggle In Sleeping Bag / Deer Ornament / Flannel Forest Pillowcase / Bear Little Lodge Ornament / Moose Little Lodge Ornament / Raccoon Little Lodge Ornament /Peace on Earth Advent Calendar / Fox Stocking Holder

Anna develops and designs exclusive product for The Land of Nod. She hails from the west coast and has traveled the world to source product. She loves anything Marc Jacobs, Sofia Coppola or stripes! (So, if anyone can get a photo of Sofia Coppola wearing a striped outfit by Marc Jacobs, please send it along.)

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs

Written by Kacia of Coconut Robot

DIY Glitter Holiday MugsI don’t know about you, but the time from Halloween to Christmas seems to just fly by.  I find myself thinking that I have plenty of time for DIY gifts and decor projects….only to blink and have December holidays upon us!

I wanted to make gifts for Harlow’s preschool teachers this year, but I knew that if I kept saying “Oh, I’ll do it when we are closer to Christmas break” would leave me running out to buy a gift card the last morning of school before break.

Can I get an amen?

So one chilly morning, Harlow and I got our crafting on and made these DIY glitter holiday mugs for her teachers!  We will be filling them with chocolates and gift cards and some artwork from Harlow as well!  I’m seriously ecstatic about how they turned out!

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 2If you’ve followed any of my DIY projects and tutorials, you know that I like to push the boundaries of how materials are traditionally used.  Enter iron-on glitter vinyl and ceramic mugs!  I did some tests and found that ironing the vinyl right on to a ceramic mug….works!  And it stays!  I haven’t had the guts to put mine through the dishwasher, but after hand-washing and air-drying, they are still looking amazing!

How did we make them?  Let me show you!

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 3DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 4I purchased these mugs from Amazon — they are both microwave and oven safe.*  I then had some glitter iron-on vinyl scraps left over from another project. (similar)

I have an at home vinyl cutting machine that I used to cut out the vinyl for my mugs, but if you don’t have one? Don’t fret!  I have a bunch of options and ideas for you!

I love iron-on vinyl, because it’s easy to use and apply.  Unlike adhesive vinyl, you don’t need an additional transfer sheet to apply the vinyl.  Just cut, iron and peel away the clear backing.

  • Free hand cut with a scissor.  If you choose this option, you will cut through both the vinyl and the plastic backing.  The matte side will be the side adhering to your mug and the plastic side will peel away. Keep this in mind as you are cutting letters and shapes, so that they don’t end up backwards!  :)
  • Free hand with a craft knife.  Lightly draw a design on the matte side of your vinyl.  Using a small craft, cut through the vinyl.  You won’t have to press very hard — don’t try to cut through the plastic backing as well, it’s best if that is kept in contact.  Weed away the excess vinyl, leaving only your design on the backing.
  • Use a paper punch.  Select holiday paper punches and cut out your designs.  If your plastic backing is too thick to cut, be sure to put the vinyl side closest to the blade — as long as you cut through the vinyl, don’t worry about cutting through the backing too!

There are so many ways to use iron-on vinyl for these mugs!  You could do something as simple as polka dots or stripes — both would be easy with a pair of scissors or a paper punch!

*I’m not entirely sure that it’s necessary that they are, but areas of the mug did get pretty hot as I was ironing!

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 5After you’ve cut out your designs, you are ready to begin ironing!  If you were able to keep the plastic backing in place, your design will look like my “JOY JOY JOY” pieces.  Remember to cut them out mirrored if cutting from the vinyl side! :)

If you are cutting through both the backing and your vinyl, your shapes will look like the snowflake pictured above.

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 6 DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 7 IDIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 8Assemble your vinyl and mugs and a small iron.  I love this mini iron, but any iron will work — just be careful!  The mug can get pretty hot as you work!

Harlow worked on her drawings, giving me direction on where to place each of the snowflakes and words for both of the mugs.

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 9DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 10DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 12DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 13Follow the instructions found on your iron-on vinyl.  I held my iron in place for at least 30 seconds on each letter.  I love using a craft iron, because I don’t worry as much about it getting gunk on it from these projects — if you are using a nice iron, I would use a thin piece of fabric between your iron and the backing.

I iron and let it cool before peeling back the transfer plastic.  When the edges are secured enough to remove, I remove the plastic and lightly iron on the vinyl to get it to stick really well. After it cools I check the edges to make sure I got every bit of the surface to adhere well to the mug!

DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 14DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 15DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 17DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 18DIY Glitter Holiday Mugs 19And that’s it!  Continue this process until you achieve your desired look!  Fill with candy or coffee or hot cider or soup or … well, you get the idea!

IMG_1582IMG_1593IMG_1607IMG_1602IMG_1610Kacia is a natural blonde, type-A and an artist: proof that God has a sense of humor.  Kacia writes Coconut Robot about her city-living family, motherhood, fashion, DIYs and really anything else that makes her smile.  She is a published quilt designer and loves dreaming up new projects and tutorials to share with her readers.  Addicted to coffee and Instagram. (@CoconutRobot)

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes

Written by Corri McFadden of Glitter & Bubbles

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving CupcakesIt’s time to gather up the family and embrace the season and spirit of Thanksgiving! I’m capturing the essence of the season by creating these charming Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes. You’ll need cake mix in your favorite flavor (and the ingredients listed on the box), white frosting , orange and yellow sprinkles, mini Reese’s peanut butter cups, and fudge stripes.

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes SuppliesFirst, prepare the cake mix according to the directions on the box. Line the cupcake tins with liners of your choice, festive or simple! Fill each liner about 2/3 full and bake according to the directions on your cake mix box. After the cupcakes have finished baking, let them cool for 10-15 minutes.

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes 2While the cupcakes cool, use frosting to “glue” a mini Reese’s peanut butter cup to the center of the bottom of a fudge stripe. Create your own frosting bag by using a plastic baggie and scooping a small amount of the white frosting into the bag, then snip small section off of the corner. Squeeze the frosting out of the hole and pipe around the base of the mini Reese’s cup to add the finishing touch on the hat.

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes 3After the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost each and add sprinkles to the tops. Place the pilgrim hat on the cupcake to your liking (we angled ours on the side!) With a season meant for being thankful, your friends and family will definitely be thankful for these delicious and festive treats!

Pilgrim Hat Thanksgiving Cupcakes 4Corri McFadden is the owner and founder of eDrop-Off Luxury Consignment.  As a Style Expert and successful blogger, she hosts a weekly fashion segment on Chicago’s “You and Me This Morning”, and features “Style Recipes”, videos and Fashion “Must Haves” on her self-titled lifestyle website Corri McFadden.  Most recently, she launched Glitter and Bubbles, a modern day moms guide for those looking for inspiration through fashion, food and décor.