Sunday, April 5, 2009

Easter on a Bunny's Budget?

Easter is fast approaching, but that doesn’t mean you have to go broke. There are plenty of ways to celebrate this festive season. All it takes is a little imagination and a whole lot of fun.

First off remember…the Dollar Store is your best friend. From seasonal decorations, to fun little Easter trinkets for the kids, these inexpensive outlets have everything you could possibly need. However, if you don’t have a Dollar Store where you live, don’t despair, you can still make the season hip-hopping on a bunny’s budget. Here are a few tips...

One, don’t pay for Easter grass for the kid’s baskets, make your own. All it takes is a shredder and some colourful paper. If you don’t have a shredder, no biggie - use scissors. This method is also a good family fun project. Make a game of it. Let the kids choose their own colours and play “who can make the biggest pile.” To add a bit of glam and glitter, use coloured cello-paper or recycle bits of fabric, ribbon, string or tissue paper.

Another fun tradition is the colouring of Easter eggs. I still fondly remember those times with my mom. Sure you can buy these kits, but it’s just three simple steps to make your own.

1. Add 1 teaspoon of white vinegar to ½ cup of boiling water.
2. Add 20-30 drops of food colouring per half cup of water.
3. Stir and cool.

The kids are now ready to turn all those ordinary hard-boiled eggs into Easter Egg-travaganza’s. I don’t know about you, but I find the pretty coloured eggs always taste better.

Now that you have the filler and the eggs, why not make your own Easter baskets to put them in? Small recycled cookie, cracker or microwave popcorn boxes are perfect to make a fun, one-of-a-kind basket. For the one pictured, I used a soda cracker box cut in half, one sheet of scrap book paper, ribbon, stickers, two brads and a glue stick, (all from the Dollar Store).

Tip: Undo the bottom of the box so it’s flat. This makes it a lot easier for the little ones to work with.

Once they have it painted or papered, just simply reassemble the box with tape or glue then add an extra bit of paper or paint to the bottom. Let the kids decorate their own boxes any way they want. The possibilities are endless. Once finished, add the handmade Easter grass, some home-baked cookies and these make a wonderful gift for grandparents or friends. You can bet they will cherish it for years to come. That is, if you can get your tike to part with it.

Lastly, for an extra fun Easter morning try the Ribbon Maze. You’ll need about 25 yards of ribbon (curling or regular), one colour for each child. The night before Easter after the kids have gone to sleep, take one end of the ribbon and tie it to the basket. Now hide the basket where it can’t easily be seen and begin to wrap the ribbon in and around the furniture. After all the ribbon is used up, take the end and place a bead, plastic egg or even your child’s initial made from a sticker and secure it. Place this at your starting point, which could be a kitchen or dining room table, coffee table etc. Do this for each child intertwining the ribbon together. Be sure to have your camera ready to capture all the fun in the morning. Your kids are going to love the Ribbon Maze.

So you see…Easter doesn’t have to be expensive to be fun. With a bit of imagination you can create lastly memories and traditions for years to come.

Until next time...Sandie Lee

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