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Use nature to make great gifts

SAFETY FIRST: Ask an adult to help with tools you haven't used before.

Mother’s Day is coming up. Show your mom just how great she is by making her a gift inspired by Mother Nature herself! Topped off with a homemade card, it will be a present Mom will never forget.


THE GIFT THAT KEEPS ON GIVING

This promise tree can also become an instant jewelry hanger.

1. Find a branch with plenty of twigs. You can paint it or leave it natural.

2. Stand up the branch in a container and stabilize it with pebbles or clay.

3. Cut shapes from paper and write special coupons for your mom.

4. For surprise coupons, you can roll up squares of paper.

5. Attach them to the branch with colorful bits of yarn. And no griping when she uses them!


COASTING

Make a set of coasters for mom’s drinking glasses or mugs.

1. Trace a circle slightly larger than the base of a cup.

2. Place leaves and flowers between two pieces of clear contact paper. For an added touch, glue felt to the bottom of each coaster.

3. Press the contact paper and felt together before cutting.

4. Cut out the circle (or other shape).


FLOWER POWER

Want flowers for Mom to last as long as possible? Turn them into a place mat.

1. You’ll need two pieces of clear contact paper big enough for a table setting. With the backing pulled off, arrange petals, leaves and flattened flowers on the sticky side of one piece.

2. Carefully lay the second sheet, sticky side down, over your design. (An extra pair of hands can help.) Bending and placing the contact paper as shown will help avoid wrinkles and bubbles.

3. Trim the edges to make a fancy border.

4. The colors of the flowers will fade, but their beauty won’t.


MOMS ROCK!

Turn a rock into a pendant your mother will love.

1. Wrap a piece of yarn or embroidery floss around the rock every which way.

2. Tie the ends together at one side, then make a double knot a little farther up to create a loop.

3. Coat the rock and yarn with white liquid glue.

4. Keep it on a piece of wax paper until the glue dries clear.


POETRY TO HER EARS

Make your mom a set of poetry pebbles to play with.

1. Find at least 20 smooth pebbles similar in size.

2. With a permanent marker, write a single word on each one.

3. Choose words you think she would like, using a mix of nouns, verbs, adjectives, pronouns and prepositions.


CATCH SOME RAYS …

… and Mom’s attention with a dazzling sun catcher that’s easy to make.

1. Cover your work area with newspaper, then sandwich flowers and leaves between two pieces of wax paper.

2. Tuck some glitter and colorful crayon shavings inside, too.

3. With adult supervision, cover with a layer of newspaper, then run an iron set on low over the sun catcher to seal it.

4. The sun catcher can be cut into any shape you wish.

5. Punch a hole at the top and add a loop of yarn so it will be ready to hang.


DON’T SPILL THE BEANS!

Make a secret hiding place for Mom’s treasures. You’ll need a glass jar with a lid, a piece of cardboard, a cardboard tube and some dried beans.

1. Cut a circular cardboard base that is smaller than the bottom of your glass jar.

2. Cut the tube so it is slightly shorter than the jar, and glue it to the cardboard base.

3. Plug the tube with paper before filling the jar with beans.

4. Stand the tube and base inside the jar. Pour dried beans all around it, right up to the top. Remove the paper to unplug the tube.

5. This hiding place is so good, you might want to make one for yourself.


NUTTY PICTURES

Here’s a photo case Mom will be nuts about.

1. Find a large, symmetrical walnut.

2. Ask an adult to split a walnut shell in half.

3. Trim photos to fit on each rim.

4. Glue them into place.

5. When the glue has dried, put the two walnut halves back together and glue a scrap of felt across them to make a hinge.


Submit a Photo of Your Project

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31 Comments on Use nature to make great gifts

  1. OK ANSWER/BURGER BOY // May 3, 2012 at 9:31 am //

    I like these ideas. I might do the rock one with seaglass. I dont know about the safe though.:)😛😀😆

  2. NINJ11202 // February 6, 2012 at 1:11 pm //

    awesome!

  3. scuba diving mama // September 13, 2011 at 7:59 am //

    For the MOMS ROCK project how about using sea glass!!

  4. tsering dhundup // January 16, 2011 at 12:48 am //

    I realy like the photo case thing (Even though my mom is allergic to ALL nuts) and the secret safe thing too.
    The boys will enjoy making these for mom

  5. neat and cool

  6. Crafter // July 2, 2010 at 9:25 pm //

    my mom will love them

  7. This is a great idea of doing this project.

  8. oreo-95 // May 28, 2010 at 9:59 pm //

    In my opinion I think these are great ways to go green and great gifts for mothers too

  9. Great idea!

  10. secret agent // May 7, 2010 at 7:39 pm //

    awsome

    • its realy intersting for me that there is mother day in other countries except iran

  11. cubmom // May 6, 2010 at 8:22 pm //

    I would
    love any one of these for Mothers Day!!

  12. bannana boy // April 22, 2010 at 6:31 pm //

    Does anyone know where I can find a walnut?

    • autumnforest // May 6, 2010 at 10:44 am //

      You can usually find whole walnuts at grocery stores, more likely during the Christmas holiday shopping season, but you might find some now.

  13. superscout // April 19, 2009 at 5:47 pm //

    I really like the power flower thing * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

  14. spyscout123 // April 2, 2009 at 11:14 am //

    Do you think I could combine them

  15. I like the project!

  16. Also, are these any good for christmas presents?

  17. That secret safe thing would be the perfect way to hide things from my brother, but could I use some thing besides dried beans…..

    • chessmaster // May 7, 2010 at 4:27 pm //

      Such as candy?

    • scuba diving mama // September 13, 2011 at 7:58 am //

      How about using stones, or shells for kids to hide things from their siblings in thier bedroom!! Mom can use elbow macaroni, dad could use pennies/loose change, or nuts and bolts!!

  18. I realy like the photo case thing (Even though my mom is allergic to ALL nuts) and the secret safe thing too.

  19. good idea!!!!!!!!

  20. CoolDude // June 28, 2008 at 6:28 am //

    Nice ideas!!! These will be great for Mother’s Day!!!!!

  21. these are great

  22. its awsome

  23. i love the ideas!!!!

  24. flag_football // May 7, 2008 at 8:16 am //

    interesting……

  25. Scoutdad // May 5, 2008 at 8:18 pm //

    Neat ideas! The boys will enjoy making these for mom. Thank you..

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