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DIY Easter Wreath

I had big plans for a brand new, fancy Easter wreath, but my busy schedule got in the way of my crafting desires.  So, to keep things simple, I altered my Spring wreath to make one that is perfect for Easter.

You can find the tutorial for my Spring wreath here.  

The only difference between the Spring wreath and the Easter wreath is: instead of adding a "spring" banner, I added a glittery "Happy Easter" sign from the dollar store.  

Pretty cute for $2, don't you think?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Easter Bunny Door

Check out the adorable Easter decorating project I did with my boys yesterday.  I love this easy, inexpensive, and fun Easter Bunny Door.

Isn't it sweet?

I used bristol bristol board for the ears, eyes, nose, whiskers and bow tie.  Then, I used painter's tape to attach all the pieces to the door and the space above the door.

Isn't the bow tie cute?  I used glue to attach pom poms for a 3D effect.  (Little ones will love helping with this part.)

Have you already decorated for Easter this year?  If not, this Easter Bunny Door is the perfect DIY home decor project to do with the kids this year.

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Alphabet Series - Letter G

This morning, my four year old and I had some fun with the letter G.  We made a guitar craft, and we did a little letter G printing practice.

My music loving boy loves this adorable craft made from recycled materials.

To make a tissue box guitar:

1)  Gather your supplies.  You'll need an empty tissue box, a strip of cardboard (from an old box), six buttons, six elastics, glue, a marker, and duct tape.

2)  Have the child draw strings on the neck of the guitar/strip of cardboard.  Then, have the child use white glue to decorate the top of the strip with buttons.

3)  Have the child wrap six elastics (of various sizes) around the tissue box.

4)  Attach the neck of the guitar to the tissue box with duct tape.

Cute, right?

After our craft, we did a little printing practice. If you want to practice printing the letter G with your little one, you can right-click on the picture below, save it to your computer, and print it.

We ended our crafting session with a little snack... because "G" is for goldfish, and all that crafting and printing can build up an appetite!

Next up, the letter "H".

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Top 10 LEGOLAND Tips

My family and I just returned from a fantastic vacation in Florida.  As part of our trip, we visited LEGOLAND for the first time, and today I am sharing my top 10 tips for a fun-filled day at LEGOLAND.

1)  Manage your expectations - LEGOLAND does not have the "magic" that the Disney Parks do, but it is a lot of fun, and my boys LOVED it.  If you have little ones between the ages of 4 and 10 (that like LEGO), you will not be disappointed by this park.

2)  Look for discounted tickets - If you plan ahead, you can get real discounts to LEGOLAND.  I purchased our tickets online at Costco, but you can also save by "picking a day" and ordering from the LEGOLAND website.  I also saw some "buy an adult ticket and get a child admission for free" offers online.

3)  Be aware of height restrictions - My tall four year old was able to ride most of the attractions at this park, but you should check ride requirements prior to visiting the park to avoid disappointment.

4)  Check the weather - Be aware that most of the rides and attractions at this park are outdoors. If there is rain, many rides and attractions will shut down, so plan accordingly.

5)  Buy a fun souvenir - They have fantastic LEGO souvenirs at this park.  My favorite was a "build your own mini figure" Christmas ornament that was only $5.99.  My boys will love hanging this on our Christmas tree.

6)  Start at the back of the park - Arrive early, and start at the back of the park (where the roller coasters are) in order to avoid line ups.

7)  Make a plan - There is a water skiing show, character meet and greets, a 4D movie, and other events that occur at specific times.  You should work these into your schedule if you don't want to miss them.

8)  Be prepared - Every trip to a park is better if you are prepared.  Make sure to pack everything you will need for the day.  We took a stroller, backpack, water, sandwiches, snacks, sunglasses, sun hats, sweaters, sneakers, sunscreen, and our camera.

9)  Dress for success - Before we went to the park, I purchased my boys $7 LEGO shirts from Walmart.  The shirts added to the excitement of the day, and my boys looked super-cute in the pictures.

10)  Bring LEGO mini-figures to trade - All the workers have LEGO mini-figures on their vests/name tags that they will trade with the park guests.  My boys loved trading their mini figures.

Have you ever been to LEGOLAND?  What tips would you offer to someone that has never been there?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Disclosure: I received two free tickets in exchange for my honest review of this park. As always, the opinions on this blog are 100% my own.

Egging the Neighbours (with a little help from Kinder)

One of our favorite Easter traditions is "egging" our neighbours.  In the past, we have shared homemade cookies (which you can read about here), but this year I thought it would be fun to use Kinder® eggs to surprise our friends.

We filled cellophane bags with eggs, added tags, and tied the bags with ribbons.  Then, my boys went out on a "secret" delivery mission.  Fun, right?

To download a copy of the 4X6 tag I designed... just right click on the photo below, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular photo. 

"Egging the neighbours" is one of our favorite Easter traditions, but we will also be celebrating by crafting, planting magic jelly beans, and going on an egg hunt.

My boys love hunting for eggs, and this year they will be searching for plastic eggs filled with surprises, Kinder® Eggs, and adorable plush toys from Kinder®.  In our house, the boys run around collecting as many Easter eggs as they can... and when they have finished, we dump everything into one pile and divide the goodies into three equal piles.  It's more fair, and prevents a lot of fighting and tears on Easter morning.  :-)

Kinder® will be part of our Easter egg hunt, and I am happy to say that they are sharing the joy with sick children too.  Kinder® has partnered with Children’s Miracle Network and will be providing 12 baskets to CMN hospitals. As well, Kinder® will be donating another $25,000 to help support this non-profit organization dedicated to saving and improving the lives of children by raising funds for children’s hospitals across North America.  Awesome, right?

Kinder® is also giving their Facebook fans a chance to win their own Easter basket kit. Kinder® will be giving away one basket each day to a lucky winner on April 8, 10 and 12.  So, don't forget to visit the Kinder® Canada Facebook page for your chance to win.

I am excited to go "egging" with my boys again this year.  Do you think your little ones would like this Easter tradition?  Happy Easter!

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Disclosure: I’m part of the Kinder® Mom program and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.

Easy Teacher Appreciation Gift {free printable}

I love teachers, and I think it is really important for my boys to let their teachers know they are appreciated.  So... today I am sharing a simple teacher appreciation gift that all teachers will love.

Everyone loves flowers... and this little note adds a simple touch of fun and originality.  To download the 4X6 tag I designed: right-click on the photo below, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular photo

You could also attach this adorable tag to a flower pen in a crayon vase.  You can find the tutorial for these fun projects here.

Don't you just love this simple teacher appreciation idea?  What is your favorite teacher gift to give?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Cowboy Fun

My boys love dressing up and using their imaginations... so a few weeks ago, we had a Cowboy Day.  These ideas would also be great for a simple DIY Cowboy Party.

We started by making some "Wanted" posters.  I used my computer to make simple posters using pictures of the boys.  If you were having a cowboy party, you could make posters using photos of all the party guests.

You can leave the posters "as is", or you an make them look older by ripping the edges, crumpling them up, dipping them in tea, and allowing them to dry completely.

We had some cowboy hats from the dollar store in our dress up box, but the boys wanted some cowboy belts, so we got creative with some old cereal boxes.

I cut out belts and buckles from a cereal box, and the boys used crayons and markers to decorate them.  I taped the pieces together, and added slits on the ends so that the boys could easily put the belts on themselves.

We had a great day... and seriously.... don't my boys make the cutest cowboys?

I think this would be a great theme for a simple DIY birthday party.  Doesn't everyone love pretending to be a cowboy?

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)
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