Confetti Launcher

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Well, we didn’t get to this one in time for New Years Eve, but there’s nothing wrong with having messy fun with leftover confetti just to fill a winter’s afternoon! Making the launcher will be a bit tough for the littlest hands, but Travis loved watching the assembly of it until it was time to make our confetti fly. Kids in elementary school on up can help with the entire process.

First, you’ll need two short cardboard tubes, such as toilet paper tubes. If they are the same size, cut one open and tape it so it is slightly narrower than the other.

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Cover both tubes in pretty decorative paper and set aside.

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Cut two slits along each side of the top of the wider tube, and thread through a rubber band. Stretch the ends of the rubber band around a jumbo craft stick.

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Trace the bottom of the narrower tube onto construction paper, and cut out the circle. Glue the paper to cover one opening of the tube.

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Now fit the narrow tube into the wider one, and glue the paper onto the craft stick. Let dry for at least one hour.

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Time to launch! Travis helped sprinkle in leftover New Years confetti.

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Little hands will likely need a grown-up’s help to pull the launcher back far enough, so I couldn’t capture a photo right in the middle of the action but…

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Confetti!

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We had to repeat over and over of course. We’ll definitely be making this for parties and celebrations to come!

Shredded Paper Snowman

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January is always a good time to clear out the old and make room for the new, and that goes for even mundane things like cleaning out old bills and files. All that paper means putting our shredder machine to good use, and the end result of all that shredding? A wintery snowman craft!

To make the snowmen, save any shredding scraps you have, and set them out in a bin or sheet of newspaper to contain the mess.

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You only need to press clumps of the shredded paper together with your hands and it will stick together, as all the pieces intertwine. Nothing wrong with a good old paper snowball fight at this stage, if your kids are so inclined!

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Once we had “snowballs” of various sizes, we stacked them into a snowman, gluing the layers together. Admittedly this was a little inexact – the balls looked more like lumps once glued, but the basic idea was there.

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We stuck in orange pipe cleaners as carrot noses, and I coiled black pipe cleaners to be top hats.

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Far more rewarding than this little craft, though, was Travis’s glee for all that shredded paper simply as a material.

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He played games with it for ages, pretending it was “grass clippings” (yes, we like to pretend we’re landscapers around here) and then happily cleaning it with his toy tools.

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What other fun uses can you think of for all that shredded paper? Please share in the comments! What a great way to recycle last year’s boring paperwork.