Like most mamas, I don't have a ton of time to kill, so that's why I'm always up for quick DIY Thanksgiving decorations. I'm also all about multitasking. So when I find a DIY activity that also involves my kiddos, it's equivalent to a double word score in Scrabble.
Parents are busy people, and I'm nowhere near a Martha Stewart. If she saw my closets, she would faint. They're flooded with children's backpacks, outgrown clothes, and tiny shoes. However, I do consider myself a resourceful parent who's thrifty and loves kid-friendly crafts.
That's why I've put together a list of my favorite DIY Thanksgiving crafts and decorating ideas that are family friendly too. Check them out, and you'll have some fun conversation starters on turkey day.
1. Make some delicious Oreo turkeys
Who doesn't love Oreos? This decoration gives you an excuse to buy a bag. Oreo turkeys act as fun table decorations as well as tasty treats. They're simple, delicious, and kids and adults love them too.
They're also kid-friendly decorations for the table (while they last). I certainly prefer them over my grandma's six-foot ceramic cornucopia.
What you need:
A package of Oreos
A bag of candy corn
A bag of Mini Reese's
A box of Milk Duds
White frosting (which acts like glue)
Here are the steps:
- Put 5 candy corns upright into the creamy part of the Oreo. These will act as the turkey's feathers.
- Use the frosting to stick the mini Reese's to the bottom half of the Oreo. It acts as the stomach.
- Use the frosting to attach one Milk Dud above the Reese's. This acts as your gobbler's head.
- Cut an orange tip off of one piece of the candy corn.
- Use the frosting to attach it to the Milk Dud. This acts as the beak.
- Use the frosting to put dots on the Milk Dud. (Your little gobbler needs eyes.)
You'll have some awesome Oreo turkeys that you can create with your little one. Hopefully, they make it to the Thanksgiving table. If not, the process is still worth the family fun.
2. Teach gratefulness with thankful jars
Thankful jars are a sweet kid-friendly craft that can be made with the whole family. This Thanksgiving decoration even allows you to capture what you're grateful for in an autumn-themed jar.
What you need:
A mason jar
A hot glue gun
Fall decorations of your choice such as fake orange flowers, construction paper, fake pumpkins, etc.
Now it's time to decorate your jar! Although there are variations on how you choose to do so. Here are some steps to follow.
- Wrap the string rope around the jar and hot glue it down. Choose to wrap it around the whole jar or just part of it - up to you!
- Then you can hot glue gun your other decorations to the jar.
- Cut out squares with the paper.
- Have guests write down what they're grateful for on the cards then put them in the jar.
- Bust out and read the grateful notes during your delicious meal.
This is a fun DIY craft because it reminds us of all the things we're thankful for. Even though your kiddo might say he's grateful for PAW Patrols, the lesson is there.
3. Carve a pumpkin flower pots
My rascal loves pumpkins so much that he sleeps with them until they go out of season. So we end up buying quite a few. We love making our jack-o'-lanterns. You can also transform your pumpkin into a flower pot for some awesome family fun.
What you need:
A knife (don't worry, it's not for the child:))
Some flowers (real or fake)
This process is super simple:
- Cut off the top of the pumpkin like you would if you were making a jack o'lantern.
- Take all of the seeds out.
- Add some soil.
- Put flowers in.
Creating a pumpkin flower pot is an easy task for a toddler, but adults enjoy them too. This Thanksgiving decoration puts a twist on pumpkins and will turn some eyes. Plus, your little nugget will be happy to tell people that he/she helped make it.
4. Paint some thankful signs
If you have some old wood laying around, then you can easily make a thankful sign.
And if you don't, all you need is a square wooden piece that you can get from a local craft or hardware store. Why not show your gratefulness with a DIY sign that you might keep up all year?
What you need:
Wood for your sign. (It's your choice for the exact size and shape.)
Paint. I use orange because it's an autumn color, but you can use whatever you'd like.
Optional: If you're feeling ambitious, you could even get a glue gun and some fake leaves to add to your sign.
Here's the process (your kid can help out too, especially with the painting!)
- Pick a phrase or quote that relates to Thanksgiving. Some examples are be grateful, give thanks, we love turkey, you got the idea. But make sure the saying fits on your sign.
- Then get the stencils out and organize the letters based on your quote.
- Paint your message on the wooden sign. You can do it all in one color, various colors, etc.
You will have created a simple Thanksgiving craft that your guests will love. You can also make multiple signs and scatter them around your house. (Martha would be proud.)
Take pride in your DIY creations
DIY Thanksgiving decorations can be fun, simple, and cheap. You can even get your whole family involved. Your kiddos will have a blast crafting it up for the main event.
Plus, these crafts are quick and easy so that you can focus your energy on other things. Like turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, and football of course!