In between fighting the Monster, I've been doing some things with the kids. Here's an old, old craft that Dad did with me when I was little - popsicle stick baskets.
It was, apart from being very therapeutic, an extremely kid-friendly craft because it involved harmless old white glue. You can customize them to any size and shape you like, as long as they have an even number of sides.
The alternating layers of popsicle sticks create a pattern of gaps, which accounts for its basket-ness.
To make them, you'll need a base in the shape you want (we used corrugated cardboard), popsicle sticks, and white glue.
Here's how to make the octagonal basket.
First cut out an octagon out of corrugated cardboard, so that each side is about the same length or a little shorter (not longer!) than the popsicle sticks you are using.
Next, glue popsicle sticks on alternate sides of the octagon to form the first layer.
Then apply glue on the very ends of the popsicle sticks of the first layer, and press a second layer of popsicle sticks over the gaps in the first layer.
Continue gluing and laying alternate layers in a pattern as shown
until you attain the desired height. Allow sufficient time to dry firm.
This is Kate's basket - she used the mini sticks on a hexagon base.
Jenna made hers in rainbow-ish colors.
The alternating of colors really appealed to the part of her nature that loves order, patterns and organizing.
She used the regular popsicle sticks on a hexagon base.
So same shape, two sizes.
Easy! The girls easily found uses for them in their play kitchen/shop. You could turn yours into vases and pencil holders if you made them narrow and tall. Or make different sizes and layer them within each other. Or (as the girls begged me, but we were too lazy) punch holes in the base and twist wires to make handles. Or weave ribbons vertically through the gaps.
One more popsicle craft and then we're away for the weekend. See you tomorrow!