All of these activities can be done while staying on a strict budget!
When you’re a stay at home mom, it’s very easy sometimes to just find yourself spending slightly too much time in the living room with little ones occupied by the TV. I know I’ve caught myself sliding back into this habit as my due date approaches (less than a month to go!).
When I find this happening, I almost always look for some fine motor skills activity I can make for my toddler than will help her practice her fine motor skills (among other skills hidden in the activity), and (many times) busy her enough that I can actually get some things around the house done.
Here are some of the activities that we did this year. My daughter is 19 months old and did most of these easily after little instruction.
Spiders and Cling Wrap
Earlier in the month, we had made Halloween themed cupcakes, and I still had some dollar store spider cupcake picks left over. After covering a plastic bowl with cling wrap, I had my toddler poke the picks into the cling wrap. She enjoyed figuring out what happened when you tried from the different sides of the pick as well as seeing the holes in the wrap after she made them.
Eyeball Soup and Sorting
Several packs of dollar store plastic eyeballs, a cheap plastic cauldron, an old egg carton, and a spare cooking spoon created a simple and inexpensive stirring and sorting activity with a fun, spooky twist.
Googly Eyed Spider Hands
This one was a little more advanced and was my toddler’s first introduction to glue. Using some watercolor paper and a sharpie, I decorated the page with spider webs. Then, I painted black on my daughter’s hand and had her place it on the paper. She was fascinated by the color and feel of the paint on her hand. Once the paint was dry, I had her pick out the eyes she wanted, and I had her help me put glue on the back before putting them on the page.
As I said, this one was a little more advanced than she was used to, but it was a good challenge and experience for both of us as she learned more skills and about more materials.
Toilet Paper Pumpkins
This activity was actually my daughter’s first ever painting activity. We used different orange and purple paints with some chunky paint brushes that are easier for a toddler to maneuver, and painted some old toilet paper rolls that we had been collecting for this very purpose. Once they were dry, momma went ahead a painted some jack-o-lantern faces. Now we have a cute handmade Halloween decoration out of items we already had in the house.
This one was actually featured on our vlog here: