Tips and Ideas for Thanksgiving Crafting for Kids and Moms

My kids and I love crafting!

To me, crafting is about creating: not a final product! No such thing as a “Pinterest Fail” around here. The beauty is the process and sometimes, admittedly, the process is more beautiful than others.

If you and your family also love creating together, or if you are ready to dip a toe into the crafting waters with your toddler, I have a few tips and tricks to make life a bit easier:

Stay Stocked Up

I’m constantly grabbing crafting supplies from Dollar Tree whenever I need a trip there to buy cards or gift bags. They have seriously upped their game in the last 12-18 months with what they are offering in their craft aisle! Acrylic paint, wreath forms, wooden animals and bird houses, and lots of odds and ends like pipe cleaners, puff balls, beads, googly eyes, popsicle sticks, construction paper and more. Basically, it’s a survival kit for rainy days and long weekend mornings! 

If you’re not into dollar store shopping, just keep an eye open for these items where you regularly shop. 

If you prefer buying in bulk, you’ve got lots of online options.  I recommend these googly eyes from Amazon. At under $5, it’s going to be years before I have to purchase another googly eye. 

metal buckets full of crafting supplies

I keep all of our crafting supplies in a plastic tub in one of our kitchen cabinets. It’s handy and ready when inspiration strikes! 

Lower Your Expectations

Have you lowered them? Ok, I mean even lower. 

The biggest mistake I made when my eldest child was old enough to start making crafts {under 2} was underestimating mess and overestimating attention span and success. Don’t be me! 

Small children {under age 4, though it varies with each child} might only have five good minutes to spend on a craft. So keep it simple!

Likewise, consider ability. Projects that require lots of cutting can wear out those little hands. Some are best broken into two or three steps done at different times.

Don’t Get Overwhelmed: Make Memories!

Yeah, crafts get messy. I’ve done plenty over the years where the cleanup took longer than the amount of time my kids were interested in the project! But ultimately, the act of creating something is always worth it. It can be a source of pride, or when the project goes awry it can be a lesson in acceptance. 

I love the times we share pulling out paint or empty paper towel rolls and seeing what we can come up with.

It can be a little overwhelming to search for holiday craft ideas on Pinterest… there are just so many! And often I click a link only to realize the project is WAY too involved or the supplies needed are WAY too expensive. Here are a few of my favorite Thanksgiving and Fall craft ideas this year:

For Little Kids

I found SO many cute ideas on Pinterest for the Preschool and under set. Options for hand print and foot print based turkeys, glue projects and stamping seemed to rule the age four and younger ideas. Let your child’s ability and interest guide your choices! 

Also, this craft is adorable and a great idea for letter and name recognition for your preschooler, too. 

For Big Kids

My second grader really enjoyed making this Ornamental Corn {also called Indian Corn or Flint Corn}. We had the supplies on hand {pipe cleaners, plastic beads} and it took him about 15 minutes to sort the beads and string them. I helped him form them into the corn. Voila! Cute, easy, very minimal clean-up. 

Preschooler stringing beads on a pipe cleaner

Thanks for the idea and tutorial, One Little Project!  

For All Kids

If your kids have an age gap of more than a year or two, it can be a challenge to find crafts that entertain and engage everyone. My two love doing cut and glue projects with construction paper, so we came up with this turkey craft. It is also fun to see just how different the finished product is from two different children using the same exact materials. I love how projects like this showcase their personalities in subtle ways. 

I cut these feathers, beaks, gobblers {that’s a technical term I believe} and turkey bodies out. You can use a printable to do this too! 

turkey craft with colorful feathers

My children enjoyed using glue sticks and using the cut-out construction paper pieces like a personalized turkey puzzle. Of course, googly eyes complete the “look.” Simple, classic, and very low cost if you already have construction paper, glue sticks and googly eyes on hand! 

For Girls Night In 

I wanted to create something simple that I wouldn’t feel looked too “homemade” this fall, which is a challenge because I do not excel at making Martha Stewart worthy crafts! I found inspiration in these adorable embroidery hoop pumpkins.

I enlisted the help of my craftiest friend, a former event planner with an eye for decorating. I loved these fabrics I found at JoAnn and though I kind of failed to remember they needed stems {lol} these pumpkins are cute and mantle-worthy! 

For The Whole Family

This feels like a craft to start the first week of November and add on to up until Thanksgiving– so we are planning to do just that! I will draw a tree and my kids can color and add on the leaves as they think of each think they feel grateful for this Thanksgiving. I love the focus this activity brings to the reason we are celebrating this month!


I see versions of “Gratitude Turkey” centerpieces popping up for sale in my feeds lately, too. That could be something to DIY as well! It can be simple or as beautiful as this buyable turkey and feathers. 

This semi-homemade version is a nice compromise!

I hope this has inspired you to find a new way to get creative and crafting with your children this Thanksgiving! Whatever works for you and your family, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving full of love and gratitude.

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Mary B
Mary B. is a lifelong creative, dreamer, and joy seeker. Born and raised in northern Illinois, Mary attended the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, receiving her B.F.A. in acting, then worked as a sometimes actress/model, sometimes waitress. Mary and her husband got married in Sept 2012, welcomed a son in 2014, moved to Texas from Chicago in 2016, and welcomed a daughter in 2017, completing their family. She self-publishes her musings on marriage, motherhood, and life on her blog, Accidentally Texan,. In her free time {free time--ha!} Mary loves to read, cook {and eat ;)}, work out, swim, travel, and spend time with her family. Mary believes emotional connection is the root of humanity and our collective purpose in life.


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