It’s the week after Easter and you’re probably in the throes of taking down your holiday decor. You lovingly box up all your wonderful pastel-colored door hangings, bunnies, and Easter grass, and then you realize that you have about three times more plastic eggs than you started the season with. That’s definitely how it went at my house.
Between Grandparents, community hunts, and our own backyard hunt, we had way more plastic eggs than I wanted to keep. I considered my options for a moment. Throw away? Donate? Pack away for next year? All of those options seemed less than desirable, so I set out to find some creative ways to reuse, or upcycle those eggs!
My thoughts turned to my fellow HowDoesShe writer, and friend, Cristi. I had seen her tutorial on egg shakers so I started there.
1. Simple music shakers.
I got out my supplies: plastic eggs, rice, and super glue. I let my four-year-old fill the eggs with a little rice, glued them shut, waited 15 minutes, and let him shake. Then the six-year old wanted in on the action, so we cranked the tunes and did some music shaking.
After we had shaken ourselves and the eggs, we moved to project number two.
2: Caterpillars and snakes.
Supplies: Pipe cleaners and plastic eggs.
Most plastic Easter eggs have two holes in the top and bottom halves. I let my four-year-old pick the colors he wanted, using eight to ten eggs, and then he chose two pipe cleaners.
I started the first egg for him, and then he threaded the rest one at a time.
This was a great way to work on his finger dexterity, color pattern, and PATIENCE! Some holes were small and I used the pointy end of my scissors to open them up a bit. Once all of the eggs were threaded, we topped the last one and twisted the remaining ends into antennae. I then added eyes with a black sharpie and we were done!
We ended up with a colorful caterpillar, so we decided to make a smaller, girly version, as well as a snake. After all that fun it was time for the last project and some brain work.
3: Memory game.
I chose six eggs of similar color, you can adjust the number off eggs appropriate for your child.
Then I found six pairs of small objects to put under the eggs. This was a little harder than I thought it was going to be, but I elicited the help of my four-year-old and he found some rocks and Legos, which worked perfectly.
We played the game over and over, taking turns uncovering two item at a time. My boys both loved it!
We did all of these activities in one afternoon, but we put the memory game and the egg shakers away for another time, and the boys are still carrying around their snakes and caterpillars. I felt good about reusing what I already had, and we had some fun on a gloomy afternoon!