Easy-to-make stocking stuffers

Four homemade stocking stuffers kids can make

Emergency Stash

Ages: 4 and up (with help)

You’ll need:
• An empty paper towel tube
• A selection of pens or pencils
• 2 ping pong balls
• Wrapping paper
• Ribbon
• Tape
• Scissors

1. Pick out mom or dad’s favourite pens or pencils at the stationery store.

2. Insert a ping pong ball into one end of the tube. Tape into place. Drop the pens/pencils inside. Repeat on other end. Cut a large rectangular piece of wrapping paper, with slack on both ends, and use a piece of tape to secure one long side to the centre of the tube. Roll the paper around the tube and tape in place.

3. Cut two long lengths of ribbon. Tie each side, to look like a holiday cracker. With the scissors, shred the paper on either side by cutting towards the centre in strips. Curl the ribbon, if you like.

*You can use this technique for any small gifts – grandma’s favourite tea bags, grandpa’s favourite candies, etc.

Handmade Seed Packets

Ages: 4 and up (with help)

You’ll need:
• Medium-weight cardstock
• Crayons/markers
• Strong roll-on glue
• Scissors
• A selection of hardware store seeds (pre-packaged or bulk is fine)

1. On the cardstock, follow the pattern seen in the picture, keeping in mind the size of envelope you’d like to make. Cut out. Repeat with three or four other sheets of paper (depending on the number of seed varieties you have). Fold the tabs in toward the centre to form and envelope and flip over.

2. With a little help, read what each different seed needs to grow (i.e. how much shade, how much sunlight, how much water, etc.) and draw pictures to illustrate. Don’t forget to include a picture of the end result – flowers or veggies!

3. Apply glue to the edges but be careful not to get glue on the inside of the envelope. Press the edges down to secure. Allow to fully dry.

4. When completely dry, use a spoon to scoop the correct seeds into each packet. Seal with another line or two of glue. Allow to dry before placing into the gift recipient’s stocking.

Sports Card Collectible

Ages: 5 and up (with help)

You’ll need:
• A sports magazine with a heavy cover
• A black permanent marker
• A ruler
• Scissors
• Strong roll-on glue
• A couple of packages of sports cards
• Bubblegum
• Ribbon

1. Carefully tear the front and back covers off of the magazine. Flip it over, place the packet of cards in the centre of the cover and use a ruler to draw a square around the cards. Cut the square out.

2. With your marker, duplicate the lines indicated in the template. Cut the dotted lines and fold the solid ones. Repeat with back cover. Glue the tabs, so you get both the bottom and lid of a small box. Allow to dry fully.

3. Place the cards in the box and include a few pieces of bubblegum. Put the lid on the box and tie securely with ribbon.

Chocolate Coffee Spoons

Ages: 5 and up (with help)

You’ll need:
• A bar of premium milk or dark chocolate (the higher the cocoa percentage, the better)
• A finely-crushed Skor bar (optional)
• A good quality pot
• Plastic spoons
• Waxed paper
• Clear plastic bags
• Ribbon

1. With help, melt the chocolate in a pot on very low heat, stirring frequently.

2. When chocolate is smooth, dip the bottom of each spoon into the chocolate to coat and place neatly on to the wax paper. Allow chocolate to harden. If you’d like, dip the spoon into a bowl of crushed Skor before placing on the waxed paper.

3. When you’ve finished all of the spoons, spoon the leftover chocolate into a container for later use. It can be softened in the microwave. If you plan to do more dipping, you can allow it to harden in the pot to re-melt later.

4. Place two or three spoons into a plastic bag, allowing the handles to stick out. Tie the bag with ribbon. If you’d like, attach a tag instructing the gift recipient to stir their holiday coffee or tea with the chocolate spoon for a special treat!