I know it’s not technically winter yet, but around here the last orange leaves surrendered their posts weeks ago. Nature doesn’t care how long you want the fall to last, it’s hell bent on delivering winter early with full gusto. Personally, I’ve moved past the complaining about the cold phase (why did I ever move to Canada?) to the part where I love seeing water drip off of icicles and watching the river slowly freeze over (why did I ever live anywhere else?)
Part of enjoying where you live is embracing the seasons in your neck of the woods. To get in the mood for all that dropping mercury, show your kids how beautiful ice can be with a collection of household items and some water.
For this craft, all you need is a few balloons, water from your tap and a few tea lights. If you have the battery operated kind of ‘candle’, that works even better. Just fill the balloon like it’s summer, but instead of soaking someone with it, set it on a baking tray and put it outside or in the freezer to firm up.
If you’re using real candles, just pop the balloon before it’s fully frozen and dump out the excess water in the middle, so you have a hollow opening for the candle to live in. If you’re using a battery operated light, you can dig a hole in the snow and set the fully frozen frost ball on top of it.
Via Design Mom
Colorful Salt Ice Sculptures
This craft depends entirely on salt’s weird ability to melt ice. Fill a milk carton or other disposable rectangular container with water and freeze it so you have yourself an ice block. Get some table salt (or better yet, Kosher salt) and some food coloring. Have your kids pour salt on the block and then dot it with food coloring, and watch the magic happen.
Via Kiwi Crate
Here’s another cool thing you can do with salt and ice:
Ice Cube Painting
For this colorful craft, fill a few bowls with water and add different colored food coloring to each one. Fill up an ice cube tray with the different colors, and stick outside in the cold (if it’s below freezing) or in the freezer.
Once your ice has been freezing for around 45 minutes, stick a popsicle stick (or thick straw) into each ice cube and set it back where it was until it’s done freezing. Once it’s finished, kids can go nuts with their new ice paint. Careful though, food coloring stains. Maggie’s Naturals offers safe food coloring that doesn’t stain counters or hands, but will still stain clothing.
Via First Palette
What a great winter decoration to hang from trees or porches outside! All you need to do is make some food dyed ice cubes, set them in a pie pan, get something round to mold the hole for string, and freeze again. So festive. If you’re wondering what you’re going to do with a suncatcher in a place that has very little sun, don’t worry. It’ll look great anyway.
And of course, don’t forget everyone’s favorite thing to do with ice: make ice cream.
If you want to go for a very ambitious ice craft project, try doing balloon sculpture castles.