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As so many of us are doing this school vacation week, we are spending more time around home. I know it might feel like all activities have been exhausted at this point. But! Here is one more for you that combines both indoor and outdoor fun for you and the kids this week.

These homemade winter lanterns are fun and interesting to make, yes, even for my middle schooler.  After they were finished, we got to take them outdoors for a little twilight winter exploration.

I initially got this idea from a homeschool blog I follow, and to be honest, I couldn’t wait to try it myself with my own family—and it did not disappoint.

If you’d like to give this a whirl for yourself, here are the materials you’ll need:

  1. Recycled jars. Old salsa and spaghetti sauce jars work great!
  2. Tissue paper
  3. Modge Podge
  4. Paintbrushes
  5. Scissors
  6. Twine
  7. LED battery operated tea lights
  8. Optional hole punch for a snowflake effect

Once you gather your supplies, go ahead and create!

  1. Cut out any type of evergreen tree you’d like with the tissue paper. You don’t have to keep with that theme, think out of the box and get creative with your winter scene.
  2. Once you have your tissue paper scene ready, go ahead and paint a little Modge Podge on your jar (which acts as glue) and place your cutouts on in the arrangement you would like.
  3. Once your tissue paper scene is in place, paint another layer of Modge Podge over the entire jar – to secure everything and to also give it that frosted look.
  4. Let dry.
  5. Add twine around top of jar to act as your handle.
  6. Insert LED tea light when ready.

And voila! You have some sweet homemade winter lanterns!

Once it starts to get dusky, bundle up the family, maybe grab a sled for littles to ride in, and set out on a mini outdoor twilight adventure hike.

We use the Bedford Rail Trail since it’s accessible from our backyard, and there are so many little side trails you can explore. Maybe once you head back home, make some well deserved hot cocoa to get nice and warm again.

The next morning, you can use those lanterns as a table centerpiece for breakfast.

I hope you have fun with this little winter project, and maybe we will see you out on an evening lantern adventure this week!

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