12 Easy Basket Stuffers That are Perfect for an Easter Bunny on a Budget
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My mom is the actual Queen of Holidays (formal title, crown pending).
I’m not kidding: she was Pinterest-mom goals before the internet was really even a thing. (Having four kids and a small budget, she had no choice but to dive into those DIYs.)
Every time a holiday came around, the other parents looked on with a healthy dose of mom-envy. And while she dominated every holiday with Pinterest-worthy DIYs, Easter, in all its springtime, pastel, precious-baby-animal sweetness, was like her Super Bowl.
(Although if Easter was her Super Bowl, then Christmas might have been like if the Super Bowl had an older, hotter brother. But I digress.)
The bottom line is that everything I ever learned about celebrating on a budget, I learned from my mom — and now I am but a vessel delivering her Pinterest-worthy DIYing wisdom to you all. (Side note: She is now on Pinterest, and has, believe it or not, upped her game.)
12 Fun and Easy DIY Easter Basket Stuffers
Whether you celebrate Easter or prefer to stick to a less specific “springtime celebration,” read on to find 12 fun ideas for filling those baskets on a budget — and using things you might even have on hand.
1. Easter Activity Pages
Print out Easter activity coloring pages (you can find them free online with a quick Google search).
Then take a few of the better-looking (read: not broken in half) crayons or colored pencils from your school supplies bin, bundle them and tie with a pastel ribbon scrap or a piece of twine.
For older kids, free crossword puzzles, word searches or mad-libs are all great options.
2. DIY Bunny Ears
Honestly, these just look cute sticking up at the back of the basket. Plus they’re so easy:
Simply cut bunny ear shapes out of cardstock (two each of large and small shapes in contrasting colors) and glue them together.
Then take a dollar store headband (or just sneak one out of your kid’s collection) and staple or glue the ears around the headband.
Done and done — and will make for some cute photos!
3. Homemade Easter Treats
Instead of buying expensive packaged candy that only serves to send your children into a jelly bean-fueled rage, make treats at home to save some money (and your sanity).
Check out these recipes for Easter-themed snacks that you can DIY and then package with cute Easter-y stickers and ribbons.
Bonus: You decide how healthy (or unhealthy) the treats are.
4. Gently-Used Books
Order gently-used books from sites like Amazon or ThriftBooks. I promise, your kid cannot tell the difference between a brand new $16 board book and a gently-used $2 board book.
Just make sure to disinfect the pages (try DIYing the all-purpose cleaner in this post) if your kid’s a chewer.
5. Seed Packets
Seed packets are inexpensive and can make for a fun long term project for your kids.
You might have to do a little research into which plants will thrive in your area, but if you pick a few hardy varieties, even the tiniest green thumbs should be able to see their hard work pay off.
Cute and spring-y and gets your kids outside this summer? Check, check and check.
6. Painted Rocks
OK, I know this one sounds a little too thrifty, but hear me out: Collect a few rocks from around the yard, then use acrylic paint or Sharpie paint markers to turn them into springtime critters.
Once your kid plants their garden, they can scatter the rocks around — a sweet surprise under every leaf!
7. DIY Memory Match Game
Collect paint sample cards in several different springtime colors (just make sure to get two of each) and then cut them out in the shape of Easter eggs.
Adorable, colorful and a fun game all in one!
8. Stuff Eggs With Coupons
We do love a good coupon here at The Penny Hoarder, but this isn’t exactly what it sounds like.
Rather than giving your little darling 50 cents off her next toothpaste purchase, stuff plastic Easter eggs with fun coupons for things like getting out of chores, special outings with mom or dad or privileges like staying up past bedtime and eating dessert for dinner.
9. DIY Slime
1. Mix 1/2 cup of non-toxic clear school glue with 1/2 cup of water. Add food coloring, mix and set aside.
2. In a separate bowl, fully dissolve 3 tablespoons of corn starch in 1/4 cup of warm water. Add more water as needed. The starch will thicken as it cools.
3. Add the corn starch mixture to the glue mixture and stir until the two parts come together as one big blob.
Seriously, it’s that easy! All you have to do now is separate the different colors into small jars or containers, wrap with a colorful ribbon and wait for the slimy fun to begin.
10. DIY T-Shirt Decorating Kit
Buy some basic white T-shirts ($3 to $5 at a craft store), and then split up a pack of fabric markers between the different baskets. Bundle the markers together with a T-shirt and tie with a piece of twine or a ribbon.
When it’s time to decorate, everyone can throw their markers in the pot and share the different colors.
11. DIY Sidewalk Chalk
This works great on its own for younger kids, but for older kids, include some bean bags for a cornhole-esque sidewalk toss game that will provide hours of fun this spring and even through the summer.
1. Mix 3/4 cups of warm water with 1 ½ cups of plaster of Paris. Divide mixture into a few separate bowls if you want to use more than one color of tempera paint.
2. Mix a heaping tablespoon of tempera paint into each bowl — add a little extra if you want the colors to be more vibrant.
3. Pour mixture into molds. Try switching it up a little with swirls and layers!
4. Tap the mold lightly on the counter to release any air bubbles. Let the chalk dry overnight (depending on the size and depth of your molds, it may take a bit longer).
When the chalk is dry, simply pop it out, wrap it up and tie it with an Easter bow!
12. Include Necessities
Don’t be afraid to include something your kid needs anyway.
It doesn’t have to be as boring as socks and underwear (although more power to you!), but if you know your kid is going to need new cleats for spring baseball or a new swimsuit for an upcoming beach vacation, now’s the time to slip the necessities in there disguised as cool gifts.
Your Turn: Does your family gift Easter baskets? What do you include in yours?
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Grace Schweizer is a junior writer at The Penny Hoarder. She blames her mom for her very serious craft store addiction.