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By Lia Blanchard

The temperatures are supposed to come down a little this week, but let’s face it: it’s still hot. No surprise, really – after all, it IS July – but by this time in the summer many folks are ready to slow down and take a break from the heat.

Stuck indoors with kids?

When it’s too hot for the little ones to be outside, keeping them busy inside gets challenging, to say the least. Keep them occupied and have fun while creating something that can be enjoyed by everyone later!

Easy Cork Stamps – All this project needs are ink pads and corks. Let the kids stamp away and create stationery sets, gift tags, or wrapping paper. Use a fine-tip marker to draw details around the stamped circles to make balloons, fruit, snowmen, or whatever else you can think of!

Martha Stewart Kids Cork Stamping Project

Yummy Water – Let kids help make their own tasty hydration by adding flavors to two quarts of water. Try citrus fruits or berries, or a spa-like mint or cucumber. Feeling adventurous? How about creamsicle water?

Make stuff for Christmas

Get a head start on homemade Christmas gifts by indulging in a favorite hobby, or try one of these crafts!

Hand Painted Garden Stones – Purchase a concrete stepping stone (any shape) and give it a few coats of acrylic paint – something leftover from another project is perfect. After it’s dried, you have a blank slate on which to paint whatever you like! When your masterpiece is complete and dry, give it a couple of coats of spray-on sealant, and you have something beautiful ready for the holidays!

Summer birthday?

If it’s too early for you to bear thinking about Christmas, but have some summertime gift-giving to do, one of these ideas will definitely do the trick.

Fun in the Sun Children’s Playtime Activity Gift Set – Candy, jump rope, sidewalk chalk, and more, all packed into a summery bucket with a shovel and sun visor makes an adorable gift that will keep the kids busy for the rest of the summer!

Cooling Necktie – With polymer granules and some cute fabric, you can make a wraparound necktie or headband that cools its wearer through evaporation.

See them all on our Pinterest page

All of these ideas – and more – are found on our Pinterest page, on boards called Summertime Crafts and Summertime Gifts.

Enjoy!