Hey Everyone, I’m Kimberly, with Get Away Today, and I am so excited to be here on the Crafting Chicks! I regularly contribute to Packed with Fun, the official blog for Get Away Today where we share our best travel tips and all sorts of fun ways to extend vacation magic at home with vacation countdowns, games, crafts and more. There is so much to love about Disneyland, and it seems like there is always something new and exciting happening. This year is no different, so for my first article, I thought it would be fun to do a quick year-at-a-glance for everything you need to know about going to Disneyland in 2016.

Everything You Need to Know About Going to Disneyland in 2016

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Early Winter/Spring

The Diamond Celebration is still going strong with sparkly decor, upgraded attractions, limited time merchandise and food items, and three incredible nighttime spectaculars; World of Color – Celebrate, the Disneyland Forever fireworks, and Paint the Night Parade.


For the first time ever, Disneyland is offering a dining package that includes premier viewing for the Paint the Night Parade. You can get a grab-and-go picnic from Aladdin’s Oasis for reserved viewing by “it’s a small world,” or enjoy a three-course meal at the Blue Bayou with reserved viewing on Main Street U.S.A. Reservations can be made online or over the phone 60 days in advance.

Star Wars is all the rage and Season of the Force is a limited time Star Wars overlay that has temporarily taken over Tomorrowland. If you have a Star Wars Fan at your house, go you must. Space Mountain has become Hyperspace Mountain complete with Rebel Wing Fighters and the Tomorrowland Theater is showing Path of the Jedi, a 10 minute 4-D compilation of the entire film series. Kids ages 4-12 can register to be a part of the new Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple show. There are normally six showings each day and the spots are filled on a first come, first served basis, so you’ll want to get there early. The Star Wars Launch Bay has actual props and costumes from the films, and you can meet Chewbacca and Darth Vader. Special merchandise and food options are available. It’s unclear how long Season of the Force will be available, but we have been told at least through Spring 2016.


Along these lines, Disneyland is beginning construction on the new Star Wars Land that was recently announced. To make way for this 14-acre expansion, some attractions, like the Disneyland Railroad, Fantasmic, and Tom Sawyer’s Island will close indefinitely. Also closing, but this one is permanent, is Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular at the Hyperion Theater. Its final performance will be on January 10, 2016 to make way for an all-new musical coming this summer.


Summer is always a fun time at Disneyland! With extended hours, there is so much more time to see and do everything. In addition to being the last few months of the Diamond Celebration, a new Frozen Musical is coming to Disney California Adventure Park in the Hyperion Theatre. This will replace Aladdin, and we’ve been told that it will also replace the current Frozen Celebration Sing-a-Long that is held in the Royal Theater, formerly the Muppet-Vision Theater. There’s no word on what will replace the Royal Theater, but we’re sure it will be fantastic. And I just have to say, summer nights are even better at Disneyland. Try to make sure that you are in Cars Land when dusk hits at least one of the nights of your vacation. There is an informal neon lighting ceremony each night set to music. You may want to consider dining packages for World of Color – Celebrate! and the Paint the Night Parade. Make sure you make time to experience the Tim Burton inspired Diamond Mad T Party and the Disneyland Forever fireworks as well.



Halloween Time is one of the most festive and popular times of year to visit Disneyland. Halloween Time officially begins mid-September and continues through Halloween. If you want to beat the crowds, September is a great time to go to still get the Halloween experience. Or, if you don’t want the kids to miss school, make your plans over their fall break. Halloween Time includes the annual Main Street U.S.A. Pumpkin Festival, Haunted Mansion Holiday, extra spooky overlays to the Tower of Terror, costumed characters and so much more. Mickey’s Halloween Party takes place on select nights during Halloween Time. This is a private event that requires a separate ticket. On party nights, Disneyland closes a little early to regular guests and is only open for party guests who get access to most attractions, trick-or-treating, a special Halloween parade, fireworks, and other fun treats.



The holiday season kicks off in mid-November and continues through early January. The holidays bring festive overlays to classic attractions like “it’s a small world” holiday, the Jingle Cruise, and other fun surprises. A Christmas Fantasy Parade and the Believe in Holiday Magic fireworks are guaranteed to get you in the Christmas spirit. Plus, the entire Disneyland Resort is completely decked out for the season.


Also, although it’s not Disneyland related, it is definitely worth mentioning that The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will open at Universal Studios Hollywood on April 7, 2016. The new land will include incredible rides, shops, entertainment, and of course, Butterbeer. If you are a Harry Potter fan, you’ll definitely want to make it part of your Disneyland vacation.


Here are some dates to keep in mind when planning your 2016 Disneyland vacation including school breaks:

  • February 15, Presidents Day
  • March 27, Easter
  • April 7, Wizarding World of Harry Potter opens at Universal Studios Hollywood
  • May 4, Unofficial Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You)
  • Season of the Force – limited time experiences
  • May 30, Memorial Day
  • September 5, Labor Day and Final Day of the Diamond Celebration

If you would like help planning your Disneyland vacation, our agents at Get Away Today would LOVE to help! They’ve toured all of the area hotels and visit the parks at least once a year so that they can pass on their expert advice. Give them a call at 855-GET-AWAY or check out our Disneyland packages at Be sure to mention promo code: CraftingChicks when booking online or over the phone and you’ll save an extra $10 off your package.

Once you have your Disneyland vacation plans, make the countdown even better with our free Star Wars vacation countdown printables featuring your favorite Star Wars characters. Everyone in your family can have their own and choose from Han Solo, Darth Vader, Chewbacca and R2-D2, Yoda, Princess Leia and Luke Skywalker.  Download your favorite one here, and May the Force Be With You!


And for more Disneyland fun and entertainment check out:

FREE Disneyland Countdown Template

disneyland countdown crafting chicks 3

Disney Vacation Ideas and Printables

Disney vacation ideas and printables! Countdown, luggage tags, games, incentives for kids, t-shirt designs, autograph books, and so much more!


Dole Whip Recipe

How to Make Dole Whip

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Hi guys! Its Ali from Dream Crafter and I want to tell you a little story.

Once upon a time a girl (me) saved all her money and bought her self a miter saw. Then her mother came to visit and brought a bunch of other tools. Then said girl decided to build stuff. Her mother knew she had no idea what she was doing so she taught her all she knew. And this beast was born.

Today I’m going to show you how to build your own drink stand.

drink stand full

I used the plans from THIS puppet theater and they were SO easy to follow. Seriously, if I could do it YOU could do it! I love Ana White. So inspiring! Now this is what mine looked like before it got all gussied up:


After it was built, I then puttied all the holes, sanded it smooth and calked a few places (until my calk gun punctured a hole in the side of the calk and it was a huge mess). Then I painted it Pure White by Valspar and clear coated it. I followed the exact plans except for a few things. First of all I used 1/2 inch MDF to build mine and it worked great! Next, I skipped the step where you are suppose to add a rod for the curtain. Instead, I wanted my kids to be able to change out the curtain by themselves so I added a velcro strip to the back side and then velcro to the curtains.

back of stand

My boys love using it for a “market” in their kitchen play area or as a puppet theater.

puppet show front

We also took it out to the street so the boys could sell “red juice” as my boys would say.


I can’t wait to make them some different curtains so they can change them out to match what they are doing. And I even left a slot at the top so you could add different signs to let people know what your stand is for! I think it would also be fun to paint the front with some chalk board paint some day so they could write messages on it. This baby has so many possibilities! What about a pretend post office? Or library? Or floral shop?! I love how it has so many uses. So, the end of the story is this: The girl was proud of her first build and her and her children lived happily ever after. :)

Build your own drink stand with this easy to follow tutorial!

Be sure to stop by Dream Crafter for more summer/fall goodness or follow me on Instagram @dreamcrafter101 !


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Hey! It’s Kari from Life PreKARIous! I am so excited to show you this fun DIY Beverage Tray, today! This summer has gone by way to fast and I’m determined to make what’s left of it the best ever! Nothing quite says summer like an ice cold lemonade on the porch, right?

DIY Beverage Tray

I used a round piece of wood called a “project panel” I found at Home Depot. First, I painted the whole thing with a spray primer. Then, I drew my design on with pencil.

DIY Beverage Tray

I had some left over bright yellow latex paint from painting my front door, so I used that as well as some white acrylic paint. To get the textured look, I painted in layers and embraced the visible brush strokes that usually make me cringe!

DIY Beverage Tray

After I finished painting, I topped it off with two coats of high gloss polyurethane.

DIY Beverage Tray

After the polyurethane dried I added the cabinet door handles.

DIY Beverage Tray

The screws were a little bit too long so I had my husband grind them down a little.

DIY Beverage Tray

I think the lemon is perfect for summer, but you could do almost anything! A jack-o-lantern one for Halloween and a peppermint one Christmas would be SO fun!

Lemonade, anyone?

DIY Beverage Tray

DIY Beverage Tray

Hop over to Life PreKARIous to try my yummy Sparking Lemonade recipe!


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Hi! My name is Emily and I blog all the things (but mostly food…and mostly desserts) over at Is This Really My Life. I absolutely love when Crafting Chicks put together an awesome series like this summer’s Mother Hen’s Summer Survival Guide. And then I love it even more when they ask if I’d like to participate.

Heck to the yes!

Don’t tell, but I pretend the Crafting Chicks have adopted me. All the time.

I was super excited to come up with a recipe to go with a garden theme. I was pretty sure it would be cupcakes because my daughter’s birthday is in August and she’s all about the cupcakes. But what kind of garden-y cupcakes would an 8-year-old love? Butterfly cupcakes, of course!

Butterfly Cupcakes - unbelievably easy to make and so much fun to eat!

You know what I love most about these butterfly cupcakes? They’re crazy easy even if you make the cupcakes and frosting from scratch. For this batch I used a boxed mix because my homemade cupcakes tend to sink (I have yet to get them right) and no one was the wiser. I paired them with my favorite homemade vanilla frosting, which I colored a light blue for the sky.

The pretzel wings (white fudge Flipz + colored sugar) took only a couple minutes to make and are seriously tasty— I highly recommend making a few extra so you can snack on them while assembling the cupcakes. Or you can take the extras and dip them in the leftover frosting. I won’t judge.

To make the wings, simply lay out your sets of pretzels and lightly mist with water. Gently sprinkle colored sugar over the pretzels covering them as best you can. Let dry before placing on cupcakes.

Butterfly Cupcakes - how to easily make glittery wings.

For the butterfly body, I found these super cute colored pearls at my local grocery store. They are Celebration by SweetWorks and were packaged individually. But you can use any pearls or mini candy or fancy frosting tip if you’d like.

Butterfly Cupcakes - unbelievably easy to make and so much fun to eat!

I was hoping I could prop up the wings a bit but the pretzels were too heavy and the frosting too fluffy, but I think they still turned out adorable. Livi was super happy with them, and that’s all that really matters.

Butterfly Cupcakes - unbelievably easy to make and so much fun to eat!

Butterfly Cupcakes
Makes approx. 2 dozen.


  • 1 box rainbow chip (aka funfetti) cake mix plus ingredients to make cupcakes OR your favorite homemade recipe
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 T milk
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 3 to 4 drops blue food coloring
  • 48 white chocolate-dipped pretzels (I used white fudge Flipz)
  • Colored sugar
  • Colored pearls
  • Black or brown frosting for the antennae


  1. For cupcakes, mix and bake cake mix according to package directions. Cool cupcakes completely before frosting.
  2. While cupcakes are baking and cooling, prepare your sparkly wings. Lay the pretzels flat side down on paper towels (see photo above) and lightly mist with water. Sprinkle colored sugar on the pretzels covering them as best you can. Let dry before placing on cupcakes.
  3. For frosting, beat the butter on medium speed for about 2 minutes until creamy. Add powdered sugar, milk, vanilla, salt and food coloring and beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Add more sugar if frosting is too thin, more milk if too thick. Frost cooled cupcakes.
  4. To assemble butterflies, place colored pearls in a line down center of cupcakes. Attach a set of wings as shown and finish them off by piping antennae on the top.


If you love cupcakes as much as I do, I’ve shared quite a few cupcake recipes on my site including these seasonal peach cobbler cupcakes. Mmm…

Peach cobbler cupcakes - a hint of peach flavor in the cupcakes and peach preserves in the center.

I love being social! Feel free to connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ and YouTube!

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Hi! I’m Kimbo from a girl and a glue gun and I’m super excited to be here! I’ve got a super fun craft for you today–Kid painted garden markers…made from paint sticks! Kid Painted Garden Markers squash I did not steal these. I’m just a hoarder….(and it’s not limited to paint sticks.) So slowly and surely I’ve saved these….but I’m sure Home Depot would let you have some. Our store has the nicest workers! paint stick

I gave each a coat of spray paint to cover up the designs. (kids could do this with regular paint!) painted paint sticks

Then it was time for them to decorate! Here’s the things with letting your kids paint. They love it…and they start out decorating and making designs and then it slowly becomes covered with all the paint mixed together.

And that’s fine. I don’t like to micro manage–I want the kids to be able to create without me over their shoulder!

But I do have a little secret.–I don’t let them use any dark colors. One drop of brown or black and no matter what colors you have it’s going to look like poop (the color)

I try to use bright fun colors. And white is a great color! You could use any color and white and get many different shades!

Here is the color palette we used: paint colors

I have three kids so each one got to decorate 2 sticks. kid painting

After they get them all decorated…and those clumps of paint dried…I added some Expressions vinyl! Cut it out of Permanent outdoor vinyl with my Silhouette — supplies Added some transfer tape-

garden vegetable vinyl

Cut eat vegetable apart and peel up transfer tape with vinyl attached. peel up transfer tape Lay on project and rub to get a great stick.

rub vinyl with applicator tool

Then peel up the transfer tape and your vinyl will be on your paint sticks!

peel up expressions vinyl

(you can also have your kids write it with a sharpie!)
garden markers from paint sticks

They turned out so fun and colorful! I want to have them paint big canvas’s now! fun kids craft idea with paint fun fact: I had to ask on facebook if any of my neighbors had a garden that I could take pictures in…cause I don’t have one! ha! Thanks to my friend Jillian for letting me tromp through her yard! tomato garden maker corn plant marker diy

If you are looking for more fun kids crafts you can go here

and You can always follow me here: II twitter II facebook II bloglovin II instagram

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In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

To kick off our In the Garden with Kids Themed Week, we’ve got a great round up for you!  Printables, activities, games and more!

In the Garden with Kids


5 cool plants for kids from The Typical Mom

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Bean Teepee from Joyful Toddlers

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Seeds Mini-Book from Spell Out Loud

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Garden Hobbit House from Imagine Childhood

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Quick and colorful kids’ garden from K.I.S.S.

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Fairy garden from See Jamie Blog

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Soda bottle watering can from Mess for Less

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Easy plants to grow with children from Nurture Store

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Imaginative play garden from Frugal Fun for Boys

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Checklists and Printables from Lemon Lime Adventures

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Growing sunflowers from The Golden Gleam

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

DIY Watering Can from One Creative Mommy

In the Garden with Kids - Activities and Printables - So many ideas!  Perfect for keeping the kids busy this summer!

Don’t miss the rest of our Mother Hen’s Summer Survival Guides!  Please join us for this summer of fun & learning!  We will give you all of the ideas, supply lists, book ideas and more to make this a smooth summer program to enjoy at home.  Sign up for our newsletter HERE.  Each Friday we will be sending links to the weekly theme and posts so that you can get started!

Mondays: We will be sharing the best learning ideas, crafts and more from our favorite sites that tie into our weekly theme.

Tuesday:  We will be sharing the best Children’s Books!  And a literature activity that coincides with both the Chicks’ Pick book and weekly theme.

Wednesday, Thursday & Friday:  We will be sharing posts from our favorite bloggers!  They have the best ideas and are excited to be a part of this series!  All of these posts will tie into the theme:)

Fridays: Make sure you join each Friday to see what activities, supplies & other things you will need to plan your themed week at home.  We also will be having really cool giveaways each and every Friday of this series.

Hi crafting friends! I’m delighted to share a fun WEATHER snack today about rainbows and clouds! It’s a fun treat that kids can assemble themselves in under 2 minutes!

Rainbow Kids Snack

But first, let me introduce myself…I’m Kristen Duke, and I share the ideas in my head over at Capturing Joy. If you need photo tips, want to see my favorite family recipes, travel adventures, or check out our home tour, I’d love to have you! I live in Austin Texas and have 4 fabulous children and a handy husband that helps me with the projects in my head.
Kristen Duke Logo and Headshot

Now, back to the rainbow snack. I altered an idea I saw from a kindergarten site, and got my girls involved in the process.

Here is what you need:

  1. graham crackers
  2. blue frosting
  3. marshmallows
  4. rainbow airhead

graham crackers and marshmallows for rainbow snack

I made them first, to make sure it all went as I thought it would in my head. I used 2 sizes of marshmallows for fun, you can just use one if you’d like.

rainbow weather snack

In order for the rainbow airhead to stand up, it helps to have a thicker layer of frosting, and putting the marshmallow clouds down first to “book end” the rainbow and hold it in place. I also trimmed down the rainbow just a touch so it wasn’t too long.

frosting rainbows

My 6 year old daughter was able to whip hers together, easy, and she thought it was so fun!

marshmallow snack

She loved the 2 sizes of marshmallows

weather snack for kids

She also really loved eating her creation!

eating rainbow snack

If you’re talking about weather, or just want to make a fun snack with your kids, try out the Graham Cracker Rainbow Snack!

graham cracker rainbow snack

Thanks for having me, Crafting Chicks!

I’d love you all to come on over and visit Capturing Joy, or find me on your favorite social media, I love Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook!

Here are a few posts that I’ve shared that you may also like:

Capturing Joy with Kristen Duke

Kids Lunch Jokes and Brain Teasers // Blueberry Yogurt Protein Bites // Say NO to Auto Beginner Photography // What to Wear in family pictures by COLOR


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Hey! It’s liZ, one of the two Elizabeth’s, from over at Simple Simon and Company and we are happy to be here at the Crafting Chicks today!!!
Today we get to share a project that I’ve done about 2.8 billion times with students in my art classes and with my kids at home. It’s a favorite because it’s fun, they always turn out interesting, and this project lends it self nicely to so many different teaching topics….from the weather, to types of clouds, to color resist, to mixing colors, to making water color washes, etc. etc. Plus it’s easy enough for a preschooler but is still interesting enough for a junior high student to work on….I’ve done it with students of all ages and have consistently gotten terrific results.
This is a project that you can do inside or outside. All you need is access to see the clouds in the sky. (Since this after all is going to be a painting of the clouds.)
So, once you’ve found your cloud viewing location gather your supplies:
Now look at the clouds very carefully. Are they long and thin or fat and fluffy? Are there many clouds or just a few?
Next start to draw what you can see. Use a white crayon to draw the clouds on your white paper.
(It might be a little tricky—and silly if you’re 4—not to see the crayon on the paper but you can do it!)
When drawing press hard…and remember not to just draw the outline of the clouds, color them in all white to!
After you have your clouds just the way you want them paint over the top of the entire page with the blue sky color of your choice.
(Just use regular, plain, old water colors…the kind you can get at the store for like $2.)
As you paint you will see something magic start to happen. The blue paint will cover you paper but won’t stick to your clouds…and within minutes all the clouds that you drew with your white crayon will magically appear!
And if you are 11, like my son is, you will be more interested in why the wax of the crayon will repel the water and that will lead to further experimentation. (Which will be fun to.)
And, of course, you will be more interested in drawing all the different types of clouds (see the cumulus cloud below drawn by my 7 year old) instead of what you actually observe in the sky. (Which is ok to—there is no “right way” in art…especially if you are a “scientist” and not an “artist”.)
However, if you are 4 you won’t care about any of that.
You will do your best to draw the clouds how you see them and then just be amazed when you paint the sky on top of them.
It’s fun. It’s easy. It’s entertaining. And it’s almost educational!
Who could ask for anything more?
(And…in a few months when the snow is falling you can do it all over again…just change the clouds to be snowflakes or snowmen and you’ve got a brand new project to keep everyone happy on a stormy day!)
Thanks for inviting us over to play today ladies! We just love stuff like this!
(And if you want to see a few simple science projects that kids love just head over to Simple Simon and Company to see what we’ve got going on today.)
***Or if you need another really easy art project you can find one here: Tape Trees, A Tutorial ***
Thanks again!
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