Christmas Papercraft

I have three sons, who are all very smart and full of energy. They're grown now but were sometimes a bit of a handful when they were younger. The lead-in to Christmas could be trying as their anticipation mounted. One of them, and I won't name names, has pretty serious gastric reflux and when he was preschool age he would start coming into my room at three am and throwing up on my bed around Thanksgiving. This would last until Christmas and was a side effect of his excitement and anticipation. It wasn't much fun for either of us. I found by giving them things to do to help get ready for the season they were able to settle down a little bit. In that spirit I offer these Christmas papercraft ideas.

One of the simplest but most useful things you can do is make a paper chain for the tree. You do this with construction paper, cut it into strips and glue the strips into interlocking circles. Then you can hang it on the tree or maybe by the front door. You can use seasonal colors like red, green and gold if you like. This may not sound very interesting but it can be tremendously helpful. Young kids have a hard time with time and Christmas may feel like it's never going to get here. When you make your chain make one link for each day until the holiday. Then at the end of the day, as part of your child's bedtime routine, let them tear one link off the chain. They'll see the shrinking chain and have concrete proof that Christmas really is on the way.

Delta 7 Studios has a terrific page filled with Christmas themed papercraft. Much of it is mechanical in nature, like various cars for a Santa train, including the you're naughty coal car. I really like the handcar, especially because I was thinking about how awesome handcars are the other day and wondering if anyone is still using them to zip around on railroad tracks. The riverboat and the sky flyer are also really nice. You can check them all out here: http://www.delta7studios.com/Delta_7_Studios/Christmas_Models.html

I really like this little Christmas tree from the Canon Creative Park. It comes with ornaments and there is a link at the bottom of the page for presents you can make and put under it. http://cp.c-ij.com/en/contents/3159/03498/index.html

How about a Christmas card that pops up? It contains a story but that's not all. A three d house pops up to go along with the story. But there's even more than that. Santa is stuck in the chimney of the popup house. Can you get him out? I don't know. http://cp.c-ij.com/en/contents/3058/pop-up-christmas-house/index.html

Have you ever read the short story The Ugly Chickens by Howard Waldrop? It's extremely good and it's about dodoes. If you're a fan of that story or just the dodo in particular you'll love this dodo themed Christmas papercraft. http://www.dodo.blog.br/christmas-dodo-papercraft/ It's extremely cute. Enjoy!

This Yule log isn't as delicious as the cake but you can hide a small gift in it. And it is quite pretty. I especially like the stripes. And the cheer. Christmas cheer is always good. http://orekue.tuzikaze.com/paper/seasun/chr/page.html

One-Paragraph Review

This week's one-paragraph review is from ArtifactsRUs who wrote in to say, "The Warehouse 13 Christmas episode was busting with Christmas awesomeawesity. Do yourself a favor and catch it in reruns on SyFy." Do you have a one-paragraph (or smaller) review you'd like to share? Send it in to me for consideration. You can reach me at feedback@qualitytimeweekly.com.