The presents have all been opened, we are working hard at eating our way through the  mountain of chocolates and it’s time to tidy away the detritus of Christmas. I cannot bear to throw anything away which might be useful or could be turned into something else so here are a few ideas for things to do with Christmas ‘rubbish’.

1. Old Christmas cards make great gift tags/Christmas pictures/next year’s Christmas cards. I tear the fronts off and keep them for crafts and keep the backs clipped together in a drawer for shopping lists (just like my Mum did!) You never know when they may come in useful, I forgot about Mistletoe until late on Christmas Eve so:

It may be a bit silly but it got me a few kisses so it works for me!

You can also make these little decorations with them

2. Christmas wrapping paper. It is NOT stingy to fold the good pieces and keep them in a bag with the decorations to re-use next year! It is economical and kinder to the planet. Of course, if you have a very small child it will also have been the best present they received this year! It is also useful shredded/ torn up and used as packing in parcels throughout the year or at Christmas next year.

Scrunched up firmly into a ball and covered with PVA glue and hung up to dry it can be used to make baubles. Once the glue has dried (you may need two coats to make them nice and hard) they can be decorated with glitter, sequins etc. If you are cleverly crafty you can scrunch it into animal shapes (reindeer, penguins), bells, stars, Father Christmas etc.

3. Boxes. Never EVER throw boxes, cartons or tubes away. It is a sin. Recycled craft has to be the easiest thing to do with children and allows them freedom to explore their own creativity without the preconceived ideas which come with craft packs and pre-cuts. Bonus Boy has been making things with boxes since he could sit up at the table, as have the other three, and there have been many strange creatures created with egg boxes, toothpaste tubes and cereal boxes.

At Christmas, the boxes are REALLY good! Chocolate boxes are sturdy and come in fabulous shapes and we have a lovely big pile to start our year of crafting off!

But of course, the first thing which had to be made (and I did help a bit with this one because he’d seen one in the Fantastic Rainy Day Book he wanted a go at and he asked me to!) was a robot. He makes a lot of robots and I wasn’t going to say no because Maggy at Red Ted Art sent  me a little gift in a box she had ear-marked for robot making so it would’ve been rude not to oblige!

We used the end of a roll of sticky back shiny which is really useful for quick crafts as there is no hanging around waiting for glue to dry!

Toilet roll tube legs and arms (stuck on with double-sided sticky pads for happy crafting!)

Mince pie case ears and paperclip face and body ornament (and googly eyes of course!)

And he’s done! Here he is looking very dapper and standing in front of my Darling Daughter’s Reduce, Re-Use, recycle poster!

What are your top tips for recycling the Christmas waste?

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