Cute and Easy River Rock Garden Turtles


My teenager and her friends LOVE to make crafts when they are together. This river rock garden turtle craft was so much fun for them to make. It is so easy it can be done by kids of any age!

Materials needed:

6 River rocks for every turtle (Round rocks are best for the head and body, while oblong rocks are best for the flippers.)
Acrylic paint (various colors- we used green, black, white, and blue)
Clear spray paint (If you plan on putting these little guys outdoors the clear paint really helps with weathering.)

We just put our paint onto some paper plates and got to work. Little squares on the rock that is used for the back of the turtle really make it look like a turtle. Dots on the flippers added texture. Getting creative and having fun is MOST important with this craft so let your inner sea turtle out and explore other options! You can test out ideas on a separate piece of paper by tracing your rocks onto paper and painting the paper turtle first. Spray your freshly painted, dry turtles with the clear spray paint if you want to display it outdoors!

These little guys just made our summer outdoor area feel more ‘beachy’! We love them! I can totally see these little guys on the counter in an ocean themed bathroom too!

Arts and Crafts: Chinese Lantern

Chinese Lanterns

Today we learned about Genghis Khan. We wanted to do an arts and crafts project, but let’s face it Genghis Khan wasn’t an ‘artsy craftsy’ fellow so, we decided to work off of the Chinese portion of the lesson and make some Chinese Lanterns.

I was surprised by the excitement of my children toward this simple craft! So I wanted to share this lesson with you.

Materials: (makes one lantern)
1, 11″x18″ piece of construction paper
1 Chop stick
2 pieces of string (approximately 18″ each)
Masking Tape
1 Flameless tea light

Preparing the paper:

First we took a standard 11″x18″ piece of construction paper and folded it in half ‘hot dog’ style.

Then we measured with our rulers and marked off 1″ increments along the long edge of the paper.

We made an additional line at the opposite side of our markings along the entire edge about 1″ in from the edge. (This would be the place to stop cutting.)

Finally we cut straight lines from our measured markings to the ‘stop line’.


We opened up the folded paper and curled the opened paper into the lantern shape. Then stapled the two short ends of the construction paper together at the top and the bottom of the lantern.

We cut one small strip of paper and fastened it across the bottom of the lantern to hold our candles. (flameless tea lights)

We stapled the strings to the top of our lantern and attached them to a stick with tape.

That’s it. My children took their finished lanterns into a darkened room and bounced them up and down. They both remarked how much the finished lanterns looked like ‘jellyfish’ with the tea lights reflecting inside.

With Chinese New Year coming up I thought this activity also would be fun to share with some of our book club friends too. I hope your children enjoy this craft as much as mine did.