Zebra Mix Cupcake KitAs the nieces and nephews and various children in my life get a little older, I’m increasingly more into finding crafty gifts that not only entertain them for a little while, but let them show off their handiwork when they’re done. Here are a few favorites that help kids explore their creativity- while showings off yours. (You awesome gift giver, you!)

CMP fave Zebra Mix
has come out with a really fun new kit – a Cupcake Studio activity kit.
Could you just get a kid a box of cheap cupcake mix instead? Sure, but
then you’d be lame.

This one happens to come with organic
cupcake and frosting mix, decorating sugars, papers and a squeeze
bottle, and a fabulous “baking map” that helps kids plan and execute
their designs. You just add the egg, cream cheese for frosting, and a lot
of butter. Kids about 3 and up can do it with your help – although
40-somethings need help washing out that squeeze bottle. Find it at ZebraMix.com.

make your own book from Eye Can ArtI love the moms behind Eye Can Art,
who are really committed to getting kids into art projects more
advanced than “grind the Play-Doh into the couch.” Their Printmaking
, reviewed here before, is totally fun, and I’m dying to try out the
Book-in-a-Box Kit
(shown) to help future Caldecott winners pen their first 3-D
masterpiece. Because it comes with three books, it also makes an
economical gift for families with more than one kid.

Beaded bracelet from Bijoux in a Box jewelry kitI’m super enamored of the Bijoux in a Box jewelry making kits, which turn kids into jewelry designers with little beaded bracelets and
necklaces that are just as good as some of the stuff you see for sale
on the street. They’ve also got projects for backpack zipper pulls,
bookmarks and even wine stoppers – but maybe that isn’t quite the right one for your preschoolers.

The Little Experience kids' craft kitsThe Little Experience offers just a great selection of mini craft kits at unbelievable prices and you’ll find a ton of options from the The Pajama Squid.
There’s everything from felt finger puppet kits and small wooden
rockets and pirate ships that little kids can assemble and paint, to
DIY stuffed animals for older ones. None cost more than $19, and most
are much less. In fact at just $7.50, we included the felt flower
jewelry kit (available at My Sweet Muffin) in our Holiday Gift Guide as a smart inexpensive kid’s gift that doesn’t come across like a stocking stuffer with aspirations.

You know what I mean.  –Liz

*Save 20% from Zebra Mix today or tomorrow (12/9-10) by typing COOLMOMPICKS 20% under “add special instructions to seller”; a refund will be issued.

*Save 20% on the Eye Can Art Kits with code coolmomsheartart9 through 12/20

*Save 10% at The Pajama Squid with code CMP10