’tis the Season! DIY Holiday Crafts for the Family

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Did you know that Winter is citrus season? As you’re busy buying food for holiday parties this month, make sure to grab an extra bag of citrus fruit for this fun family friendly craft! This simple activity is a great way to get your young family members into nature and exploring different ways to preserve and use food.


  • small items found in nature (for citrus center)
  • hot glue gun
  • string or twine
  • 1 bag of citrus fruit (oranges, lemons, or grapefruit)
  • a knife, 2 cookie trays, parchment paper
  • a creative mindset!

How to:

  1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Thinly slice your citrus fruit to about 1/2 cm thickness. Gently press the juices out with a cloth or paper towel. This will help speed up the drying process.
  3. Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper and place your citrus wheels evenly on top. Place in the oven for 3 hours to slowly dehydrate. About half way through, flip your wheels over. You’ll know when they’re done, because they’ll be crispy to the touch with no moisture left!
  4. While your citrus wheels are dehydrating, take a nature walk with your family to find small items that will be hot glued to the center of your citrus. These can include spiky ‘gum balls,’ acorns, seed pods, dried flowers etc. This is a great opportunity to discuss the reproductive timeline of trees. As they lose their leaves, it’s easy to find uniquely shaped seeds on the ground!
  5. Once your citrus wheels are dried out, hot glue your nature items to the center. Then create twine loops to be glued on the back (see photos). These are great ornaments or napkin holders year after year. You can also choose to string your citrus on a long piece of twine to create a garland. Once all circles are on the string, hot glue your nature items to the citrus center to hold your twine in place.