How to make a punch piñata

Piñatas are so much fun! In Mexico all the little ones get excited about breaking a piñata and of course getting goodies that come out flying to the ground! It’s all fun and joy until there’s a little one who didn’t get anything, right? I have this DIY so that you make a piñata with a more fair fun!

I was looking for ideas for my son’s birthday celebration at school. I got so excited to know piñatas were allowed in his school! I was browsing on Pinterest for ideas when I saw a post about how to make a punch piñata by Gray House Harbor, and it hit me! I’d seen them already, but I couldn’t remember much about them.

I decided to make my own in order to ease Robbie’s teacher’s mind as she wouldn’t have to deal with children crying or being sad because they didn’t get anything from the piñata. With this piñata, each kid would get the same amount and type of goodies. Here is the list of things you’ll need and the instructions for you to make your own!

This is what you’ll need:

– a long rectangular cardboard box (I used two LaCroix boxes)

– poster paper

– sharp cutter

– tissue paper

– paper cups

– duct tape & masking tape

– small goodies for the cups

I went to my local Dollar Tree and got most of the materials, and even the goodies! Their sharp cutter is actually really good! So if you don’t have one, you know where to go.

First, if you don’t have a long enough box, put together cardboard boxes and paste them using duct tape. Draw as many circles as you’ll have guests. I used a lid of a mason jar to draw 19 circles. Cut out the circles using a sharp cutter. Don’t forget to add some cardboard on the bottom to avoid scratching surfaces.

Wrap the cardboard box using wrapping paper or poster paper. Then, score the paper in each of the circles like a pizza. The paper will work as flaps when we insert the cups.

I used paper cups with small goodies in them. I covered each of them with tissue paper and I used some masking tape to keep the paper in place. I used 3 layers of tissue paper, as it tends to be a bit translucent.

Here you can see how I stuffed items in cups, and covered each cup with tissue paper. The masking tape worked great to keep the cover in place!

The goodies I included in each of the cups were a small activity book, an eraser, a Lego like person, and some Pop Rocks candy. I found most of these items at the Dollar Tree store. The little activity books were a Facebook marketplace find we got for free!

Back of the piñata

TIP: you can reinforce the cardboard boxes using duct tape.

The kids had a lot of fun! Each of them got the same amount of goodies, and it was overall such a fun time for them! A win!

Robbie getting ready to punch his piñata

I hope you like this idea!

Michelle | con limón, please

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DIY biodegradable St. Valentine’s garland

Valentine’s Day is such a lovely holiday. In Mexico we call it Day of Love and Friendship. I love hearts and all the décor that comes with it. However, many of the décor is disposable, and even most things you can basically only use them once. I wanted to create something either made of paper, or even something sustainable and biodegradable! I saw this cute idea from Valerie Garcia back in December. She used orange peel to make gift tags! So I thought I could follow her lead and make a dry orange peel heart garland for Valentine’s Day!

You’ll need:

  • 4-5 navel oranges (big oranges work better)
  • Heart shaped cookie cutter
  • Jute cord or cotton string
  • Cooling rack and baking sheet

Preheat oven at 200°F (90°C). Cut the ends of your oranges, and slice the peel lengthwise. Peel it off carefully so that the peel stays as whole as possible. This way you’ll have more area to work with.

Place the orange peel with its inside up on a cutting board. Use a sharp cookie cutter to cut out heart shapes. Press hard with your palm to get an even cut. Place the hearts on a cooling rack on a baking sheet, or on your baking sheet using some parchment paper.

Place the tray in the oven, and bake for about 2h.

Remove from the oven, and use a needle and jute cord or cotton cord to string your hearts and form a garland as long as you need it. Et voilà! Your garland is ready to make your place look more charming!

NOTES:
* I recommend using bigger oranges so that you get more material to work with. Even bring your cookie cutter to the store, and buy some that are good for its size
* Don’t be tempted to add more temperature to the oven
* If you don’t have a cooling rack, don’t forget to use parchment paper on your baking sheet so that the shapes don’t get stuck on it
* Play around with this sustainable idea! You can buy grapefruit, red oranges, or even limes!

The best part about this DIY is that it is completely sustainable, biodegradable, and you get to eat your oranges! Click here to see what I did with mine. Also, you can totally adapt your garland to any other holiday. And even make ornaments and gift tags for Christmas!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Michelle | con limón, please

Some other garlands I’ve made before:

St. Valentine’s Day date idea at home

St. Valentine’s Day snack idea: St. Valentine’s popcorn

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For some more St. Valentine’s Day craft ideas go see what my friends shared!

Valentine’s Day Craft: Thumbprint Tree by Ally

DIY Valentine’s Day banner by Cammie

Simple Valentine’s Day Toddler Craft: Heart-Shaped Shortbread Cookies by Kirsten

Colorful Heart Garland for DIY Valentine’s Photos by Amy

Valentine DIY decor by Kimberly

Valentine’s Day Craft by Christa

Valentine Love Wands by mamallamallama

Yarn Crafts Valentines Edition by Stephanie

DIY Valentine’s Day Tree Decor by Alex

Valentines Day Craft for Kids by Alexa

Valentine’s Day Activities for Toddlers by Surabhi

How-to: dried orange slices for your winter décor

Winter comes and with it comes orange season! I love the smell of freshly cut slices of orange, but have you smelled them baked? Or have you ever boiled some orange rinds with rosemary or cinnamon? Well, that’s a post for another time. Today we’re baking them! Yep, we dehydrate them in the oven. Dried orange slices can be used for any type of décor around your home. I’d like to share with you my method for drying oranges.

Here’s what you’ll need

  • 5-7 oranges in different sizes
  • Baking sheets
  • Cooling trays

First, preheat your oven at 200F. Place the cooling trays on top of the cookie sheets. Using cooling trays on top of the baking sheets helps keeping the oranges from getting stuck, and it helps them dehydrate evenly. I wanted to take more advantage of the oven time, so I used our air fryer rack as well.

Cut the oranges in slices. Make sure they’re not too thin, maybe 1/5 of an inch would be good. Place the slices on top of the cooling trays. Make sure not to overlap them. Place them in the oven for 4 hours.
Yep, four hours. No, it’s not too long. It’s just the perfect time to get them dehydrated. Sit back and enjoy the smell!

Once your orange slices are ready, you can start decorating your home. Every year I like to replace the garland on our kitchen window. I also use them to make ornaments for our Christmas tree. Biodegradable is the new black! I had to make a whole round of orange ornaments this year since the previous ones were used for two years! They were looking kind of sad this year, to be honest.

Here’s this gallery with visual instructions for the garland:

NOTES:
* Do not try to save time adding more temperature to the oven. Be patient!
* Use a big needle to thread the slices either for a garland or ornaments
* You can add a pop of smell and color to the slices with rosemary, cinnamon, or my star anise!
* Use cotton cord, baker’s twine (I get my baker’s twine at the Dollar Tree), or use any other natural thread, such as jute string, which by the way looks so beautiful



I hope you get festive with this idea!

 Michelle | con limón, please


Mexican Fiesta | Piñata inspired party favor bags

Robbie’s third birthday was this month, and we decided to try a Mexican Fiesta theme this year! I got some cool little sombreros, a huge cactus balloon, and a taco balloon; a cute Mexican garland, and colorful paper flowers. When it was time to create the baggies for guests, I thought about classic Mexican piñatas, and decided to give these bags a try!

You’ll need:
♡ Paper bags (I used 5.25×2.75×8.5″ bags)
♡ Crepe paper
(if you need to cut the paper, make sure it’s cut into 2″ strips)
♡ Glue stick
♡ Scissors

I bought paper bags and crepe paper of different colors from the Dollar Tree store.

The crepe paper I bought was already cut in 2″ streams. For cutting the fringe, I took a strand, folded it, and then cut 3/4 of the way up into a wide fringe.

I proceeded to paste the strands overlapping them, one by one on the bags. I did not really follow a color pattern. I just made sure to put two of each color before switching color of the strips to make them pop more.

I cut any leftover paper from the side after I was done, so that the bags looked more even on the edges. Children won’t care if the paper doesn’t look perfect on their little piñata bags. No one would!

The day of the Fiesta!

I loved working on these bags for my son’s birthday party. I got tons of compliments, too!

I hope you make them! Let me know what you think!

Michelle | con limón, please.