Valentine’s day is coming up, and if you’re like me you help your kids decorate boxes to collect Valentines in at school. I never seem to have any shoe boxes around when I need them, so I came up with an alternative: use a dollar store trash bin! I turned a green bin into an alien for my son to use at his class party.
I really have to give one of my creative kids credit for the beginnings of this idea. One Easter I took all my kids to Dollar Tree to buy inexpensive baskets for an upcoming Easter egg hunt. My second oldest child decided all the baskets wouldn’t hold enough eggs, and his eyes lit up when he found this plastic trash bin. I laughed SO HARD watching him run around the Easter Egg Hunt with his trash can chucking eggs into the swinging lid. That’s where this idea began.
- New trash bin (from Dollar Tree)
- Styrofoam Ball
- Googly eyes
- Chenille sticks
Step one: Cut the styrofoam ball in half, and glue eyes to it. Glue the ball to the top of the trash pail.
Step two: Cut teeth and a tongue from felt. Hot glue these pieces to the lid.
Step three: Cut and twist chenille sticks to make alien arms. I glued pom poms to the ends to look like bulbous fingers. Remove the lid, bend the stick “arms” into the basket, and replace the lid.
The alien’s “mouth” swings open so classmates can deposit Valentines. Instead of aliens, this green pail would make a perfect frog or alligator. Use a red pail to make lady bugs or dragons, white or black pails to make penguins, and yellow pails to make lions! What other trash can critters can you think of?
PS. My son still has this on his desk one year later!