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What better way to entertain your kids for the day than a carnival?  But instead of spending tons of money, we decided to get creative and make our own carnival at home.

To get started, we made a costume for daddy to wear as he ran all of our carnival games, which included a hat and a cane.  All you need to make your own is black construction paper or card stock, scissors, and staples or tape.

For your hat, cut out a top hat shape, then cut several 1-2 inch strips of paper.  Tape or staple the paper together, measure the person’s head, and connect the two ends together.  Tape or staple the top hat to the band.

To make a cane, we simply cut a piece of paper in half, rolled the paper up and taped it.  Then we taped the two smaller canes together to make a longer one.


Clara wanted to play her carnival games outside.  It was pretty wet, so we decided to play on the sidewalk.

First in our lineup was mini golf!  I loved watching daddy try to help Clara learn to swing the club.  All the pieces are made of foam so they are soft and safe.  And it is really easy to assemble and disassemble.  Clara loved the circus theme and colorful designs and had a blast trying to hit the ball by herself.  This game is also great for development of eye-hand coordination!

mini golf Carnival Pic 8

Next was ALEX’s bean bag toss game, Monster Toss.  Clara was so cute with this game.  She immediately ran up and gave each monster a kiss! Clara was a little young to understand the throwing concept, but had a blast placing the bean bags into the holes.  The monster board includes three fun monsters, worth 10, 20, and 30 points.  It also comes with a removable stand and 6 bean bags. It’ s also great for development of eye-hand coordination, as well as ball skills.

Carnival Pic 9 bean bag toss

Our last game was a homemade one.  In an attempt to replicate the fish bowl carnival game – you know the one where you have to throw the ping pong ball into the fish bowl to win a fish – I gathered 6 disposable cups and filled them halfway with water.  Then we placed a few of Clara’s bath toys in some of the cups.  This game was tougher than I thought, even for daddy, but everyone had a blast with it!

Carnival Pic 11 make your own children's carnival at home

For prizes, I simply got a shoe box and filled it up with dollar toys from the local dollar store.  After each game, we let Clara pick a prize for her awesome effort!

After our games were over, it was time for a snack.  We chose to make popcorn, a traditional carnival snack, to munch on.  And for a healthier option, we also made frozen yogurt pops.  The frozen pops are simple to make.  We used popsicle molds but you could also use ice cube trays.  We mashed up our favorite fruits, mixed them with our favorite flavor of yogurt, and froze them the night before our carnival fun.

homemade frozen yogurt pops

This was an easy way to get Clara outside and away from the television!

It was also great family fun and a wonderful way to spend some quality time together!


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