Recycled Cardboard Disney Fund Bank

When my family decided to start planning a Disney trip for when my youngest is five, I knew we should start saving now.  I also wanted to get the kids involved to encourage working together as a family toward a common goal. I also wanted a way to keep them excited while we’re waiting for the years to pass until trip time. I love reusing cardboard in my projects and knew I wanted to use it for this recycled cardboard Disney fund bank. When we buy things that come in cardboard packaging and I can’t stand not seeing it put to use. 

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Pink Square bank with text overlay - Recycled Cardboard Disney Fund Bank

Flipping through a magazine, I saw a photo of kids playing with this adorable giant toy block and the light bulb went off. I could make a large recycled cardboard bank that we could all pitch money into! It could be pretty, functional, and recycled. Yay! Make your own Disney fund bank with these easy-to-follow instructions and start planning your Disney vacation today!

Recycle Cardboard Disney Fund Bank Materials


Step 1

Cut out 6 squares of cardboard roughly the same size. Don’t worry if they aren’t exact.  When you put them together later, it will hide imperfections.


Paper Covered Cardboard Squares

Step 2

Glue your paper to the cardboard squares.  I put my glue tape on the cardboard square and stuck it to the paper.  Then I cut out the cardboard square from the larger piece of paper.


Attached colorful squares splayed on wood background

Step 3

Starting with your bottom square, tape one of your cardboard squares (decorative side out) to each side of the bottom square. (See the picture above.)


Taped edges of square cardboard bank

Step 4

Fold up the sides of the box and begin taping each side together as well, forming a block.


Top of Bank with hole in the center

Step 5

Take your sixth cardboard square and cut a rectangular slit out of the top.  I just went from the back side with my scissors and then taped up the hole to clean it up some.


Quarter next to hole on top of bank

Step 6

Tape the last cardboard square to the top of your box.

Step 7

Write your savings goal on the outside of the box in pretty lettering.  If you don’t like your handwriting, you can always use stickers to do this.


Pink Square Bank with Minnie Mouse on it

It is that easy to make your own Disney fund bank.  It’s so pretty and you can personalize it with your family’s favorite Disney characters.  Is your family planning on taking a vacation to Disney?  Have you been recently and have recommendations on must-see attractions?  Let me know in the comments!

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Pink Square bank with text overlay - Recycled Cardboard Disney Fund Bank

Kid Made Mother’s Day Storybooks

Last year for Mother’s Day I wanted to come up with gifts for the grandmothers that were not only meaningful but also that my oldest son could help construct.  He was five at the time and still learning to read and write so I also wanted to find an activity that helped him hone those skills.  The result?  Child written and illustrated storybooks! These kid made Mother’s Day storybooks are a wonderful and meaningful gift surprise for moms and grandmas this year.

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Child and woman reading book together with text overlay - Kid Made Mother's Day Storybooks

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Materials for Mother's Day Storybook

Kid Made Mother’s Day Storybook Materials:

Step 1: Pick your story

Again, because my son was only five when we did this, he needed a little more direction than an older child would need.  Because we wanted it to be personal, we decided that the first book would be about why he loved his grandma.

Step 2: Pre-Write

The albums standardly come with 20 pages and each page has white inserts (10 inserts in all).  So when the book is finished you should have 9 pages of writing + 1 title page.  Before even starting on the writing and coloring part with your child, sit down together and come up with 9 sentences that fit the theme of your story.

Since my son was still learning to read and write letters, I had him dictate to me these sentences and I wrote them down on a sheet of paper.  I asked him repeatedly “Why do you love Grandma?” to prompt him to stay on topic with his responses.  Then I neatly printed each answer.  It is important to print them neatly so that your child can later copy them from the list.

Some of his adorable answers included:


Blank White Paper Laying on Open Scrapbook

Step 3: Getting started on your inserts

Pull out all of the inserts out of the album and place the book to the side.  Now have your child write the sentences on one side of each sheet with his or her crayons.  At this point it doesn’t matter what order as long as one side is left blank.  Make sure that the 10th page includes the title of your story.

Older children can write the sentences on their own with you just reading them back to them.  With beginning writers, like my son was, letting them copy what you have written is fine.  They are still practicing writing their letters and the repetitive use of the words will also be helping them learn to read those words.

Step 4: Ordering your pages

Before you move on to illustration, it is important to put your pages in order.  Starting with the title page, place all of the inserts together with the writing side facing up.  Once you’ve done that, flip the pages as if you were reading a book to ensure they are all in order.  It should be:


Open museum pages in kids mothers day book

Step 5: Illustrate

This is the part that younger children tend to enjoy the most.  Keeping the pages in order (again, flipping them as though reading a book) have your child illustrate the blank pages with the corresponding sentences.  For instance, on the blank page next to “We play hide-n-seek” my son drew a picture of himself hiding in a closet.  I cannot stress enough the importance of keeping the pages in order at this point to make sure that the pictures are on the appropriate corresponding pages.


Open play pages in kids mothers day book

Step 6: Finalizing your book

Once all of the pages are finished slide them back into the page protectors, again taking care to keep them in order.  If during this step you find that the pictures have somehow gotten messed up, don’t worry.  You can always just redraw or rewrite the corresponding page on a separate blank white sheet and put it in the page protector… I just like to save money whenever possible, and didn’t want to use the extra paper.

That’s it!  You’re done.  Now you have a hand-made meaningful gift that your children’s grandparents will cherish for years. They are easy to make but can require a lot of patience when working with little ones (older children can take more personal responsibility over the project).  We had to make 3 and I chose to spread the entire project out over a week.  You can tailor this to your child, of course.  If he/she starts getting distracted or uncooperative, set it aside and go back to it the next day.

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Child and woman reading book together with text overlay - Kid Made Mother's Day Storybooks