pretty paper hot air balloons
Activities and crafts

Kids Craft: Pretty paper hot air balloons

Creative mum-of-two Sadhbh Devlin shares her crafty tips on how to make a pretty paper hot air balloon with your kids.

How to make pretty paper hot air balloons

Hang these pretty hot air balloons by an open window and watch them turn gently in the breeze. They will have you dreaming of floating off into blue skies filled with fluffy white clouds!

pretty hot air balloons

You will need:

  • Coloured/Patterned Paper
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Needle and thread

pretty hot air balloons

1. Fold over a sheet of paper and draw the shape of half a hot-air balloon on.

2. Cut out the shape and use it as a template to make three more ‘balloons’. You can use all the same or choose a different colour/pattern for each one.

3. Glue the balloons together one by one, making sure they are properly aligned.

4. Next, cut out a strip of paper about 1.5 inches wide, bend into a loop and glue in position – this will be the basket.

5. Use the needle and thread to attach the basket to the balloon and to create a length by which to hang your balloon.

pretty hot air balloons

pretty hot air balloons

A few of these balloons hanging from a length of driftwood, would make a gorgeous mobile in a child’s bedroom!

Find more from Sadhbh on her award-winning blog

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Q. I’m would like to start an exercise programme that will benefit my emotional health as much as my physical health, but I don’t know which type of class would be best. Should I consider choosing from yoga, pilates, tai chi, or could you recommend a class, please?

A It’s great that you have decided to get into exercise. The benefits to you are going to be great. You’ll sleep better, have more energy, better skin, reduced stressed, not to mention all the amazing physical benefits of your clothes fitting better, and looking healthy, trim and toned! My advice to you would be to try them all. Even if some don’t offer pay-as-you-go sessions, if you get in touch directly with the instructor, they will almost always let you try it out first to see if it’s for you. All of the above things that you mentioned are great for mental health, so it really will be a personal preference as to which you go for. On top of the classes you mention, all forms of exercise will give you great mental rewards so consider the not so obvious interval training sessions, bootcamp, and circuits too, as you will also feel on top of the world after a class like that.


Tuna fish cake recipe

A great recipe for all the family – these fishcakes can be served to babies over 12 months old – so no cooking separate meals!



Q My son is 18 months old and has just started saying his first words. It is an extremely exciting time in our house and my husband and I are eager to encourage his speaking as much possible. What advice would you give us on how we can foster this without bombarding and confusing him?

AThere is nothing better than hearing your baby begin to talk. All the hard work you have put in over the last two years is coming back tenfold.
Toddlers will vary significantly with ability and speed of which they talk however a guide would be about 50 words by 2 years of age. The most important thing to watch for is that your baby/toddler is cooing and babbling and begins to string sounds together like “Mama/Dada” They should have a wide range of speech sounds and like to imitate you and things they hear.
There are many ways that you can promote Speech and Language development at home:
1. Slowing down your own speech and taking time over conversations with your little one. Every day is a new experience when you are 18 months, nappy changes, bath time, baking a cake brings endless opportunity for you to interact and offer new words for them to hear and repeat. Make eye contact, smile and use exaggerated tones to keep things interesting and fun for your tot.
2. Review the toys that you have on offer to your tot and ensure that they give plenty of open ended play opportunities. Role play is a wonderful way to allow children to take the lead. Kitchens with lots of plates, cups and pots. Fill the pots with dry pasta and allow your child to cook and serve you. Playdoh, painting, gardening and sandpits are also great for allowing your child to take the lead and babble about what they are doing. Read plenty of books together and point and allow them time to answer any questions that you ask.
3. Limit screen time. Overuse of televisions and iPads do not give your child opportunity to interact in a two way manner.
4. Ask your child lots of open ended questions “What’s that?” “Where are we?” Point at things they know the answer to for boosting confidence (Car/ Car, etc.) When they don’t know the answer, explain it to them. Limit baby talk and speak clearly with good pronunciation, remember you are the teacher and they will copy you.
If you are concerned about your child’s speech and language development, be sure to speak with your GP or developmental Health Nurse. They are very skilled at understanding the difference between speech delays and spotting something that may require professional attention.
Enjoy watching their little brains absorb the world around them and listen to what they have to say. It won’t be too long before they won’t stop talking to you, asking “Why Mummy/ Daddy?” every 5 minutes….