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Craft Clip: Plastic Tubs
by Jeanne Heiberg
Thoroughly wash all plastic tubs and then have fun making useful items.
Thoroughly wash all plastic tubs and then have fun making useful items.

* Cover the sides of a large plastic tub (such as a margarine tub) with violet-colored cloth, fill it halfway with sand, and place twigs and small stones in the sand to create a Lenten desert for your prayer table during Lent.
* Make a Lenten Almsgiving Treasury for your classroom. Place a tub (without the lid on it) on a large piece of aluminum foil. Pull the edges of the foil up over the sides and tuck the edges down into the tub. Cover the lid of the tub with tinfoil as well. Cut a slit in the lid and snap it onto the tub. Throughout Lent, have students write on small pieces of paper the things they do that constitute the giving of alms during Lent. Have them slip their “offerings” into the Almsgiving Treasury and bless the treasury in a special way during your last class before Easter.
* Make a small pot to start spring flowers or vegetables. Nail a small plastic container to a piece of scrap wood and fill the container with potting soil. Lightly press plant seeds (flowers or vegetables) into the soil and place the board where it will get sufficient light. Water plant as needed. (The hole created by the nail will provide drainage so be sure to place the board where moisture can drain without creating a problem. You can place craft sticks in the soil or glue them to the outside of the container and then cover the container with plastic wrap to create a greenhouse effect.)
* Glue ribbon, fabric, yarn, or gift-wrap around the edges of any size of tub to make a convenient storage bin for small items such as safety pins, paper clips, push pins, rubber bands, etc.
* Make a small basket by punching two holes near the top edge of the tub, opposite each other. Thread a piece of narrow ribbon through one hole from inside the tub. Tie a knot at the end of the ribbon that is inside the tub and pull the ribbon on through the hole so that the knot rests against the inside of the tub. Thread the other end of the ribbon through the other hole from the outside of the tub, and tie a knot. Pull the ribbon secure. This forms a handle. Decorate the sides of the basket to suit any special occasion.
* Make a space-saver shelf that can hold small items on another shelf. Decorate the sides of two large plastic tubs as desired. Fill both tubs with sand and place the lids on them. Place them on a shelf and lay across them a light board, heavy-duty cork board, or foam poster board.

Jeanne Heiberg is the author of
Advent Arts and Christmas Crafts (Paulist Press) and Advent calendars (Creative Communications). She has taught art, writing, creative catechetics, and meditation, and has directed parish catechetical programs.

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