Origami and Paper Crafts  
When I was probably too young by today's standards, I did a lot of babysitting. The parents I worked for told me that they preferred a younger girl to baby-sit because the older teenagers had too many distractions. That was back in the days when personal responsibility was valued and liability wasn't so much of an issue.

Someone, my parents or the neighbors, figured out that for a very small fee per family, they, the grown-ups, could have a block party and leave me in one of the nearby houses babysitting ALL of the children.

I had a blast!  They paid me enough money to order my very own pizza, via delivery, and have a bit left over.  I'd have done it just for the pizza! It was a breeze to entertain the kids - mostly.

After a while, some of the little ones got bored, and demanded more entertaining than I knew how to provide. That's when I first valued that incredible skill my father sat down and gave me one day when I had a vile cold and my mother couldn't stand to chase me with another tissue: Origami. Thanks Dad!

It's been fun making origami birds, nests,  and eggs (a.k.a. origami paper balls or balloons) ever since. Teaching my children to make them was great fun! To this day, I find myself grabbing a bit of paper and making a paper toy to amuse a bored or sad child every so often. You'll be surprised how often it comes in handy to know how to make origami.

Origami Bird, Egg, Nest, and Chick
Origami Bird, Egg, Nest, and Chick
Origami Bird, Egg, Nest, and Chick
Let's start with something simple like this paper egg. It's a multi-use paper toy. Make it alone, and it's a paper ball or a paper balloon. You can make one in moments and toss it to that screaming child on an airplane or waiting room for a moment of silence.

Each of these origami toys begins with a square piece of paper.  Click here to see how to turn your rectangular page into a square.

Click here, or on the egg photo, to go to my page on how to make an origami egg.

The nest is is another easy origami toy to make.  In a pinch, it doubles as a paperclip holder or a candy dish. Click here, or on the nest photo, to go to my page on how to make an origami birds nest.

You're and expert now, right? Ok, pull out your patience and click here, or on the bird photo, to learn how to make an origami bird.

This one is extremely cool, and will bring lots of smiles from the little tots AND the adults! When you pull on it's tail, its wings flap!

Origami Bird, Egg, Nest, and Chick
Hint: Check out your local craft store for colored or textured paper to make this lots more fun.
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