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My three-year-old granddaughter has a phrase she uses when she has fun; she will exclaim "best day ever!" It always makes me smile. Her best days involve her Gigi and Papa spending one on one time with her and her cousins.

A perfect recipe for the best day ever is the beach. We recently vacationed with all of our grandchildren in Mexico. The day was picture-perfect, with blue skies and an ocean to match. The kids were so cute on the beach, all smiles and squeals jumping in the waves.

The sun and ocean can be exhausting, so I planned several crafts for the downtime when everyone needed a rest. We painted seashells and made candles with clamshells. We also did a plaster heart mold with the beautiful shells we collected. These crafts were so easy, and very little planning was required.



Assorted shells

Drop cloth

Googly eyes (optional)

Glitter (optional)


Wash the shells and let dry. Place a drop cloth on a table and pour the paint into small bowls. Let the kids have fun using their imagination with colors, glitter, and googly eyes.



Large shells

Wicks (from tea lights)

Essential oils (optional)

For this craft, I find the larger shells work best. We used clamshells. I purchased wax flakes from Amazon. You will also need a wick, and the easiest way is to remove the wicks from tea lights. They are the perfect size for this craft.


Place a pot of water on the stove over medium heat. Place your wax flakes in a measuring cup and place them in the water until melted. Add 5 - 8 drops of essential oil if desired.

Put the wick in the deepest part of the shell and carefully fill it with wax. Let the candle cool and set.



Moist sand



In semi-moist sand, draw a heart shape and scoop out the sand, so you have a 1/2 to 1-inch depression. Make sure your edges are firm, so the heart will hold it's shape.

Next, arrange your shells with the pretty side face down in your heart mold.

Mix the plaster of Paris according to the directions. You will need about 4 cups if you make an 8 to 10-inch heart.

Pour the plaster evenly covering all of the shells and filling the mold. Let the plaster set. This takes about an hour. Carefully lift it out of the sand once it is dry.

I was so pleased with the beautiful creations my grandchildren made. I have decorated my home with their sweet memories of our beach vacation.

Best Day Ever!

Gigi Lori

"“When was the last time you woke up and realized that today could be the best day of your life?” Steve Maraboli


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