You’ve got family coming to town for the holidays, and the kids are out of school too. It sounds like you might be faced with a few open afternoons and expectant faces! How about stashing a few new activity and craft books in the family supply center? That way, there’s always something for folks to do, and you get to sport that superparent cape with pride. Because being prepared is super indeed.

My Miniature Library

We are crushing on this mini-books-within-a-book from Laurence King Publishing. Designed with intricate details, each “book” comes with the supplies to make 30 mini books that range from classics like Hansel and Gretel and the Frog Prince to old nursery rhymes and even a few blank books for your little author to make her own. All she’ll need is glue, scissors, and a little patience. Plus there’s a mini bookshelf and the entire outside transform into a lovely library backdrop!

Ages: 7 & up.

Available at amazon.com, $15.61.

EtchArt: Hidden Forest

This new release from Quarto Books is quite possibly one of the coolest scratch-art books we’ve ever seen! There are nine beautiful woodland scenes, inspired by the tapestries and folk tales of the Middle Ages. Kids can choose to reveal the whole scene, or scratch here or there for their own unique take on each picture.

Ages: 6 & up.

Available at quartoknows.com, $14.99.

51 Things to Make With a Paper Plate

With 51 Things to Make with a Paper Plate your kids can craft up things like pirate hats, submarines and all sorts of animals, and you’ll finally get rid of those leftover party plates in your pantry. Also, the instructions are bright, cheery and easy to follow, which means you won’t be stuck at the table doing the work yourself.

Ages: 8 & up.

Available at amazon.com, $12.71.

Out of the Box

Already receiving a surplus of boxes from Amazon? Then Out of the Box by Jemma Westing is perfect timing. This activity and craft book is filled with 25 different projects that promote “out of the box” thinking with hands-on learning. The book includes a cardboard and toolbox info section, which will help you figure out what you need to get started, and the projects run the gamut from easy owls to incredible creations like a castle, a pharaoh's finery, and even a dome den! We especially appreciate the traceable templates found at the back of the book.

Ages: 7 & up.

Available at amazon.com, $13.99.

Clay Labs for Kids

Is your kid crazy for clay and polymer? Then this new clay lab workbook from art educator Cassie Stephens will keep him busy through the entire winter break. With over 50 projects that are designed to be safe enough to do right at home, your kids can make anything from a coil press pot that’s perfect for succulents (easy gift idea alert!) to stamped clay ornaments and even Jurassic fossil! Most of the tutorials are easy to follow, with maybe 8-10 steps, which is perfect for your budding sculpture artists.

Ages: 8 & up.

Available at amazon.com, $16.99.

Gift Boxes to Color for Christmas

Keeping the kids busy and knocking out some unique gift-wrapping supplies? Sign us up! Every single page of this new book is actually a gift box that can be punched out and colored on before being sent off to friends and loved ones this holiday season. The boxes are made from sturdy cardboard with pre-fab folds and come with gold stickers to complete the look.

Ages: 8 & up.

Available at amazon.com, $13.21

Which book would your kid like the best? Share with us in a Comment below.

— Gabby Cullen