Todays post is all about having fun with your kids! It is cold and snowy here, so I am always looking for fun things to do inside. Here is just one of many to come…Homemade play dough!!! Why homemade, you ask? Because it is far superior to the store-bought in cost and texture, and it doesn’t stick onto clothes and furniture, or stain like the store bought stuff. I also love that it gets the kids in the kitchen doing good ol’ hands on learning. In addition, if my kids eat some, no biggie! I know exactly what’s in it! There is no baking, and you can whip this up in five minutes for something quick if the kids are getting stir crazy in the house. So here is my favorite homemade recipe for you to try. I found it at theimaginationtree.com. It’s so easy that now big sister makes it, and it’s so fun that everyone plays with it!
Here’s what you need:
2 cups white all-purpose flour
2 Tbs oil (I usually use olive oil, but today I used avocado. Any vegetable oil would be fine, just NOT coconut)
½ cup salt
2 Tbs cream of tartar
1 ½ cups boiling water
Food coloring (we do not eat food dyes, but I keep it on hand for stuff like this)
Easy To Make Instructions:
1) Mix the flour, salt, cream of tartar and oil together in large bowl. Little hands can help pour all these in after you’ve measured. Bigger kids can be the ones measuring it all out. Math lesson!
2) Boil your water on the stove, and then add the dye to the water. Let the kids pick what color they want and talk about what colors you need to combine to make that color. Art lesson!
3) Add the hot colored water into the bowl with dry ingredients. Make sure little hands stay away from the bowl as you pour. Lesson in not touching hot water! Seriously, my two-year old learned it today. She’s okay, but now she knows to lean back while hot water is being poured.
4) Stir it all together until it is combined. The dough will be a bit sticky at this point. Again, if you are having little hands help mix, make sure it is cool enough before they help.
5) Allow it to cool. Then you will want to knead it on the counter until all the stickiness is gone. Do this until it is the perfect consistency.
6) Get out your play dough toys or cookie cutters and let them play! Even my twelve-year-old likes to sit with the youngsters and play!
7) When they are all finished, put it in a container and store it in the refrigerator. This should last you several more play times.
There is so much learning going on in their little brains when they play with play dough, so I always offer this as one of the first things to let my two-year old do every morning after breakfast. She is very, very hands on, so this saves my house from being destroyed and Mommy from going crazy. I also will give her a small ball of it to play with in her hands while we read books, if I’m trying to do some school with the other kids, or I just need her to sit down and chill for a little while. Tell me I’m not the only one with a child like this! Haha!!
I hope you and your children enjoy making this…and hey, why don’t you take a break, Mama, and sit down and play with them. I promise you that ten years from now you will not wish you had cleaned more dishes or done more laundry. Nope, do what matters most today and play!