Thursday, October 23, 2008

Crafts to While the Day Away

I was baby-sitting a friend's kids today, and it was the witching hour where everyone should be taking naps, but they were having too much fun together to be able to settle down. First, we headed out to the playground to burn off some energy which always results in too-tired boys with hurt feelings (or bodies). They were playing chase, always with the youngest and slowest being 'it', which brought back memories of the way we treated my little sister (except instead of being the 'scary monster' as this boy was, we made her be the 'naked man' who was chasing us. Hmmm...perhaps ideas were being fed to us via kids with older brothers?...poor Boober.)

After we headed inside, and snacks were distributed, I was wracking my brains for something they could do that would involve the smallest amount of interfering in one another's personal space. I then remembered the bright pink index card I keep on my fridge for just such occasions labeled "Cooked Playdough From Granny". A-Ha! I let the oldest pick the color and away I went.

Gathering ingredients, I pulled the container of table salt out of the cupboard that was circa 1912, and realized we had only about a tablespoon left, but needed half a cup. Curses! Foiled again! Luckily J was home and offered to run to Stop N Shop and I placated the boys with Ring Pops until he returned.

Now, I am typing away, as they're busily occupying themselves with what looks like a giant blob of bubblegum. If you ever need a quick, easy and fun rainy day project, here you go:

Granny's Cooked Playdough

Mix 1/2 c. salt, 1 c. flour and 2 tsp. cream of tartar in a pan. Add 1 c. water, 1 Tbsp. oil, food coloring and the optional flavoring such as mint or orange extract (although I never do this because I don't want them to think about eating it more than they already will.)

Stir CONSTANTLY over a low heat until it forms a stiff ball around the spoon. (about 10 minutes, but it feels like an eternity)

Never Gonna Happen!

Ohhh! Happened. Turn out onto counter and knead until cool(ish) depending on how antsy the kids are.

Voila! An activity so easy, it may even qualify for Crafts for the Clueless


Crafty Mama said...

I've been looking for a recipe like this, thanks! Will turned two this week and I tried playdough but he just wanted to eat it. Least this is a little friendlier and if he eats it I'll get over it. Nice color by the way....looks like you're making your own Bubble Yum!

Alex Elliot said...

Crafts for the Clueless will look into this! YS was eating the playdough this evening so food extract wasn't needed. They had a great time!

Amanda Villagómez said...

I love mom's recipe. That was so much fun growing up! I will have to do this with the girls soon. It has been fun to see all your crafts lately!