Monday, March 7, 2011

Playdough Time!

As Hoot gets older, we are always on the look out for a craft or project or activity that she can try, and I try to have one little "surprise" each day for her.  She loves projects - she is her mama's girl, afterall.

Sometimes this is stickers, coloring with markers or crayons, painting, or even just getting out a toy we haven't played with in a while. ( I am crazy about the toys - we have a toy rotation because I can't stand having ALL of the toys out and seeing her playing with NONE of them.  But that is a different blog post. LOL)

As you know, in my previous life, it was in my job description to come up with such projects for kids - mostly kids Hootie's age or around there.  That doesn't make it easier to always have a little something up my sleeve, but I get by with a little help from my friends. ;)

In this case, it is my friend, Timbra. I went to High School with her and I have many fond  memories of good times in theater class.  Now, she is a mom of two little ones herself (who just happen to be about the same age difference as my little ones will be) and she is always coming up with something fun for her crafty little brood to do.  Check out her blog, La-de-la-de-da.  Not only does she have great ideas, but her kids are really funny and her stories make me laugh.  :)

At any rate, last night on Facebook, Timbra mentioned making some Playdough - and a little light bulb went off in my head.  Hayden is old enough for that.  So that was our project today - Hoot's first Playdough.

After a minor disagreement about whether or not it was to be eaten, we were off to the races.

 Piper even popped over to make sure we weren't eating anything delicious without her.  Hayden promptly yelled, "Get!! Get!!" every time Piper made a noise or moved a little.  She  didn't want Piper to steal her dough.  Poor Piper. (Isn't she the most adorable and pathetic little creature? I think so.)

 This actually kept her busy for a good half hour or more, allowing me to cook dinner without a screaming banshee attached to my leg.  So Playdough gets two thumbs up from me.  And I think she liked it, too.

Bonus: Hoot even cleaned up her own mess.  (btw, I think that these are the same kind of Playdough toys I had when I was a kid.  <3!!)

 And what mom isn't on board with that!?  :)

Here is our Playdough recipe if you don't have one of your own yet:

2 cups flour
2 cups warm water
1 cup salt
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon cream of tartar (do you use cream of tartar for anything besides making Playdough?)
1 packet of unsweetened Kool-Aid, your choice of color/flavor

Mix all of the ingredients together in a saucepan, and stir over low heat. The dough will begin to thicken until it resembles mashed potatoes.  Well, blue mashed potatoes in our case... LOL This step smalls good too  becasue of the Kool-Aid. :)

When the dough pulls away from the sides and clumps in the center, as shown below, remove the pan from heat and allow the dough to cool enough to handle.

IMPORTANT NOTE: if your playdough is still sticky, you simply need to cook it longer!
Keep stirring and cooking until the dough is dry and feels like playdough.
See, easy-peezy! Enjoy! :)

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