With schools being dismissed for the Covid19 Pandemic, parents are scrambling to teach and entertain the little ones at home.
I know some children who need a little bit of extra entertainment and distraction while their mom isn’t feeling well and dad has to work outside the home.
Later today, I’ll make a little bag of fun things for them and leave it on their doorstep – and run! In addition to crayons, coloring books, markers, yarn, scissors, stickers and whatever else I can find, I’m going to include a batch of homemade play-dough. My mother made it for me all the time when I was a little girl and I loved it, especially when it was still warm, right off the stovetop.
My mom would also add a splash of peppermint extract to make it smell good, but that’s totally optional. To keep the food coloring off your hands, you can put the warm dough into ziplock bags and let the children knead the color into the dough while their hands are protected.
I used Wilton paste colorings, so I smeared it on the dough with a toothpick that could be tossed out.
If you store this dough in plastic zippy bags, it lasts a long time and stays very soft.
Don’t have cream of tartar? Call your neighbor and see if they’ll toss you some over the fence.
I remembered my old church cookbook – “At the Table” from the First Presbyterian Church in Marietta, GA. My friend Judie and I, both teachers who were at home with our new babies, submitted recipes for craft projects.
The air dry clay often needs to be put into a low-heat oven to help it dry, depending upon the humidity levels that day. We would make little beads, poke holes in them, and when dry, paint them to string on necklaces. We also made Christmas ornaments. Judie’s finger paint recipe is a good one to try as well.
I hope you are all safe and feeling well. I guarantee if you make a batch of homemade play-dough, even if you don’t have any children to share it with, you’ll feel better. Something about “play” is essential to our lives. Keep moving around, call friends and find joy in little silly things . . . like play-dough!