As my daughter is becoming more curious about her world and is a lot more active than she used to be, I have been trying to find lots of things to keep us busy.

Yesterday, I decided to let her paint.  I knew it was going to be messy but I also knew she’d have fun.  And she did.

I saw this activity on a friend’s of a friend’s blog.  She said her daughter didn’t want to eat it after one little taste.  I thought it would be the case with my daughter, but as you can see, she loved eating it.  I don’t know why though – it was pretty gross.

The dough:  I combined water and flour in each bowl to make them different textures/consistencies.  Then I added a drop of food coloring.  Note:  make sure to not add too much water.  I would put the flour in first.

The table:  I put aluminum foil on the table so she could have a nice slick surface to paint on.  Plus, if you put a few drops of water on the table and then put the foil down, it makes it so it doesn’t slide around.  The girl I saw do this, however, put wax paper which would work just as well – I just didn’t want to have to tape it onto the table.

The chair:  Definitely put down something on the chair – I used a garbage bag.

The child:  I would suggest using a bib or a shirt that can get messy.  She just had a diaper on with a bib.

Things I will do differently next time:

  • Put a cover on the chair from the beginning and cover the chair completely – the chair got really messy.
  • Pour flour into a bowl and then add water – I did it the opposite way and it didn’t work very well.  It was too hard to get it a good consistency without adding a little more flour, a little more water, a little more flour, etc. before finding the consistency I wanted.
  • Put the paints directly onto the foil instead of letting her take it out of bowls.  She threw the bowls and it created quite the mess.  However, she really liked looking in the bowls to see the different colors.
  • Mop floors after she’s done painting.  I mopped the floors during her nap and then after she woke up, she painted.  It was a bad, rookie mistake.
  • Have a bath ready for when she’s done.  I had nothing ready for a bath and a really messy girl.
  • Pull her hair back into a ponytail.  She had all sorts of “paint” in her hair when she was done and I was still finding it hours later.

This was a fun, simple, and cheap activity that kept her quite entertained.  I can’t wait to do it again with a few minor changes.

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