Last week, I figured out all of the fun stuff that I was hoping to do with my kids this spring. One of the big ones was that I wanted to work on my own avoidance of things that make messes… and I wanted to let the kids loose on finger painting.
I hadn’t done finger painting since Norton was maybe a year and a half. It was long overdue. I approached the idea with Norton while Eudora was taking a nap. I’d asked him if he wanted to finger paint. He held up his hands and said, “Mommy, I can’t paint fingers.” Ha.
I got out a bit of plastic sheeting that was cut to fit the table and spread it across like a table cloth. Then I set to work on making the finger paints.
I use a recipe that resembles making ooblek (the non-Newtonian solid made of cornstarch and water). Ingredients are:
4.5 cups of boiling water
2 cups of corn starch
1 cup of cold water
Mix the corn starch and cold water together while the water boils. At first it’s like concrete. Add the boiling water and continue to stir until it’s of an even consistency. Then split into containers and add your food coloring. Since I used Ziploc containers, I just squirted an entire bottle of food coloring in, closed the container, and shook it up. I ended up with some extra undyed paint that’s sitting in another bucket.
To keep the paints from getting dumped out or mixed into brown (since Eudora loves to pour things from one container into another), I poured a bit of each of the four colors into ice cube trays: one tray per child so there’d be no fighting. And to minimize the mess, I gave out cotton swabs to use as paint brushes.
As you can see, much finger painting fun was had.
Clean up was pretty easy. After they were done finger painting, I put them both in the bath. I took off shirts before the painting started so that nothing was ruined. I did make one small mistake, though: I left Eudora in her Ella Bella Bum diaper instead of changing her into a Sunbaby. She did get paint on the diaper, but I was able to get everything out with some warm water and Buncha Farmer Stain Stick in the bathroom sink.
Have you tried finger painting with your kids? How did you minimize the mess?