Gwendolyn loves to paint. I rarely get out the paints for her, though, because: a) it’s messy, b) she quickly loses interest and it isn’t always worth the effort, and c) Josiah gets upset when I won’t let him
make a mess paint. I do, however, have sidewalk chalk that they will often use outside and it got me thinking of other outdoor crafts. I love when the weather is nice and playtime and meals can be taken outside, thereby eliminating much of the clean-up (unless, of course, your precious littles find a mud puddle and decide to sit in it… *sigh*).
I forget where I initially got the idea for sidewalk paint, and I can’t give credit to any one person because I looked at a number of different sites trying to find an easy recipe, and bookmarked a couple faves.
Basically, you mix cornstarch and water in a ratio of 1:1 (although I suppose you could play around with it; mine wasn’t an exact science) and add food coloring. I used a muffin tin to hold the different colors, but you could probably use cups – although they may tip over easily.
The kiddos had a blast painting the walkway, chalkboard, themselves - and the colors became more brilliant as it dried.
At one point Josiah grabbed my pant leg with his messy hand, much to my chagrin, but I was pleasantly surprised when the color just flaked off.
I did end up giving them a short bath before lunch since they insisted on coloring their hands and faces.
Note: I used Wilton food coloring that I already had on hand for coloring frosting, and it seemed to stain their skin somewhat. I didn’t bother with their hands, but on Gwen’s face I rubbed at it with some witch hazel, which did the trick of removing it. She commented that it didn’t smell good, however. :P
If you’ve already got some random pieces of sidewalk chalk lying around, try this neat idea for recycling the pieces into sidewalk chalk paint. At another mama’s suggestion, I’m also going to try my hand at homemade play dough, another medium which is best taken outside.