As cabin fever was setting in this afternoon, I realised I had no inclination to head out in the drizzle for a second time so I suggested to my restless toddler that we make some salt dough hearts for Valentines Day. ’Yaaay’ said he, so off we set with our flour, water and salt – trying out this new recipe, courtesy of Rainy Day Mum. Its a super quick salt dough, setting after 3 minutes in the microwave rather than hours in the oven so it was perfect for an impatient 3 year old.
Its simply -
1/2 cup of salt
1/2 cup of water
1 cup of flour
mix together, roll out and cut your shapes, place on a plate and zap for 3 mins, and hey presto – perfect salt dough lovelies ready to paint!
However, like so many things – our fun activity didn’t turn out as planned! My big boy had no interest in pressing the ingredients together into a ball to roll out, instead he preferred it in this crumby state, churning his little hands through it, pretending he was a digger picking up rocks and dropping them. Hey ho, I thought, lets go down this road instead, so I tipped the crumbs into a roasting tray (a bog standard roasting tray is perfect for containing messy play I find) and added in some of his favourite diggers and…bliss! He went on to spend over 2 hours engrossed in this game and I got to enjoy a hot cup of tea, complete with biscuit!
My big boy never did make the Valentine hearts but I couldn’t resist doing them myself when he went to bed so they will be ready for us to paint tomorrow.
Proof that play does not require expensive noisy toys – flour, water and salt did just the job today!