Over the summer holidays, I wanted to do more fun activities with Lily. Although days out and soft play centres are fun, I also wanted to have some activities we can do easily at home. So I have bought a range of craft/colouring things for Lily and me.
So normally, I don't let Lily play with Playdough. It sticks to the carpet, gets over everything and ends up a mixed up mess. Now that I have an easy to clean table cloth, I gave in. Now, it doesn't stick to anything and it's quick to clean up. We bought a range of tools to go with it like cutters, moulds and stamps and it's great to see how creative Lily can be with it. She has used it to show us what she has done, makes shapes, tell stories and loves using my Doctor Who cookie cutters to make her favourite monsters (she loves Dalek and Cybermen). She has also started using the playdough and it's accessories to imitating cooking processes. She loves helping us cook and helped with the making of a carbonara sauce and pasta. She used the dough to make pasta shapes and a sauce to tell the story.
Another brave step I took was to buy Lily a selection of paints. When you have a home with cream carpets, this is something you avoid like the plague! We went for the Crayola washable paint in the end as well as a paint holder and brushes from Wilkinsons. So far, I have been keener to do the painting! Lily loved it, but we very quickly ran out of room for drying our masterpieces (should have thought that through really).
These messy elements of being a parent are hard to do as there is a huge part of your parental subconscious telling you that it will make a mess and make the home environment unsafe, but then I think "to hell with that!" She's always safe at nursery with these activities and I'm sick of always being scared of something going wrong.
We spent an afternoon painting and although we won't be exhibiting along side Picasso and Van Gough anytime soon, I think we did a pretty good job! I like to call "expression art". I expressed my love for butterflies with my painting and Lily insipid her painting is a dinosaur (she loves Andy's dinosaur adventures on CBeebies).
I've also taken up trying to find some fun things to do via Pinterest (it's really good!) and found lots of fun ways to paint with bubble wrap. With a few sponges, toilet roll card and tape, we made a bubble wrap rolling pin and print sponges to make the best patterns. If you have younger children, this is great sensory activity as they can really explore the paint on its own, then the texture of it with the wrap.
Having all these crafts objects though has meant that we have had some lovely pieces of artwork for family. I know a lot of Lily's older relatives miss out on seeing her so much and they always like to have her pictures to show their friends. There's something quite lovely about that. People ask me what I do with all the poctures as they "are rubbis" or "you can't really do much with them" but it's a nice way of extending her development and fun with other people.
At the moment, a lot of shops have back to school sales and offers on things like pens, colour pencils and more so take advantage of it and get your own craft box going!