By Fredrica Syren:
With three kids, I feel as if I’m constantly on the go with cleaning, feeding, dressing, changing diapers, picking up toys, and of course — the fun of cleaning it up again. My kids have tons of energy and imagination, but there are times when they look at me with their puppy eyes and say, “Mom, I’m bored.” Yup, a busy mom’s favorite words, right? NOT! There are times when you just cannot play with them and you need them to play more independently. Well, after three kids, I now have a few tricks for easy and fast crafts in my back pocket that I can use for times like these.
Salt Dough — My mom used to make this for me and I have made it for my kids. It’s perfect because it does not take long to whip up and usually you have these ingredients at home already. The best part is that kids usually can entertain themselves with it for a while and, with a little imagination and cookie cutters, create all kinds of fun things.
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup salt
- ½ cup water
- 1 Tbsp. oil (canola, olive or coconut)
Mix and blend until you have a dough.
Colored Epsom Salts — I don’t know how or from whom I learned this, but my daughter particularly loves this craft and has so much fun with it. Basically, you need a spoon, a glass jar, Epsom salts and food coloring. Blend the salts with a few drops of food coloring. You want to make a few different colors so the child and can mix them. Place each colored salt into different bowls, and give the artist a spoon to pour salt mixes into a glass jar and make fun color patterns.
Other Ideas that Are Not Crafts
Hide-and-Go-Seek — I have made it a sport to play this game in order to get chores done around the house. As I’m counting, I will cut veggies for dinner and while I’m looking, I’m tidying up the house. I know it sounds crazy but, hey, it works☺
Easter Egg Hunt — Ok, so they’re not really Easter eggs that I hide. Instead, I hide one particular toy per child in fun creative places while they all wait in another room. They will have tons of fun looking for them, giving me a few minutes to get some chores done. Usually they can play this game for a while.