I didn’t even know I had the capacity to make Space Playdough. My child is not yet of the age to be “into things.” Which is to say, at 18 months, he mostly likes to bang on things with other things and make large messes — no solidified hobbies yet.
That’s why we have 5-year-olds in our lives. 5-year-olds get INTO things — really, obsessively, into them. And in the case of the extra special 5-year-old who had a birthday party this past weekend, the current obsession is SPACE.
I asked the parents of this black hole-lover what the gift protocol was for the party and they said, “hand-me-down or handmade, please.” (I love Portland.) So, Orlis and I decided to make some Space playdough. Easy as pie.
I got the recipe for home-made play-dough from a friend, and it worked just perfectly, except that I did add a bit more flour during kneading to make it less sticky. I used India Tree all natural food coloring and I love the red that it made. Orlis’ favorite parts of the process were 1. wearing his apron and 2. stirring. Or, what he calls, “cook!”
Here’s the recipe:
2 cups of water
2 cups of flour
1 cup of salt
2 tablespoons cooking oil
2 tablespoons cream of tartar
and I added good old-fashioned glitter.
mix together all ingredients. cook in a saucepan on medium, stirring constantly until it is the consistency of thick mashed potatoes. keep adding food coloring until you have the color you like. spoon onto the table and knead until smooth. (add glitter while kneading).
That was fun. I like the idea of including Orlis as much as I can in the gift-giving process. And, my favorite toys are those that don’t tell the child how to play with them — that leave the play part up to the imagination of the player. Those toys that you look at and think, “what do you do with that?” Homemade play-dough checked all those boxes, so I think we’ll be donning our aprons a few more times this month and filling our shelves with the colors of the rainbow. Oh, yes.