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Kids Craft – Preserving memories with salt dough

Submitted by on Tuesday, 7 October 20084 Comments

With the current state of the economy, we all need to look for things to do with our kids that are still fun and creative, but don’t cost an arm and a leg to do.  So cross that X-Box off your shopping list and add some flour and salt.  The X-Box doesn’t let your kid be as creative as flour and salt do anyways.  I ask you, who needs Grand Theft Auto when you can have Hand-Print Salt-Dough?  Who needs Warcraft when you have Kids Crafts?

Seriously though, this is a really nice idea for something you can do with the kids to get them started mixing

Salt dough today, walk of fame tomorrow...

Salt dough today, walk of fame tomorrow...

and mashing things.  It is easy and cheap to do, and it gives you and your kids a nice little memory as well.  You can even teach them about fossilization at the same time, if they are old enough to understand what fossilization is.  Otherwise, just mention dinosaurs and they will be happy to participate.

The idea is simple:  make some salt dough, put your child’s hand or foot print in the salt dough, let it dry, and hang it on the wall for everyone to see.  Then in 13-15 years, when your child brings home his or her first girlfriend or boyfriend, put it on the coffee table as an item for discussion.  Its all about having fun, right?

Here is what you will need:

  • 2 cups of flour
  • 1 cup of salt
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 teaspoon of oil
  • 1 baking sheet

Mix all the ingredients together really well.  Place the resulting dough in a freezer bag and toss it in the fridge for 2 hours.  This will let it rest and also dissolve the salt crystals.  Speaking of rest, go take a nap, you’ve worked hard.

After your two hour nap, haul yourself out of bed and haul the dough out of the fridge.  Add flour or water to the dough as necessary to get the right consistency.  You don’t want it to be too sticky or wet, but not too dry or crumby either.  You’ll know when you’ve got it.

Roll the dough on the baking sheet into whatever shape tickles your (or your child’s) fancy.  Make sure it is about 2 or 3 centimeters (about an inch) thick.

Ask Junior to leave his or her mark on your household’s dough of fame.  This can be a hand or foot print, or both.  You can use a toothpick to carve in a name and date, and even poke a hole in the top if you want to hang it up.

Place your masterpiece in the oven to bake at 60 degrees Celsius (140 degrees Fahrenheit) for 3 hours or let it dry at room temperature on both sides for 4-5 days.

You can then hang it on the wall, put it on a shelf, bring it to the office, or use it as an over-sized key chain.  Whatever you like.  What is important is that you had fun, you made a memory and you took a nap.  And you did it all for less than the price of a cup of coffee.

Join the jam and tell us your ideas for fun, inexpensive and creative crafts you do with your kids.  If you make a salt dough memory and want to share it, submit it to me and I will post it!  Or post it on your blog and I will link to it!

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