Despite my fondest hopes and wishes, Spud’s interest in “experiments” that we explored last summer has not waned. And FB, now a year older, is fully aboard the “experiment kit” train. Throughout the winter I did my best encourage their love of all things mixing and messiness, but it was trying.
Having just finished Lori Pickert’s Journaling Boot & Reboot Class
, I know I have to keep working at supporting my sons in this interest even though it is the thing I dread most every day. So, we went to the dollar store and I gave them a budget. *Miraculously*
FB chose the exact same items as Spud, so no worrying about whose things are whose (but who am I kidding? Even though everything is exactly the same
they have already found ways to tell them apart).
Each boy came home with a set of measuring cups, a colander, a plastic dishtub, a spatula, a silicone brush, and a large mixing spoon. To fill in the gaps I also raided my cupboard and added some plastic measuring pitchers, silverware, plastic spoons, and tin patty pans which have turned out to be a hot item.
Having depleted my stale/old food stores for last year’s kit
, this year’s ingredients are sort of ho-hum. But the boys seemed pretty happy with oatmeal, buckwheat, baking soda, bread flour, vinegar, semolina flour, and pickling spice in their jars and tubs.
Spud wasted no time getting to work and has mixed up several concoctions, setting them out in the sun to “bake”.
“Bread” is a popular item; I’ve also been offered “pickling spice cereal” and the hands-down favorite, lukewarm water and oatmeal–“It tastes just like oatmeal, doesn’t it, Mama?”
For my sanity, we have several guidelines in place:
- Everything must be done outside–on the porch or in the grass
- Perishable items like milk, eggs, etc., can only be used in the house and if you are following a recipe
- Clean up after yourself
- Kits will be refilled once a week or so–be judicious in your use of ingredients (Spud is doing well at this–FB on the other hand gleefully emptied all of his containers in one sitting)
Of course, they are still welcome to help me cook in the kitchen, and Spud is also interested in trying out some recipes for things like homemade bug itch sticks and chapstick.
Do you let your kids make “experiments”? How do you maintain a balance between encouraging them to explore and keeping things under control?