Friday, 14 September 2018

Edible painting with babies

Absolutely an association which daunted me as a first time mum. Child and paint. A scenario that filled my mind with mess, chaos and an awful mess to clean up at the end.

But, when messy play made it's first appearance at home, both me and my little lady had an absolute blast!

Messy play is an absolutely crucial element for babies and toddlers as they learn a huge deal about textures, hand coordination, colour and so much more. Most importantly above all that ... it's an amazing activity for bonding, having fun and staying away from computer screens.

Obviously there are age recommendations for painting, but once your baby is comfortably eating solids there's absolutely no harm in slowly introducing edible paints. The ideal consistency for the paint is thicker than the usual paint you're probably thinking of and more like custard. There's loads of recipes online which recommend you to use ingredients like blueberries or cornflour to help thicken and colour your edible paint but I don't have the money to buy loads of 'ingredients' to make paint. So my option? Yoghurt and food colouring.

All food colouring has a potential staining effect so I use it in extreme moderation, not that it needs much anyway. Plus washing towels etc straight after eliminates some of the danger of long lasting stains. 

All I did to make the 'paints' was separate a cheap 49p tub of low fat plain yoghurt into three bowls, add some colouring, mix and we're ready to go. Easy as that.

Clothes won't like the food colouring much so lose them. I left my little lady in her nappy and put on painting apron so she could learn to associate the apron with messy play. A bath is obviously a must after painting .... maybe for you too.

If you're looking for ideas on what to paint, you can try handprint pictures like butterflies, or make flowers using your hands and your little one's. 

Preserving the pictures isn't the best idea as they're made with food but take some photos on a white background and have them printed so you can display baby's first painting session.

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