Baxter is finally old enough to start joining Tallulah in her crafty/sensory adventures. I have had several pasta projects pinned that I knew Tallulah would enjoy and thought spring break would be the perfect opportunity to play “Rainbow Spaghetti Store” as it was named. I wanted Baxter to be included in the fun so when I recently saw a blog post where a mom popped her baby in a high chair and sat down a pile of cold spaghetti noodles for them to play with I was off to the grocery store to buy a giant bag of pasta and some neon food coloring.
As it turns out spaghetti is quite the crafty noodle. We ended up breaking this up into 5 different activities.
Spaghetti Noodle Threading
Toddler “Rainbow Spaghetti Store”
Baby Sensory Spaghetti Snack
Finger Painting with Spaghetti
While the noodles were boiling I sat Tallulah down with a hard spaghetti noodle stuck into a wad of Play Doh and a bowl of round cereal. I mentioned this activity when I gave away a jar of Happy Baby Puffs. This kept her from nipping at my heels asking if the noodles were done yet.
After the noodles were boiled and cooled I separated them into several bowls and added olive oil and food coloring. I also sat aside a mound of plain noodles for the babies.
As luck would have it my sister and the girl’s she nannies for stopped by for an afternoon play date just in time. I gave each of the toddlers tools like tongs, serving spoons, plastic knives and plates.
All that was left to do was stand back and watch them play. It is funny how different children are. The playmate was cutting her noodles into small little pieces while Tallulah was more interested in picking up globs.
I’m not sure who started the trend, but at some point we all started singing Christmas carols and began decorating the trees and bushes in the backyard with the colored noodles. My daughter is big on decorating trees for some imaginary tree festival so the noodle garlands were a big hit.
As the girls hung pasta in the trees the babies sat on the porch strapped into their highchairs happy as they could be. They munched, they played, they flung and most importantly they had fun. I was glad to be able to include Baxter. Bax’s little friend was a bit older and enjoyed running a serving utensil through her pile of pasta. Let me just say these babies sat there for probably close to 45 minutes happy as little clams.
After the novelty of tree decorating and baby pasta munching wore off it was time to switch things up. I put all the left over pasta that did not have food coloring on it into separate bowls. I gave the toddlers each a sheet of paper and squirted finger paints into each of the piles of pasta. The girls swirled the paint and pasta around to make different patterns and designs. The end result was actually really cool.
There must be some happy birds and vermin in my neighborhood. A few weeks ago we had a sensory bin with bird seed and now a pasta party in the backyard. I left a pile of colorful noodles in hopes of squeezing one more craft project out of that bag. If they harden up just right we are going to make noodle monster sun catchers. I have my googly eyes and Tacky Glue in the ready position. Keep your fingers crossed!