Marble~Sparkly Play Doughย 

We love making Play Dough in our house! 

We made this batch on a rainy day and it was only by accident that it turned out to have a marble-effect. 

I used the usual recipe of: 

2 cups of plain flour

1 cup of salt

2 cups of water 

1 tsp cream of tartar

1 tbsp of cooking oil 

Food colouring (for this we used blue) 
When adding the food colouring a first time the desired colour wasn’t achieved so after mixing it in we added another few squeezes of colouring and this made the marble-effect. We also added some silver and blue glitter for an added effect and also mixed in some vanilla essence to provide a scent. 
Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Activities we’ve doneย 


‘Cloud Doughโ€™
Iโ€™ve been wanting to try this out with Lou for a while now, I used to make it for the children I worked with in the nursery. We used baby oil and plain flour to make a very soft consistency, you can use food colouring but we left it plain. We did this outside with a tray as it does create quite a lot of mess! Lou loved the way she could create shape moulds with the dough she said โ€œitโ€™s like my motion sand!โ€ 

Sensory Play Dough

I made play dough using our normal recipe of:
2 cups plain flour
2 cups salt
2 cups water 
2 table spoons of oil
2 tea spoons of Cream of Tartar
In the past Iโ€™ve then added to the microwave but Iโ€™ve found that adding boiling water works just as well.
I coloured the dough pink with food colouring and added Cinnamon. Lou liked smelling the dough and creating her own cupcakes.


Glittery Foam

Lou requested to have foam outside so I used shaving foam and to add an extra touch, glitter. She absolutely loved getting it on her hands! 

Spaghetti, pasta and rice play.

I am hoping to buy a โ€˜Tuff Spotโ€™ or โ€˜Builderโ€™s trayโ€™ for sensory/messy play purposes. But for now I used an old under the bed storage box to put some rice, pasta and spaghetti in, both girls immediately wanted to get inside to sit amongst the materials! They used tea set items to transfer the rice, etc. Moo wanted to eat the pasta! 
Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Sensory/Craft Ideas Link up #1

file1-1

Here is my first Link-up ๐Ÿ™‚

Let’s Share ~ Sensory/Craft Ideas. 
We love Sensory/Messy Play in our household, I’ve created a Link-up where other bloggers can share their photos of Sensory/Messy play and/or Craft ideas, along with a description and any list of resources/ingredients/equipment used.

I have learnt that to share ideas is a fab thing. Iโ€™d also love to hear posts about any classes or groups that you have attended with your children, such as messy play groups, etc.

If you are not a blogger, Iโ€™d still love to hear from you as you can always send me an email at:

sensorysensitivemummy@outlook.com

 

Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

Please find the Link – Up below:

And if possible please copy and paste the Link-Up button code and add it to your post ๐Ÿ™‚ 

For any link up posts shared on social media please use the hashtag: 
#sensoryandcraftshare 

Let’s share ~ Sensory/Craft Ideas


Last summer I included a lot of Sensory/Messy Play and Craft ideas, via sharing photos of what we have done on my blog and Facebook Blog page. This was after planning a ‘Sensory Diet’ for Lou as she is a huge ‘Sensory Seeker,’ and she thrives on these type of activities.

I have recently had to reduce my work load due to ongoing back problems, whilst I await treatment, which I have been upset about as working in Early Years settings is all I’ve ever known. What I realised recently is that I can use my knowledge of early years activities to share ideas, especially as sensory play and craft are huge areas of my interests, and I do a lot of these types of activities at home with both Lou and Moo.

I also hope to share a range of new reward charts that I’m currently putting together, I’m having to change Lou’s ‘Frozen’ chart to her new interest of ‘Trolls.’

We cannot wait to get started on more sensory/messy activities as the weather starts to improve, we spent so many hours in the garden last spring and summer, and I have ordered Lou a ‘Tuff Spot,’ or ‘Builder’s tray’ to explore many of her favourite and new materials.


And of course it had to be pink!

What I hope to do now is to create a ‘Linky’ where other bloggers can link up their photos of Sensory/Messy play and/or Craft ideas, along with a description and any list of resources/ingredients/equipment used.

I have learnt that to share ideas is a fab thing. I’d also love to hear posts about any classes or groups that you have attended with your children, such as messy play groups, etc.

If you are not a blogger, I’d still love to hear from you as you can always send me an email at:

sensorysensitivemummy@outlook.com

The follow image is going to be the Linky icon for when the posts are linked up:


Whilst I get to grips with how this works, as it’s all new to me! I’ll be sharing some activity ideas via my Facebook page:

Sensory Sensitive Mummyย 

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚
get the InLinkz code “>

ย 

ย 

ย 

ย 


ย 

ย 

ย 

ย 

Sensory Sensitive Mummy



Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML

How we celebrate Halloweenย 

Sometimes I think I set my ambitions too high, last year Lou only celebrated Halloween at her Early Years setting – which she did handle really well. Lou had nightmares about monsters that started as soon as the adverts for Halloween came on the TV.

This year Lou seemed a bit more interested in Halloween in general and I thought it would be a good idea to plan a Halloween party. Around 3 days prior to this party I noticed a change in Lou’s behaviour, she was becoming more aggressive towards myself and her younger sister and she was aggressive in the tone of how she spoke to me and other family members. I sat down with her quietly and asked her what she was worried about to which she replied: 

“Mummy I’m scared of Halloween.”

 

I’d been so worried about Lou feeling included and joining in with seasonal events that it overshadowed the fact that she was becoming very frustrated about the thought of a party – the costumes, the masks, the noises – that could have an effect. This was a big learning curve for me to always ensure that the needs of Lou come first, I may be trying to help her but in fact I could be hindering her by doing something that is just too much for her to cope with.

Lou has always been the same on ‘home turf’ she gets territorial and possessive over her toys and belongings and then can get overwhelmed and hit out. 

We did continue with a few little ‘friendly’ seasonal activities which Lou did cope really well with.

1. Pumpkin carving and exploration

Mikey lit up

Lou asked for ‘Friendly’ Pumpkins so I looked on Pinterest and found some patterns for Mikey from Monsters Inc and Harry Potter.

2. Chocolate covered apples.

Lou did this activity with her 3-year-old cousin, it was very popular! I stuck a lolly stick into the core of the apple and the girls rolled it around in the melted chocolate and then dipped in ‘Hundreds and Thousands,’ and then left to dry.

3. Cupcakes.

I used orange and black food colouring for these Muffin-style cupcakes but I soon learnt that black actually came out grey! No matter how much colouring I put in!

I did put a few decorations up, including this Web material with matching spiders, which Lou enjoyed touching to check if it was real! 
For every seasonal activity from now on I’ll have to take it in my stride and think always, ‘What is manageable for Lou?’ 

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Week 6 of our holidays ~ the final week!ย 

We made it!!! I can’t believe the end of the summer holidays is here! We have managed a lot of sensory and craft activities and it’s kept Lou going, along with some play dates, trips out, parties and weekly sessions at the SMILE therapy centre in Malvern. As with any plans, we didn’t achieve everything and had to alter things here and there depending on the weather and availability of materials. But I’m proud of what we’ve achieved. 

This week: 

1. Family time.

On bank holiday Monday we had a family barbecue and Lou received a watch ready for starting school. Lou has been fascinated with time for a while now and she’s picking it up really well. It helps her to understand things like “when the hand gets to the 6 it’s time to…” 

The girls also received a play kitchen as a gift. Playing ‘shops’ has been a favourite for a while now, this kept them occupied for hours! 

2. Last play therapy session of these holidays.

On Tuesday Lou had her weekly session at the SMILE Centre in Malvern. We were lucky that it was a beautiful day and we were able to visit the park opposite the centre. The girls were so happy to see that there were baby ducklings! We absolutely love Malvern, it’s one of my all time favourite places, I hope to take the girls up the Malvern Hills when they are a bit older. 

This week’s SMILE session was for Lou to make her own scones. I was amazed that the recipe that the staff had found used lemonade and double cream with self-raising flour to create the scones, which I’d never heard of before! Lou was able to feel the textures of all the ingredients and absolutely loved mixing it all together with her hands, the mixture foamed up once the lemonade was added! Lou got the chance to try Lemonade for the first time but she wasn’t keen as she said: “the bubbles are getting in my face!” 

The scones were baked and we got to taste them and took loads home! It’s amazing how we couldn’t tell the difference with using these ingredients to the usual way we’ve made scones with butter! 

They were delicious served with butter and jam! 

Here’s the recipe for these type of scones: 

3 ingredient scones
3. Flour paint.

We decided to experiment with textured paint by adding flour to the paint. This was popular with Lou who immediately wanted to explore the texture on her hands! She enjoyed creating handprints. 

We also used bottles to create flower prints. 

I’ve defintely found that it’s been beneficial to plan activity ideas for school holidays and I’ll do the same for October half term. 

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Week 5 of our holidaysย 

Wow what a busy week! We were hardly at home this week which meant that we hardly touched on any planned activities for craft and sensory play, but we were so lucky with the weather that time was spent at parks, friends’ houses and trips out.

1. Cous Cous sensory play.

I am always looking for more materials for sensory play, we’ve never tried Cous Cous before but Lou loved exploring this, “it’s like sand mummy” She observed. And then also explored what happened when adding a bit of water: “Now it’s slimy!”

2. Good old cut and stick.

Lou has always taken a great interest in catalogues! I remember when I was younger, myself and my younger sister would cut up old catalogues and stick the items we like onto paper, Lou really enjoyed this and has been waiting to get her hands on the scissors for a while now!

3. Our day out at ‘All Things Wild,’ Honeybourne, Worcestershire.

We love this place! We’ve visited ‘All Things Wild’ a few times since Lou was 2, there’s a bit of everything. We found that there are some new additions to the park such as a large climbing frame with a twisty slide that Lou just loved. Moo really enjoyed watching the Guinea Pigs, Prairie Dogs and rabbits, they were on her level and had domes to put your head in right up close to the animals. Another favourite were the Meerkats and Porcupines. We travelled on the Dinosaur train this time and enjoyed walking around the Dinosaur structures even though it was raining! There were new Digger pits and a sandpit where the children had to uncover Dinosaur bones.

We were lucky with the weather in the afternoon but Lou and Moo enjoyed the many indoor activities on offer, which is great if the weather is bad. Such as soft play, play tractors, and reptile house. There is also a great indoor sand pit room but we didn’t manage get in there this time as we were so busy!

We hope to visit again in October half term.

I cannot believe that were in our last week of the holidays! There’s going to be a bit of preparation this week for Lou starting school, but hopefully also time for more fun!

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚


 

Week 4 of our holidays

We haven’t got a lot of craft done this week, we’ve been busy with appointments, parties, play dates and park visits! It was lovely this week to catch up with people we haven’t seen since the schools broke up, Lou was desperate to spend time some time with her friends, she’s done so incredibly well over the last 4 weeks, out of routine and the structure that an education setting provides, but I felt a bit of “I’m bored with you now mummy” this week! I can’t believe we’ve already done 4 weeks, I think the last 2 weeks will surely fly by! 

Activities this week:

1. ‘Cloud Dough’

I’ve been wanting to try this out with Lou for a while now, I used to make it for the children I worked with in the nursery. We used baby oil and plain flour to make a very soft consistency,  you can use food colouring but we left it plain. We did this outside with a tray as it does create quite a lot of mess! Lou loved the way she could create shape moulds with the dough she said “it’s like my motion sand!” 
2. Sensory play dough

I made play dough using our normal recipe of:

2 cups plain flour

2 cups salt

2 cups water 

2 table spoons of oil

2 tea spoons of Cream of Tartar

In the past I’ve then added to the microwave but I’ve found that adding boiling water works just as well.

I coloured the dough pink with food colouring and added Cinnamon. Lou liked smelling the dough and creating her own cupcakes.

3. Glittery Foam

Lou requested to have foam outside so I used shaving foam and to add an extra touch, glitter. She absolutely loved getting it on her hands! 

4. Spaghetti, pasta and rice play.

I am hoping to buy a ‘Tuff Spot’ or ‘Builder’s tray’ for sensory/messy play purposes. But for now I used an old under the bed storage box to put some rice, pasta and spaghetti in, both girls immediately wanted to get inside to sit amongst the materials! They used tea set items to transfer the rice, etc. Moo wanted to eat the pasta! 

5. Nature shot of the week

There was excitement on Thursday evening when a hot air balloon went straight over our house and landed only a few fields away! 

6. Baking ~ Cupcakes 

We made some cupcakes for Lou’s friends’ joint 3rd and 4th party. It’s strange how Lou just wants the icing off the cake – yet I gave her a bit of icing and sprinkles in a bowl and she said “I don’t want this mummy!” 

This week was a big one for me, some very positive steps forward in terms of my Blogging:

You can find the link to the article 

Here

  • I was asked by a local children’s centre to help run a group for parents that have children with additional needs, I will update more on this as I find out more.
  • I was approached by the charity Family Fund, who I write posts for, if they could use one of my photos in their marketing materials ๐Ÿ™‚ this was the first time that I’ve received recognition for my photography. I now hope to pursue this and get a better camera than just taking pictures on my smart phone!
This photo was a natural photo taken on the spur-of-the-moment whilst Lou was going through the tunnel at a local park.

We’re now looking forward to week 5 ๐Ÿ™‚ Where I’ll be labelling lots of school uniform and thinking about the complicated task of school shoes! 
Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Week 3 of our holiday – craft and Sensory Diet activities

This week we got quite a lot packed in, we were able to complete more craft and sensory activities and we got a couple of days out as well due to daddy being off work for 3 days. 

1. Salt dough hearts.

This was one of those activities that allowed Lou to explore and she enjoyed the texture and feel of the salt dough but I don’t think I cooked the dough for long enough in the oven and therefore we found that the PVA went stringy on contact with the heart shape! Lou found this highly amusing and enjoyed touching it! I will repeat this activity next time and learn from the experience! 

The salt dough recipe we used to make salt dough was:

1 cup of salt

1 cup if water 

2 cups of flour

And we added in some pink food colouring.

We made a mixture of PVA glue and water to create a varnish effect and placed on some buttons and sequins.

I also found that the buttons and sequins should have been pressed into the soft dough but as it then couldn’t be put into the oven it would take several days to properly dry out.

2. Salt dough hedgehogs.

This was more successful than the salt dough hearts! We collected some twigs on a walk and these were used to create the hedgehog’s spikes. We allowed the hedgehog to dry out naturally then hope to paint it. We used the salt dough recipe as above. 

3. ‘Puffy paint’ practice.

I wanted to give this a go before creating some puffy paint ice creams, as I’d never attempted this activity before.

We used PVA glue mixed with paint and shaving foam. The texture was amazing and the mixture did puff up! Lou was immediately fascinated by the texture and tried a bit out on paper with a paint brush, but she much preferred feeling the mixture on her hands! 

This soon turned into a colour mixing activity and Lou was delighted as she said: “I’ve made green” and “I’ve made purple!” She wanted to print the new colours into paper. I’m unsure if I used enough PVA glue in the mixture as I’m running out, as when the pictures created with a paint brush dried they dried flat rather than puffy, or whether this is what is supposed to happen!  

4. ‘Soapy foam’ in water tray. 

Moo was really into water play this week, she enjoyed getting the soapy foam (children’s bath product) onto her hands and squeezed it! We cannot use shaving foam with Moo as it irritates her skin as she gets Eczema. Soapy foam is kinder to children’s skin and is moldable, bought from a supermarket. 

5. Day out for Daddy’s birthday. 

We went on a 10-minute train journey to Worcester where we moved from when Lou was 2. We are lucky to live very close to a train station and as daddy was off work on holiday, we were able to visit the park, had lunch out and discovered the fountains by the riverside close to Worcester bridge.

Worcester bridge, taken from South Quay (River Severn)
I’ve always loved this view of the cathedral I used to walk this way to work, beautiful in the morning. Even if this photo I’ve taken is slightly wonky!
Water fountains on South Quay, Worcester

Lou was curious about the water fountains but wanted to stay on the edge to watch. When I said that she could go in further she replied: “But I’ll get my shoes wet mummy!” Such a contrast to the 2 year old I took here regularly – when she used to run through the water! 

Overall I was so impressed with Lou on this trip, her usual limit away from home is 2 hours but she lasted 4 hours on this day! We had some little ‘wobbles’ but these were quickly averted. This is the first proper family trip we’ve successfully managed in about a year! We decided to put the reins on Lou as it was a very busy place and she still tends to run off or bump into things. We try and gauge the safety aspects and whether she should wear them or not.

This has to be my favourite still life photo from the day: 

The sculpture, by Malvern artist Victoria Harrison, honours the lives of the officers and men who were killed in the adjoining battles of Qatia and Oghratina during the First World War.

I hadn’t seen this sculpture in Cripplegate park before, as I haven’t visited for 2 years, I found it great to capture as it’s made from mosaic tiles. I had to Google the meaning behind this 9ft sculpture (as I often ‘Google’ stuff!) It was unveiled in April 2016. 

Week 3 was a successful and busy one! I hope that week 4 brings much of the same! 

I just love it when the kitchen is a hive of craft activity ๐Ÿ™‚ 

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚ 

‘Mess Around’ session

At the end of July ‘Mess Around’ did a session at Lou’s new school, as she wasn’t able to attend I searched their website and was delighted to find that a session was being held on 6th August at a local village hall, only a few miles away from where we live. 

‘Mess Around’ provide messy play sessions from babies aged 6 months old, (sitting unaided) to children aged 5. These sessions are run all over the UK.

I was keen to book Lou onto the session as she thrives on messy, or sensory activities. I also wanted Moo to experience the session as she’s more on the move now and has already taken an interest in messy play, particularly sand and water play.

There was a great variety of experiences set out all over the hall including:

โ— Yellow gloop

โ— Coloured rice 

โ— Coloured spaghetti 

โ— Ribbons and streamers

โ— Paint with a variety of rollers and painting tools

โ— Purple play dough with cupcake moulds and stand

โ— Sand tray 

โ— Water tray including water beads 

โ— Coloured rice pudding 

โ— Balloons covered in shaving foam and tennis rackets/swatters 

โ— Coloured porridge oats – made into a Union Jack pattern 

This all made for a very inviting a colourful site on a ‘Carnival Sports Party’ them, which tied in nicely with the start of the 2016 Olympic games in Rio. The session included music of a up-beat, party style. 

The organisers had taken a lot of care and attention in laying out the materials on the sports party theme, and included medals and cups into the ‘Tuff Spot’ or builder’s tray. 

We hadn’t encountered ‘water beads’ before, both Lou and Moo were fascinated with their texture and Lou was surprised she could pick them up as she described them as “flat under the water.” 

We were fascinated with the yellow gloop mould that could be explored with cooking spoons and spatulas. 

The highlight of the session, especially for Lou, was the foam machine – at first she wasn’t sure but she got right in there and throughly enjoyed the feeling of the foam raining down! 

I would recommend Mess Around sessions to anyone, they are well organised and the staff are extremely helpful and friendly, they went around at various points with a bubble machine. There was an area that included wash bowls and towels to clean up at the end, it was also good to be reminded when booking the session to ensure the children wore old clothes so they could fully explore the materials on offer.

For more information please vist: 

Mess Around UK
To find a session.

Our session was run by Mess Around Worcestershire

Or visit their Facebook page.

Thanks for reading ๐Ÿ™‚