Simple and Fun Salt Dough Easter Activity for Kids
It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Seriously you guys things have been so crazy here in this little patch of mud in Arkansas. While we were lucky enough to not deal with the flu we were hit with the Adenovirus, and it hit us HARD.
The littlest nerdlet has struggled with asthma all of his life. Since moving to Arkansas this has become even more of an issue. Seasonal allergies, so much snot, and then the breathing problems. When it began I thought “welcome to allergy season”. We went to the doctor, got the standard medicine, and were on our way. By about noon the next day, I get a call from the school nurse to pick him up as he had been in the office twice already for his rescue inhaler. So off with me, he went.
Later that night we found ourselves in the ER and he was admitted for round the clock breathing treatments. We have been through asthma a lot in recent years but nothing like this. I have to say that it scared the crap out of me!
So here I was with two kids in two different hospitals. (For those who aren’t returning readers my oldest has been in a psychiatric treatment facility since December for long-term treatment) Needless to say, my motivation went kaput. Even though I had done everything I was supposed to I was feeling like the worst mother ever. Certainly not one who should be giving parenting advice to anyone or worrying about cake and crafts.
Things have calmed down a lot, though. They are about as close to normal as they can get for the time being, and about to get better because my daughter will be coming home in the next month or so. She gets to come home for the weekend on a kind of “test run” because she has been doing so well in therapy. Of course, we had to have some fun this weekend on her first day trip home.
An Easy Easter Craft
Ok, Easter is a few months away but that’s not going to stop us from doing a few fun Easter crafts while we wait! We love salt dough crafts. The recipe for salt dough is so easy to put together in minutes and the possibilities when it comes to kids crafts with salt dough are endless. We have made salt dough magnets, salt dough picture frames, and of course salt dough Christmas ornaments. ( pro tip: it makes a great handmade gift from the kids for holidays, birthdays, or any day!)
I love spring colors and couldn’t be more excited to paint more things. ( maybe, even more, salt dough crafts?) There is just something cheerful and whimsical about bright blues and pinks. In fact, they are some of my favorite colors to use on my dinosaur planters when I make them. For this project, we added a few different pinks, blues, and even yellow to create colorful ( and sparkly!) Easter eggs.
Simple Salt Dough Recipe
The recipe for salt dough couldn’t be easier. There are a few things to keep in mind though.
First, and most importantly since this is a children’s activity, this is NOT an edible dough. The salt content in salt dough is way too high and could be very dangerous for little ones if eaten.
There is a chance that the salt can be a skin irritant. If you notice an issue you can use disposable gloves when working with it. In most cases, though, simply washing your hands well after making your shapes should suffice.
Along the same lines, be sure to keep it out of eyes as it can cause irritation.
Salt Dough Easter Eggs
First, of course, you need to make the salt dough. Using a stand mixer (or a handheld if you don’t have a stand mixer) add the paddle attachment. Pour in your salt and flour. Give this a quick spin to begin incorporating the two together. As much as I love my Pink Himalayan salt I would suggest sticking to regular old table salt for this one.
Roll your salt dough out onto a floured surface until it is around 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. An even thickness throughout will help later when drying them in the oven.
Using your egg shaped cookie cutter make as many eggs as your salt dough will allow. We got about 16 out of half of the dough and decided to save the other half for later. ( You can always cut the recipe in half for a smaller batch if you prefer )
Once you have transferred your eggs to a nonstick baking sheet you can take a straw, pencil, or another rounded object to poke a hole in each of your eggs so that you can hang them later. If you prefer to make magnets you can skip this step. Personally, I find a straw to work the best because it picks up the area being cut out as you are making your hole.
Preheat your oven to 250 degrees F and place the cut out eggs on the middle rack. Keep an eye on them from time to time but it usually takes about 1-2 hours to dry them out completely so they will harden. If they are still a little soft after 2 hours you can let them air dry overnight.
If you prefer a smoother surface you can apply a clear coat to the dough before painting. For our project, we went straight to the paint. Using your colors and imagination add patterns and designs to each egg.
It may take a few coats of paint for your salt dough eggs to reach the texture or color you want. Salt dough can be a little porous. Give each coat around 30-45 minutes to dry before adding the next.
Once you are finished painting you can add any embellishments you would like. This may be glitter or stickers. I let the kids do their own thing usually to come up with something special to them.
For ours, we finished up the painting with a sealing coat of glitter paint. I love glitter paint and think it adds a fun touch while doubling as a “clear coat” to seal in the rest of your work. We got ours at Michaels but it should be available in any craft store.
Let the eggs completely dry an hour or two, or overnight if you prefer. Once finished, tie your preferred ribbon or string to the eggs to form a loop. We used a braided twine ribbon for ours but anything from a pretty ribbon to strips of fabric would work for these. We found that using a lollipop stick (a small one, like Dum Dum size) works well to help get the ribbon through the hole without causing any damage to the egg.
Once you have your loop you can put them on a tree, hang them around the house, or add them to a ribbon for a garland like we decided to do. If you prefer to not hang them and didn’t add the holes you can use craft glue to attach a small magnet to the back of each.
Share Your Favorite Easter Activities
If you decide to give this project a try leave us a comment and let us know how it turned out! We love to see any adjustments or changes you guys make to make things your own.
Are you doing any other Easter projects this year? We would love to see those too! Be sure to leave us a comment to share your projects or join us as a contributor on our Nerdy Moms Pinterest group board and add them there!
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