One of parents' greatest challenges is how to keep their young children from screaming incessantly (or trying to kill one another) while preparing a meal, at least that's true for me. I don't know what it is about dinnertime, but come 5:00 my kids typically decide it's the right time to utterly, and completely melt down. And somehow, I'm supposed to make dinner despite their madness. While making a stew the other night, both children were losing their minds. I knew if there was any hope of us eating that night, I needed to come up with something quick to keep them busy. Cue food painting.
About a year ago I saw the idea to paint with food on the Sprout channel. A woman used the base of a celery stalk to create flowers for a card. With extra celery on the counter, the idea came flooding back. In a matter of seconds I cut the celery, poured paint on a tray, and sat Addie down to paint. I also had extra broccoli, which I thought would enable her to experiment with different textures. She loved it! And most importantly, it kept her occupied until dinner was ready. Win!
Lincoln wanted to participate too, so when I had a breaking point in cooking I put him in his highchair to partake in the fun. Of course, he wanted to eat the vegetables and most of the paint ended up in his mouth, but at least he had a couple minutes of play before I decided it wasn't safe for him to ingest any more paint =).
I'll definitely keep this idea in the bank, knowing there is an endless array of foods the kids could use. Do you have any clever ideas that keep your kids busy while you cook?