No Mess Shake-It-Up Mother’s Day Art

I must admit, now I’m at the tail end of this pregnancy (35 weeks!) I’m finding it harder and harder to motivate myself to find fun new things to do with the Monkey. However, it’s Mother’s Day coming up at the end of this month (of which I am painfully aware, since it will be my first!) so I really should do something crafty for the Nanny’s. 

After racking my brain for a new technique we could try, I decided to stay simple and mess free. Noah LOVES shaking things at the moment; musical instruments, blocks, boxes – anything at all that he thinks may make a noise is getting vigorously shaken back and forth whilst he wears the cutest little grin. So let’s use what he’s good at!

In my teaching days, I’ve done many a jigsaw piece craft, and I love them paired with the line ‘I love you to pieces.’ So during a nap, I quickly sketched out two puzzle pieces (one for each of his Nannys!) onto card and cut them out.

Then, I gathered my materials. A selection of paint (I just used my normal bog-standard acrylics), some baking beans and a tupperware tub with a lid that clips on nice and firmly! 

Next, I blu-tacked the puzzle pieces to the inside of the tub. I squeezed a drop of each colour into the bottom, and then dropped in a layer of baking beans, enough to cover the paint. I secured on the lid, and we were ready to go!

Once he’d woken up and had a bottle, I handed the tub to Noah, and let him do his thing. With Bunny and Fox helping (of course!) he shook, rolled, and banged the tub across the floor. He loved the sound of the beans clattering around! I did wonder if an extension to this activity may be to add some cheap jingle bells (I have some loitering around) but actually on this occasion he was having enough fun with just the noise from the beans.

Look how happy he is! And note; no paint on my lovely carpet haha. I could see at this point that the colours were mixing to create a bit of a murky brown in parts, however he was having so much fun and this is process art, so I let him carry on until he was bored.

The only clear-up required was to gently pull out the card and set it aside to dry, whilst filling the tub with warm, soapy water to soak.

Once the paint had dried on the puzzle pieces, I simply stuck them onto the front of some more white card, folded and wrote my (I mean, Noah’s!) message. For extra involvement and future nostalgia, I may get him to pop a squidgy handprint on the inside before sending. Happy crafting!

TOP TIPS: Make sure the tub you use for this activity can be easily picked up with little hands! Or else you might find they get frustrated quickly 😊

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