Toddler Activity: Flyswatter Painting

We love process art! With spring here, as well as the bugs, we had to find a creative way to make a unique piece of art. This time, with a flyswatter and a hyper toddler!

Mila has a love hate with bugs. On one hand, she’s afraid of most of them. Then, on the other, she likes butterflies and the ‘pretty’ bugs. She despises flies and gnats, but was pretty impressed last year when she was introduced to the flyswatter. It’s like she’s on fly patrol whenever she sees one.

To get her creative and being active (which she loves), I thought this activity would be fun for her!

Not only is it fun for Mila to paint and have fun with it, the texture the flyswatter made was amazing to me. It turned out to be a great project.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Canvas or paper
  • Flyswatter
  • ‘Bugs’ (aka paint)

I love activities that have an easy set up. It works for Mila’s patience level and if I just need a quick activity, it’s so nice. This one was just like that.

The only real planning we did was picking out paint colors. Mila, of course, went for her normal colors: pink, blue, and purple. We had everything else already on hand, but you can find all of these materials almost anywhere.

Then, I just poured little dots of paint all over the canvas. I told Mila to pretend they were bugs and to smack them!

She had so much fun hitting all the different bugs. If I do this activity again, I’ll have her hit the certain colors to practice color matching. It would be fun seeing if she or any toddler would try their best not to hit any other colors too.

The patter the lines on the flyswatter made were perfect. When she asked for more bugs, the layered look was so cute. Somehow, the paints didn’t all muddle together and you could see all the different colors. I was worried they’d just become a huge purple blob!

I think this pattern would end up making great homemade wrapping paper too!

Mila had a ton of fun hitting the canvas and we ended up doing the same activity on a big wood board too.

I hope to finish her painting off with writing a quote on it in the near future. I love to combine her artwork with encouraging words! It just makes for a fun team project that I know we’ll enjoy for years to come.

Let me know in the comments if you like bugs or if you’re on Mila’s side of the flyswatter.

Check out how some other moms incorporated bugs and insects in their learning.

Motherhood freed me.

Last month, I saw a post by Avery’s Garden asking for submissions of creative grief. The prompt was, “What does motherhood look like to you?”

For me, motherhood has been complicated and full of ups and downs.

In the beginning, I was stripped away from physically mothering Jensen. I will never be able to fully explain that pain and how it will always linger. I’ve tried hundreds of time, but there are no words.

As the months and years have went past, my motherhood has evolved.

I have Mila and we remember Jensen each day. With the two of them, I parent and honor them so different. I’ve changed the way I look at my motherhood too.

Here’s how I see my motherhood this year…

Through the grief and nakedness
of losing the biggest part of me,
planted a seed.

Out of that pain and emptiness
came all the growth and beauty.
Motherhood freed me.

I’m definitely not an artist, but I enjoyed painting and creating. When I look at this piece, I think of how far I’ve come and how much love I give every day.

Motherhood isn’t a pretty thing. It’s hard and is never perfect. Somehow through it all, it’s freed me.

I couldn’t imagine a life without them. Everyday I’m glad they chose me to be their mom.

Toddler Activity: St. Patrick’s Day ‘Clover’ Painting

Ever wonder how you can combine listening and creativity? This St. Patrick’s Day activity does it.

My house is already rapidly getting ready for spring. Our plants are growing, we’ve been playing outside, and spring cleaning is in full effect. Just over the weekend, our house has rainbows, spring, and St. Patrick’s Day decor up and hanging.

To get Mila ready for next week’s fun holiday, we read Pete the Cat: The Great Leprechaun Chase.

I thought we could do a painting with it too. When I pre read it, I tried to find repetitive words she wasn’t super familiar with before. Clover is the leprechauns name in the story and is used quite often. So, that’s what I decided on.

To make a regular painting a little more fun, I continued using an unusual painting tool.

The supplies you’ll need:

Yes, you read that right. We’re using a bell pepper to paint!

I guess I just really wanted to play with my food as a child since I’m constantly letting Mila play with hers.

Bell peppers make a clover shape when they’re painted and stamped.

She actually wasn’t super fond on just gripping the pepper though. You can stick a fork in the pepper to do the same effect. It looked like she had more control that way too.

All we did for this activity was read the book and stamp the pepper every time Clover was said.

It turns out, Clover was said way more than I remembered when I first read the story. Mila was constantly going back and forth with from paint to canvas.

There were a few times she didn’t do it because she was so interested in the book. Cute right?

Don’t worry. We read it again afterwards.

Honestly, this was such a cute activity.

It proved that my toddler can actually listen (I’m such a jokester) and she’s so creative.

I think my favorite part of the painting is where you can tell Clover was said three times in a page. She just stamped it quickly in the same spot.

We hope you love this activity as much as we did!

It’s a quick one to do with your toddler or older child. You’ll get a new St. Patrick’s Day decor price and the knowledge that kids can listen when they want.

Let me know in the comments if you try it out.

Make sure to check out these great St. Patrick’s Day activities too!

Also, I’m looking to expand Mila’s Easter/Spring books. Do you have an Easter/Spring childrens book recommendation?

Toddler Activity: Rainbow Bubble Wrap Painting

In our house, rainbows hold a special meaning.

Mila is my rainbow baby and any time we can incorporate them in our home, we do. So, it felt pretty fitting to make our big canvas painting a rainbow this month.

We’ve done smaller rainbow crafts, but this big painting may be my new favorite.

All the supplies you’ll need are:

  • Paint (the colors of the rainbow)
  • Bubble wrap
  • Canvas

Since Mila was busy with the nice weather, I was able to prep this easily. When she did notice we were painting, she ran over.

We talked about all the different colors. She’s finally able to say ‘orange’ and let me know that her favorite color of all of them was purple.

All I did was put paint in rainbow arches in the correct order.

Then, I helped Mila put the bubble wrap over top of it. When it was there, she pushed on all the paint to spread it out.

It was fun watching her figure out how it all worked. She thought it was pretty cool to see how the paint mixed together and everything. The best part was pulling off the bubble wrap.

We all know my love for using random things to paint, this turned out so different than I expected. It’s textured, but not in bubble wrap’s usual way.

Mila was so proud of her latest artwork. It’s hanging up now, even though I may add a quote above the red arch.

No matter what, this artwork is easy to do with kids of all ages. It can be modified for babies by putting a more secure wrap on the canvas. For older kids, they can pour the paint on too.

I hope that you and your toddler love this activity! If you end up doing it, let me know in the comments.