Whether for kids, adults or just for yourself, rainy day
entertaining doesn’t have to be a hassle. All you need is a little
preparation in advance to spare you from the headaches of last
minute scrambling. Having a few items ahead of time will save you
hours of grief and lead to fun food-related activities.
Make a Tickle “Tub”
You may have a tickle trunk similar to that of Mr. Dressup’s
filled with old costume clothing for the kids to enjoy. This tickle
trunk, however is more like a tickle “tub”. The tickle tub holds
the ingredients necessary to make basic cookies, cupcakes and more.
Included in this tub should be: sugar, lots of flour, baking
soda/powder, chocolate chips, raisins, colorful sprinkles, food
coloring, a cake mix, fun cookie cutter shapes and other
ingredients that are to your taste. When all else fails, creating
colorful cookies on a rainy day can bring smiles to the grouchiest
of faces. It’s a great opportunity to introduce your kids to the
kitchen. For really wee ones, simply sprinkling on the final
decorations will seem like a thrill. As well, those single
ingredients can be used on their own; spread half an apple with
peanut butter and let your little kids create their own lady bug
spots with raisins.
Get Crafty with Foodstuffs
To start, you can create playdough! Include
cream of tarter in your tickle tub, add a little oil and you have
all the ingredients. There are many recipes available for this
malleable substance on the internet, but the basic one includes
flour, water, oil, salt, cream of tartar and food coloring. Kids
will get hours of fun out of creating creatures for you to admire.
Plus, it’s biodegradable!
For older kids with a bit more patience, consider showing them
the fun art of papier machÃ©. Pull out those piles
of newspaper you were planning on recycling, cut them into long
strips and make a paste out of flour and water. Craft proof an area
in your kitchen with a plastic sheet. It’s easiest to start using
balloons for this craft. Blow up and tie a balloon. Next, dip each
paper strip into the paste mixture then carefully run your fingers
down it to pull off excess gloop. Wrap it around the balloon and
smooth it out. Keep layering the balloon evenly with strips of
paper and let dry. The balloon will eventually shrink as the paper
hardens. Your kids can then paint their very own creatures.
Collect a few old paper towel tubes so the kids can create their
own rainmakers. Take two sheet of aluminum foil the same length of
the tube and crunch them into two long noodles. Twist them together
lightly and place inside the tube. Seal the first end with
construction paper. Add a tablespoon of rice or lentils and seal
the other end. Kids can decorate their new instruments to their
Open the fridge and… For older kids, it’s worth opening up the
fridge, pulling out a few unusual ingredients and get into creative
cooking. Challenge them to find three or four different recipes
that include those ingredients from the Internet or from your own
cookbook collection. Or, take a cue from Just Like Mom and let them
get experimental. Sure, using the expensive cheese isn’t the best
idea, but if that broccoli needs to be eaten a.s.a.p., it may be
worth the risk. In the end, it’s an opportunity to inspire
creativity in your kids and get them cooking.
Have a Rainy Day Party!
If you suspect in advance that a rainy day is coming, why not
turn it into a theme party? Create rainy day food such as mud
puddle pudding or worms in the earth (chocolate pudding, green
Jello and jelly worms). Check out the recipe for umbrella penne.
Add blue food coloring to your drinks or ice cubes for some extra
“blue sky”. Turn the party into an indoor picnic. Use the cookie
cutters from your tickle tub to make funny shaped sandwiches. Put a
few drops of food coloring on a paper plate, let the kids hold it
out in the rain for a few seconds and presto – their own watercolor
works of art! Let them dry and the kids can use them as
personalized plates. Don’t forget the paper cocktail umbrellas!
Grab Some Paper and Pens
There are an amazing amount of things you can do with these two
simple tools. Create a game of fun “food” charades. Make a fun food
quiz. Do a blindfold “taste” or “smell” test and see how well your
kids know their food or spices by getting them to write down a
guess for each one. For adult parties, you can go one step further.
Create an impromptu wine or beer tasting party. Come up with a
series of food related questions to see how well couples know their
partners: i.e. What was the name of the restaurant where you had
your first date? What was the meal? Etc.
There are so many activities and games to enjoy during a rainy
day. All you need is a little imagination, a few select supplies
and willing participants to make your day an enjoyable one. Take
the opportunity to get creative the next time the weather keeps you
indoors. You won’t be disappointed.