Thursday, August 04, 2005

using laziness to advantage

When I find cool craft stuff that my kids would like and that's not too expensive, I buy it.

And then, because I'm inherently lazy, I squirrel it away, in a secret bin too high for my kids to reach, for "rainy days" that almost never actually arrive, because the crafts would require too much clean-up.

Well, yesterday was a "rainy day". We had some young friends over because their oldest brother had broken his arm at a camp five hours away and needed surgery... so while Mom and Dad went down to retrieve (and comfort) him, their other kids played over here for the afternoon and evening.

Since a new computer game of Freddi Fish can only hold seven kids' attention for so long, I realized we needed a craft. I reached into my secret bin and pulled out... Sculpey eraser clay.

It's every bit as fun as I hoped it would be. It works just like regular Sculpey or Fimo. It's a bit tough when you first take it out of the package, but (like regular Sculpey) when you knead it and warm it it's pretty much like playdough.

We made dinosaur eggs. Planets. Aliens. Cubes. And an ice-cream cone. And then we cleaned up the clay crumbs by making balls of clay and rolling them in the crumbs to create even more dinosaur eggs. We poked holes in the ends of most of the erasers, to fit on the end of a pencil.

In a fit of generosity I gave all my creations away before I photographed them, to our visiting friends and their brother coming home from surgery. But we still have these ones were made by BigE (above) and Chickie (below.)

And to our delight (and my surprise), after they were baked and cooled: they erase! Like real erasers! And, at least so far, they don't leave little crumbs of eraser clay behind.

In my secret bin (don't tell my kids!) I still have wood picture frames for painting, a deck of I Spy cards, some Catch-A-Bubble soap bubbles that harden after blowing, a tiny twirl-a-paint, a few jigsaw puzzles and some neon play-doh... but nothing as cool as Sculpey Eraser Clay. I'll have to keep my eyes open for some more rainy day emergency crafts.

Five stars for Sculpey Eraser clay. Chickie's already asking when we can make some more erasers.

And three stars for laziness, which -- while it has its problems -- also comes in handy when you need an emergency craft project.


Anonymous kim said...

that's neat. You deserve more stars than 3. This is definitely better than my rainy day yell at everyone plan. :-(

8/04/2005 9:29 PM  
Blogger Karin said...

Sculpey clay is great...I love messing with it! We've done a couple of different kinds and always find it fun. It's usually Minnie, Fred & I playing around the table at this point way to spend an evening~

8/05/2005 5:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, Kel! this is Ilia, but I forgot my password and username. :-S

I really like your Eraser idea!!! that is cool!!did you make them with clay? I just saw the picture. do you use them to erase pencil, or pen? just wanted to know!

8/05/2005 11:21 AM  
Anonymous gayle said...

I'm with kim, taking on 3 extra kids, coming up with a craft and having those kids come home saying what a great time they had deserves waaaaaay more than 3 stars. I think you are a perfect 10. By the way, this mother of those 3 extra kids and the one with the broken arm had a blast with the clay the next day, too. My kids couldn't wait to get it out and my darling daughter loved to show me how you show her how to clean it up and make dinosaur eggs. Way to go, Kel. Thanks again for watching (and playing with) my kids.

8/07/2005 9:22 AM  
Blogger Iris said...

Thanks for the review of the eraser clay. I've been wondering about that stuff. I'll have to add it to my own rainy day stash. I just peeked in there the other day and saw a package of regular neon Sculpey clay that I got on sale somewhere, squirreled away, and forgot about. Now I just need a rainy day...but I'm sure to forget about it by then.

8/07/2005 5:57 PM  
Blogger kelly said...

kim: unfortunately I do a lot of yelling at everyone too. But I do a lot better when we have company present... Maybe I just ought to have company more often!

ilia: they just erase pencil, like normal erasers. It's a special kind of clay that bakes into erasers. You can get it at JoAnn's Fabrics and Michaels Crafts.

gayle: we truly did have a blast too. Having company keeps me from trying to get other "important" things done and concentrate on playing... which in many ways is a LOT more important than all the silly things I try to squeeze into a normal day! but the only reason I even HAD sculpey clay was because I was too lazy to get it out on a normal day, which is why I only get three stars. still, it's flattering to be called a 10, I think that's a first for me! :-)

8/15/2005 12:03 AM  

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