A was for art-make your own colored sand. Maybe it should have been a is for Are you ready to make a huge mess? Poor Heather! I feel that must be what she is thinking right now!
I feel bad because Heather's boys did the colored sand craft and they colored themselves. I think when Demi adds water to her sensory box of colored sand she might turn herself rainbow colors. I spent a little time thinking about this and how to solve this problem after the children went to bed tonight. I started thinking how children's paints will run when they get wet. I know this because I use that method to make my children paint dots to paint pictures. I started thinking that maybe my craft acrylic paints would work. I got out a small yogurt cup of sand and added a small squirt of paint and mixed with a plastic spoon (one I use for crafts). I ended up with wet purple paint. It felt sticky wet and did get on my fingers. I let it dry and it ended up clumpy (you can see a lot of clumps in the picture). The clumps broke up very easy in my hand and when I put some purple painted sand in water the color did not run, come off, or make any type of mess on my hands. I did have some mess in the cup I mixed it in and I had to set it out to dry the paint but if I did this outside in the sun on a warm day I wouldn't have any worries with large messes. Using acrylic craft paints gives a lot more choices of colors but I wouldn't do this if I had children who like to eat sand. My two older children don't eat sand (anymore) and my baby isn't old enough to get into our sensory table. Using food color I think would work wonderful if you have dry sand, dry hands, and want to do sand art in jars, bottles or sprinkle on spots of glue on a paper. I think it would work well if you layer sand in a small glass jar and add a small candle in the center (for gift giving). Using paint I think will work well if you like to use wet sand to play in and have children that don't eat sand. If you try this please share with me how it works for you! I would love to know how it works for others! When I do this with my 2 year old I will have her put the sand in an old plastic bottle and I will add the squirt of paint. I will help her put the lid on and let her shake it up to mix the color. I will pour it out of the bottle and put on a tray to dry. I will make sure the tray is out of her reach because the painted sand could make a large mess if a 2 year old plays in it when it is wet! Heather, I feel so bad knowing I got your children all messy with food dye! I should warn everyone I hardly ever look up directions on how to do crafts. Most of the time I try out things to see what happens. I don't spend much time thinking about what I need or what might go wrong. I do have lots of crafts that flop or make large messes! Did you all notice the large mess on my table with the dyed rice and flour glue? I am still finding some rice on my floor and I have cleaned it up several times already! I don't rent and we live in a very old farm house so it is OK when messes happen in our house. I save all of Travis's old worn out/stained play shirts for painting/crafting tops for Demi so she doesn't ruin all of her clothes with all the crafting we do. My house has no carpet so crafts are easy to clean up. I hope I didn't cause a ton of parents and children to cover themselves in food colors!