It isn’t hard to make play dough. It uses very few ingredients and takes only about 10 minutes from start to finish and provides countless hours of fun for my kids. So why do I make such a big deal over it?
I asked myself these questions last week as I watched my boys try to stick together play dough that was half dried out and kept falling apart.
My list of excuses:
I’m so tired today.
I’ll make some later today.
l doubt I have the right ingredients.
They will want to help and I’ll have a big mess to clean up.
They are still enjoying the crumbly stuff.
I’m tired everyday.
I most likely wouldn’t get around to it later.
I probably do have ingredients and the least I could do is check.
So? There is going to be mess made today anyway If not in the kitchen, then in other areas of the house.
It would make them so happy to have new playdough that is easier for them to build things with.
As I had that inner dialogue and shot down each of my own excuses, I prayed. I asked God for the energy and oomph to to get out of the rocking chair, lay down my sleeping baby (and be okay with the fact that he would likely wake up sooner than if I was holding him) and go to my kitchen. I don’t always listen to God’s prompting but then I was reminded by a still, small Voice that, last month, I made a commitment to pursue the hearts of my children.
So I did it.
I’m sure there was just as much cheering in Heaven as there was in my house when the boys discovered what I was doing. Cheering for their happiness as well as cheering for my small triumph. God even blessed me with Baby Bear sleeping in his seat for awhile so I resisted the temptation to check a few things off of my to do list so I could play with my bigger boys. After I had rocked Baby Bear back to sleep, I had the entertainment of 2 little boys and their creative imaginations:
There were 10 invisible puppies involved who lived in the wall and got a ride to town for ice cream in Bumblebee and Heatwave (affiliate link to a couple of my kids’ favorite gifts from this past Christmas). Biscuit even asked the puppies to help him put the playdough away at tidy time. He held the bag open for them to put the playdough in. It was great in theory but then the puppies jumped in the bag instead. They only came out to jump on Papa Bear’s head and eat ice cream. The puppies have visited every day since then and continue to be a great source of imaginative play, even without the playdough.
Another benefit of making playdough that day is the renewed motivation it gave me to spend purposeful time with my children, in their world. They have asked me more often these last days to play with them. And I’ve been saying “yes” more often (though I did have to draw the line at digging in the giant snow pile because it just doesn’t seem safe to do that with Baby Bear in the sling).
I’m pursuing the hearts of my children by having a daily focus time, joining them in whatever they are playing. And you know what? I’m relearning how to play and it’s kind of fun!
What kind of play have you joined your children in lately?
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