Thursday, May 05, 2011

More Bright Green Fun. No Fur This Time.

Yesterday I committed a Cardinal Sin of Pacific Northwest Parenting. I promised my children an activity without checking the weather forecast first. Overcome by the stunning appearance of the sun and a temperature above 60 degrees, I lost my head and committed to making an afterschool trip to the zoo today so we could see the new dinosaur exhibit.

And then today we woke up to this:

Cold. Dark. Dreary. Drippy.

I love my children as much as the next parent but it has been a long winter and I just could not drag myself outside in this kind of weather again. Nuh uh. No how. No way. Not happening.

Anticipating Dual Meltdowns of Colossal Proportions, I spent the morning brainstorming for something, Anything! that would Distract and Deflect my impending doom.

Thank God for the Interwebs. My bacon was saved (again) by the Crafty Blogosphere.

And so, I acquired this:

Yup. Bright green pool noodle.

And some black duct tape with racing style flame on it.

Perfect combination.

What? You haven't always wanted a bright green pool noodle and flame duct tape? What is wrong with you people?

Okay, okay. What if I... Cut the noodle in half? Lengthwise.


Alright then. Let's take the cut noodle and the duct tape and add
  • a shoebox
  • cardstock
  • double stick tape
  • bamboo skewers
  • letter stickers
  • wrapping paper
and heck, some crochet thread for good measure.

Are you with me now?

Well, you should be because this odd jumble produces a pretty cool (and cheap)

Marble Race Track from a Pool Noodle


My kids always love the marble tracks we see in stores or other places but I don't know if they would ever play with them enough to justify the expense- some of those wooden sets are Expensive!

This is a quick and dirty imitation which happily keeps the kidlets entertained and occupied! Hooray! (I know G doesn't look terribly pleased in that picture but she was intent on digging her marbles out of the little purse she keeps them in and was not at all interested in making nice for the camera)

All the credit for this brilliant idea goes to Amy of Serving Pink Lemonade who posted this craft as part of the Summer Soiree Craft Camp for Kids over on Home-Spun Threads.

I changed the project up a bit, deciding I would duct tape my tracks together- no way MY children were going to be gentle enough to keep the tracks together with just the "flag posts" (and besides, if you are making a race track, you might as well find an excuse to use the crazy flame duct tape). I used bamboo skewers instead of toothpicks for the Start and Finish Banners.

I added some racing flags because I'm crazy like that and seem to have a penchant for adding layers of complexity to things. And lastly, I covered my shoebox in some silver wrapping paper I had lying around to give the whole thing a more finished appearance.

All around winner. The kids are pleased so I'm pleased.

Now I can cook dinner in peace.

Ready. Set. GO!

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