This afternoon while Miss Moo slept and Miss Roo played with some toys in the family room, I completed step one of their wooden Easter eggs.
Moo has always been interested in cooking- whether it is real cooking that is going on in my kitchen or something she is making in her playroom. Her felt veggies are strewn all over our downstairs and she often brings her own utensils to the dinner table. I often wonder if the poor girl was doomed to this fate because she spent months listening to The Food Network before she arrived. None the less, she has a certain love of cooking and has been know to host her own shows while busily baking away in her kitchen.
With Easter fast approaching, all our local stores have been filled (really since February) with little, plastic eggs. Moo is always quick to point them out to me. She asked a few times for some eggs and I suppose she quickly learned that I wasn't going to buy any. I'm not trying to keep her from having a dozen eggs in her kitchen, but I AM trying to cut down on the plastic junk that enters our house. Not buying these eggs to have little "treats" in their Easter baskets also forced me to think of some other solution for egging up my girls this Sunday.
A few weeks ago I ordered supplies to make Miss Roo's birthday gifts. As I searched for one last item to push me into free shipping (yes I'm one of THOSE) I noticed that there was a fruit and vegetable section. I clicked through and there they were - wooden hen's eggs! PLOP! In the cart they went. After everything arrived I pulled out the bag of 25 unfinished eggs and stared. How could I make some prettier without worrying about a huge, toxic paint mess. I turned to the pantry and saw food coloring. Hrmmm...I wonder.... off to the Googles!
Yes, you CAN make dye with food coloring.
So I did. There was no scientific method to my dying experiment. There was no measuring or determination of ratios. I simply squirted what was left of a little bottle of blue dye into one of my Pyrex bowls and then filled it to the top with water. Whisk whisk. I plopped in two wooden eggs and pushed them around. I looked at my eggs and then my fingers. I grabbed some gloves from under the sink and returned to my eggs.
The eggs began to turn blue. I let them set in the dye bath for about five minutes and then dyed two more. They looked amazing! I grabbed the bottle of yellow dye and dumped it in. Plunk! Two more eggs in. GREEN!! GREEN EGGS! Won't THEY be handy on March 2! After about 5 minutes, I dyed another round and them dumped the green. I next tried red.
I LOVE this craft for several reasons. These eggs are versatile- the girls can play with them, cook with them, count with them, sort with them, and have egg hunts with them. These eggs are durable- they are solid wood eggs so dropping them or stepping on them won't send them on a one way trip to the landfill. These eggs are visually appealing- they look like real eggs and have a similar weight to them as well. The light wood lent itself to a hue of that of a real, dyed egg. These eggs are personal - rather than running to the local X-Mart, Mama made these little guys pretty for each of her girls. And these eggs are part of my reduce/reuse plan- food coloring is being phased out for consumption in our house, so this was a non-wasteful completion of it's life here.
Tomorrow my play is to seal the eggs with my wood wax (I'll have a link to that on Saturday along with an exciting adventure for me!). I want to give the little babies 24 hours to soak in all the dye.
So there they are! Let's hope my little chef and her colleague enjoy their fresh, local eggs!