Awhile back we were playing with bug-shaped macaroni (see here) and I knew then that I would dye those shapes along with some rotini and ditali. I followed the directions from Many Little Blessings to dye the pasta. It's quick and easy, although a bit smelly (the combination of rubbing alcohol on the pasta, peeeeuuuu). If you have never dyed pasta before, give it a try the kids will love it.
All that's needed is rubbing alcohol, food dye, zip top bags and of course your pasta. In a zip top bag, pour 1/2 cup of rubbing alcohol and 10 drops of liquid food dye (or 1/4 inch squirt of gel food dye- sorry about the strange measurement). Close the zip top bag and squish and shake to combine. Open the bag and pour in one to two cups of dried pasta. Close the baggie and shake. The kiddies love this part. Repeat with the next color. Meanwhile, keep the pasta in the closed bags for two hours or until the desired color has been achieved. Pour the dyed pasta out onto an old towel. Allow to dry overnight. That's it, easy peasy lemon squeezy.
When dying the pasta we discovered that gel food dyes produce a deeper richer color (the purple is so deep purple, it's almost black) than liquid food dye. We dyed the box of bug-shapes, along with a box each of rotini and ditali. I wanted enough rainbow pasta to use for necklaces (you have to make necklaces - it's a classic), macaroni art (another classic), some math patterning games and to use in their pretend kitchen.
Little Miss decided that she wanted to use our food-dyed glue to make macaroni art.
Look at those little pincers working. You can really see it in the picture on the left.
It's fun and easy practice for holding a pencil.
Squeezing a glue bottle takes quite a bit of hand strength,
plus the coordination of squeezing the glue exactly where you want it.
Wild One decided that instead of working with glue, he wanted to make a necklace.
I love watching him concentrate.
Wild One discovered after threading a few tiny ditalis that they disappear underneath the rotini.
Threading is great practice for hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
Ta da, their finished necklaces! These were supposed to be quick pictures of them in their finished necklaces. Wild One completely filled his, whereas Little Miss preferred to have just one of each color rotini. It's amazing how different these two twins are.
Time for a quick gripe moment. I have seen so many beautiful photographs of kids posing for pictures. Smiling, when asked to smile. Facing the camera, instead of looking away. My two have NEVER (since birth) posed for pictures. Any pictures of the two of them smiling at the same time is completely a fluke (or tricked by tickles). I was able to capture a few shots (yes blurry) of them dancing around in the necklaces- this was supposed to be when I was taking a picture of the two of them wearing the necklace.
Look at those faces! So happy. I'm so lucky.