Friday, April 20, 2012

{kid craft} play cat food

As a regular reader of this blog you might have noticed that cats are a big thing at my house. We have three of them. And the brothers have quite a few more of the stuffed version. Those are really nice to have around actually: they don't follow you around the house meowing; they don't want to be let out only to stand in the open door, stick their little furry nose outside and slooooowly sit down because they can't decide whether they want in or out; while they do sleep in the bed, they don't claim your pillow; they don't have a litter box to clean and they don't need to be fed. Well, until now.

"Mom, my cat needs to eat something, too!" demands big brother and gets a bowl from the kids stuff drawer in the kitchen. "Mine, too!" seconds little brother, as little brothers like to do. Of course he also goes and grabs a bowl. 

They share the wooden cat food that came with big brother's play store. "Share" means that big brother's cat gets a bowl full while little brother's cat gets three little pieces. Apparently, little brother's cat was not thrilled with this outcome, and neither was little brother. "But I did share my cat food" big brother defends himself. He has a point. So before the rest of the lunch is overtaken about discussions about hungry toy cats, I suggest we make some more cat food.

Before I had kids I never imagines I would say sentences like that. Or even think about play cat food, let alone how to make it. Oh well. 

Since I wasn't going to break out the saw and make those tiny wooden fish and little squares that came with big brother's cat food, we got out some polymer clay from the German brand Fimo. I bought this a while ago due to some fond memories of my mom and me making all sorts of stuff from it. I was a little bit shocked when I unpacked it and saw all those huge warning signs stuck all over it, saying that basically kids under 8 shouldn't be using this anyway and even older kids required adult supervision. Oh, ok.

We went ahead anyway, making sure to take off the good shirts, cover the table and keep everyone's hands out of their mouths. Since this stuff is like fairly hard play dough, I took over the rolling out part and had the brothers choose colors, cut pieces with a table knife and cut out tiny fish with a tiny fish cookie cutter. 

Yep, we have tiny little fish shaped cookie cutters. When big brother was little and just started preschool, cutting his sandwich into tiny little fish was the best way to get him to actually have breakfast in preschool, and also the cleanest, as these fish are so small they can be put into little mouths in one bite, so you can sandwich messy things like cream cheese inbetween without getting it all over them. We used to call them breadfish. 

Anyhow. The brothers chose turquoise and yellow (no surprises here) and we added brown and orange as in the wooden cat food. We cut out shapes and put them on a sheet of aluminum foil for baking them in the oven. Once fully cooled, the shapes harden and can be fed to our large litter of terribly hungry toy cats. Yum.

Now, I wouldn't do this with really small kids around or worse yet, crawling babies ot toddlers who still put everything in their mouths except for broccoli, but frankly, with all the tiny Playmobil and Lego pieces around the house, a few Fimo cat food pieces don't really make much of a difference anymore.

Well, most of the yellow and all of the turquoise and brown are gone, but any suggestions on what to make with the remaining colors of green, red, white and blue?

Happy crafting,

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