Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Bubble, Bubble, Me Toil, Kids Stay Out of Trouble

I scored that stand on Freecycle a couple years ago from a daycare that was going out of business.  The lady that ran it used it for an outdoor hand washing station, but I find that it works great as a bubble station!  The original bin that came with it got a crack in the bottom, so I just put a smaller one that I had laying around in it instead.

In my quest to figure out a recipe for homemade shampoo (hopefully resulting in a recipe I can post here in a week or two!), I was reminded that I've been meaning to post my recipe for bubble stuff.  After all, what kid, or alleged grown-up for that matter, can resist the allure of blowing bubbles on a lovely spring afternoon? 

Yes, it did finally mostly stop raining here in the temperate former rain forest known to most as mid-Michigan.  The kids and I have been spending most of our afternoons outside, me toiling away, digging grave-like garden beds and the children playing.  I love them playing with the bubbles since it keeps them out of trouble (see how that overly silly title plays in?  It actually makes sense in context and isn't just the product of writing far too late at night when I should be sleeping!) right near where I'm working so I can keep an eye on them without having to chase them all over the place.  Giant vats of bubble stuff is guaranteed to keep them entertained for a while!  Store bought bubble stuff would be far too expensive in the volume we use it, so I took a lesson from children's museums and made my own. 

Bubble Stuff

10 parts water
1 part liquid dishwashing soap (like Dawn or Joy, but I use the storebrand natural stuff)
teensy bit of glycerin (optional)

Combine all ingredients and use.  The mixture can be used immediately, but it works best if left a while to settle, since it is awfully sudsy when first mixed up.  I make large batches, so 10 cups water and 1 cup dishwashing soap, with about 2 tbsp of glycerin when I can find it (which I can't currently and I need to figure out where it ended up when we moved, because I think I want to put some in my shampoo!) to help the bubbles hold together after being blown, is standard operating procedure in my house.  Smaller quantities work too, though, as I was recently reminded when refilling bubble necklaces that my mother-in-law got the kids for Easter.  I just put a dollup of dishwashing soap into the container after they had filled it with water and they have a never-ending supply of bubbles!

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