Toddler + Beige Carpet + Paint Extravaganza = No Mess, No Fear…actually F-U-N!

Oh finger paint, how I love thee.

My kid likes paint.

It’s a pretty bold statement to make, but it is, in fact, true.

Diva is attracted to paint almost as much as Paisley-the-dog is attracted to the couch.

This is MY couch. Duh.

That being said, Diva would paint all day if I let her.

If she turns out to be a mini-Picasso, I have a list of things she can give her ever-adoring, champion-of-the-arts Mother upon making it big.

That being said, I live in a rental. A rental that has inexplicably, like so many rentals, been carpeted with a light beige carpet. WHO DOES THAT? It attracts dirt. It is a devil to clean and, something I am more that a little bit proud of, it has not had a drop of paint on it! At least not from me!

For a while I was terrified of painting with the toddler. The mess. The carpets. The fact that she has  a strong desire to fling things arbitrarily. It is terrifying to envision my walls spattered with “toddler tantrum in fuschia.”

Eventually, though. I bit the bullet. It makes her happy. Far be it from me to quash her artistic spirit.

Here is Simply Bekah’s Simply Perfect Painting Method. (and it’s cheap)

  1.  Go to local dollar store and get a plastic table cloth. Ours has Tinkerbell on it. 
  2. Check the art supplies, if you see some spare brushes or a pad of paint paper…pick it up. Also pick up a smock if they have one. 
  3. Get paint. I have used watercolors (kinda boring), Crayola Easy-Clean Finger Paints (a gift from God!), Ceramacoat Acrylics (with SUPERVISION ONLY!), paint pens (ehh, not really worth the $$) and poster paint (handy to have around.) I keep it all in an all plastic file box that locks. Invest in one if you don’t have one. It will be the best $8 ever.
  4. While at Michael’s or wherever you are getting your paint stuff, decide if there are any projects you want to envision your little mini-Rembrandt to try out. Those little wooden boxes and bird houses make awesome gifts…just saying…plus, they are cheap. So are picture frames. 
  5. Decide where you are going to  paint.  Our top three locations are: Kitchen floor (tile= easier to clean), kitchen table (easier to supervise) or outside on the patio (when it’s warm. it never appears to be warm here.) 
  6. Spread surface with giant table cloth. Protect (by moving) anything that you think is in the general paint spatter zone. 
  7. Strip child down to undies and apron. 
  8. If you have a frisbee handy, it makes a great paint tray. Squirt paint in tray. Brushes are optional unless it’s watercolors. 
  9. I use a storage lid  to further protect my space, a piece of shelving would work great too. 
  10. Tell your Picasso to have at it!

When all finished, pack up your box, dump your kid in the shower and be amazed at the two hours of general peace you  just had because they were enthralled with paint!

Note: non-toxic paints are always best. Do not leave a painting toddler unsupervised unless you want your toddler to paint their entire body, the dog and the tupperware water dish in the course of 2 minutes flat. I learned this the hard way. I think Paisley still has a tint of  green in her left ear. Hopefully that will wear out eventually.

CRAFT IDEA: Finger paint on 6 different pieces of paper. Go down to the office center and get them all laminated. Voila! Instant place mats. Or, get out your paper cutter, slice up the art into fun shapes, laminate them, cut them out and voila! instant puzzle…or coasters…or ornaments for relatives to hang on their Christmas tree…or really cute gift tags. There are really so many things you can do with laminating and children’s art. 

That wasn’t so hard, was it? It’s not so scary!

Here is our painting adventure in pictures!

Toddler and mommy paint day! Handprint art is something I really enjoy! I wish I had been doing this with her from the get go!

Our painting station!

One of my new future placemats! As soon as it dries, it is going to be laminated and now I have cute kid-friendly table setting for play dates! Or for future playdoh projects!

the box-o-paint! Everything but the lid that I use as a space protector fits in this box and it all slides nicely into the cubby hole. It's great. The whole box, plus assorted kinds of paint, apron, brushes, paper, pastels...all of it was purchased a little here and a little there for well under $50. Score.

Peace, love and paint!



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