Mix all but the last ingredient in a small saucepan. Cook over a very low heat until it turns into a dough (it’ll take just a few minutes). Knead the dough on a floured surface until cool enough for kids to touch. Separate the dough into as many colors as you want to make. Put just a few drops of FOOD coloring in each ball and knead until evenly mixed.
*Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for several months.
If you’re looking for a rainy day activity, nothing beats a fort in the living room. When my son was smaller he got the biggest kick out of playing in giant cardboard boxes. We would color them, and cut “windows” out for him to look through. A “fort” could be as simple as a few kitchen chairs gathered in a circle with a large bed sheet thrown across them and draped to the floor. The kids can hide from mom and dad, read books, or pretend they are camping out in the living room.
Have several dozen water balloons filled and put into a box or laundry basket in the back yard. Have an all-out balloon fight, or make a game out of it like a water balloon toss – the kids start close together, but take a step back with each toss to increase the distance. Kids are out if their balloon breaks when they try to catch it. The last one to break the balloon is the winner. Lots of fun, but be sure to pick up the balloon remains, especially if you have very little ones or pets as they could be a choking hazard.
Kids enjoy helping others and the summer is a perfect time to strike up a relationship with your favorite charity or religious organization. Do you have an elderly neighbor that could use some help around the house? Kids can wash windows, do dishes, or rake up the yard. Just ask! For ideas on places your kids can volunteer call 2-1-1 or visit www.CompassionateKids.org
Have Your Child Create a "Mini-Me"
Find a piece of large poster board, or large heavy-duty paper (such as a butcher paper) wide enough for your kids to lie down on. You could also use the flip side of wrapping paper, especially if it’s the heavier kind. Just make sure your child lays on a totally flat surface. Use a dull pencil (less chance for boo-boos) to trace their entire body to the paper from head to toe. Now let the kids decorate their ‘mini-me’ kid to look like themselves in the same clothes they are wearing, same color eyes, hair, etc. When they are finished, help them cut out their mini-me for proud display.Take a Hike
Summer is the perfect time to hike at your Metro Park or Maumee Bay State Park. For locations, ideas and details visit www.metroparkstoledo.com
Go For a Swim
Residents of northwest Ohio have a number of options when it comes to finding a public pool, whether for splashing around with the kids, swimming laps or killing a day in the sun.
Here’s a rundown of some of the public pools in the area and the associated fees:
CITY OF TOLEDO: The city has 12 public swimming pools that open June 17th and close August 14th.
COMPLEX POOLS: (larger pools with diving boards): Detwiler, 3901 290th St., 936-3417; Highland, 1800 South Ave., 936-2865; Ravine, 290 Dearborn Ave., 936-3014; Willys, 1375 Hillcrest Ave., 936-2928. Tuesday through Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. Children 5 and under free. Children 6-12 and senior citizens, 75 cents. All others: $1.50.
INTERMEDIATE POOL: Roosevelt, 910 Dorr St., 936-2501. Tuesday through Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. Free admission.
WATER PLAY PARK: Savage, 645 Vance St., 936-2807. Monday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Free admission.
JUNIOR POOLS: Ashley, 141 Knower St., 936-2503; Collins, 624 Reineck Drive, 936-3013; Navarre, 1001 White St., 936-3064; Pickford, 3000 Medford Drive, 936-2863; Jamie Farr, 2000 Summit St., 936-3072; Wilson, 3253 Otto St., 936-3071. Monday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Free admission.
BOWLING GREEN: The Family Aquatics Center opens May 31 and operates on a varied schedule throughout the summer. The weekday hours of operation May 31-June 10 are 3:30-7 p.m. for open swim. Weekday hours June 13-Aug. 5 are 1:30-5:15 for open swim and 6:30-8:30 for adult and family swim. Weekday hours Aug. 8-26 are 1-7 p.m. Weekend and holiday hours from May 28-Aug.28 are 1 to 7 p.m.
Daily admission is $3 for students and adults, and $1 for children under 6.
FOSTORIA: The Fostoria Community Water Park, 549 River St., will be open June 11-Aug. 14. Hours Saturday through Thursday are 1-7 p.m. Friday hours are 1-8 p.m. Daily admission is $3 for children and $4 for adults. Season passes are available, including discounts for members of the local YMCA.
FINDLAY: Riverside Pool in Riverside Park, 231 McManness, opens June 4. Hours Monday through Saturday are 12-5 p.m. and 6:30-8:30 p.m. Sunday hours are 1-6 p.m. Admission is $3 for those 4 years and older. Children under 3 are free. Season passes are available.
FREMONT: The city s pool at the Fremont Community Recreation Complex, 600 St. Joseph Street. Daily admission is $2 for children, $1 for Senior Citizens and $4 for adults. Pool hours are weekdays 12-5:45 p.m. and weekends 12-6 p.m. Residency restrictions apply.
GENOA: The village’s swimming quarry on Washington Street is open. Weekday hours are 1-5 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Weekend hours are noon-8 p.m. Admission is $3 for adults and $2 for children. Season passes are available.
OREGON: The city has an agreement that allows residents to use the outdoor pool at the Eastern Community YMCA on Pickle Road. Hours are noon-8 p.m. After residents pay a $5 or $10 registration fee through the YMCA, admission is $3 for a family, $2 for an adult, and $1.50 for a youth.
PEMBERVILLE: The pool at Memorial Park on College Avenue will open Memorial Day weekend. Daily hours are 1-5 p.m. and 6:30-9:30 p.m. Admission is $2.50 per person, and a family season pass costs $200.
PERRYSBURG: The Municipal Pool, 227 Silver Maple Drive, and Three Meadows Pond, 700 Three Meadows Court, will be open June 4 through Aug. 28. Pool hours are 1 to 8:30 p.m. daily, except when closed for home swim meets between 4:30 and 7 p.m. Pond hours are 11:30 a.m.-7 p.m. daily. Single admission is $2 for residents, $5 for nonresidents, and free for children 5 and under. Ask about Senior Citizen discounts.
MAUMEE: Rolf Park Pool, 2115 Cass Rd., will be open until Aug. 26. The pool will be open from noon to 5:45 p.m. on June 4 and 5 and from 3 to 7:45 p.m. on June 6, 7, and 8. Beginning June 9, regular hours are 1 to 7:45 p.m. Monday through Friday and noon to 5:45 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Daily admission costs $3 for residents and $10 for nonresidents. Children 5 and under get in free if they are residents and for $3 if they are nonresidents.
NAPOLEON: The city pool is in Glenwood Park on Glenwood Avenue. Hours Sunday through Friday are 12:30-5 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Saturday hours are 12:30-5 p.m. Admission is $2.50 for those 18 years and younger and $3 for adults.
TIFFIN: The city s pool at Hedges-Boyer Park on Coe Street is open. A family swim is offered weekdays 12-1 p.m. and on Fridays 5-8 p.m. Regular hours are Monday through Thursday, 1-8 p.m., Fridays, 1-5 p.m., and weekends, 1-8 p.m. Daily resident passes are $2 for youth, $4 for adults, and $9 for families.
WALBRIDGE: Aqua Terrace Pool. Daily hours are noon-8 p.m. Admission is $2 per resident, or $3.75 per nonresident. Resident season passes are $110 per family, and $175 per family for nonresidents.
WAUSEON: The city’s Reighard Park pool, located just off Oak Street, is open. Daily fee is $2; evening swim from 6-9 p.m. is $1. Family/Senior hour is 5 to 6 p.m. Swim lessons are $15. Pool hours are Monday through Friday, and Sunday, 1 to 9 p.m. The pool is open from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday.
WOODVILLE: The pool is at Trail Marker Park near the corner of South Cherry and Erie Streets.
MAUMEE BAY STATE PARK: The beach is open and always free!!