Saturday, August 18, 2012

Lavender Playdough: How I Learned to Love Playdough Play for Baby & Toddler

The Imagination Tree and Famiglia and Seoul convinced me that I should give Herb Playdough a try. I loved that the recipe from The Imagination Tree required no cooking, just boiling hot water (so having Wild Thing help required close supervision). For the herbs, we used primarily lavender, and a little rosemary and dried basil. We made this a couple of weeks ago, but it still smells so good every time we get it out -- and I just keep it stored in a bag on a shelf in the kitchen.

I used to avoid playdough with the baby, but really enjoyed discovering great ways for the baby to play with the playdough. Plus, when we make it ourselves at home with safe ingredients, I don't have to worry if a little goes in his mouth and I have to remind him that the playdough is not to eat. (If he eats a little, he's eating flour, salt, herbs and water -- no biggie!)

Putting playdough balls in an egg carton with toys worked well for Caterpillar. He had fun taking the items in and out of the egg carton, opening and closing the egg carton and throwing the playdough balls. 

Hopping the frogs on the playdough was a hit.
But, I think his favorite thing was adding more herbs.

Even with Wild Thing (almost 3),  I hadn't made playdough in quite a few months because Wild Thing would get out playdough toys and start the process of creating animals, shapes, etc. but then usually want me to do so much of it for him. Recently, though, I discovered that using the playdough for pretend play created a whole other experience for him and me -- one that is much more enjoyable. 

He loved pretending that Thomas and Percy were stuck and liked making different patterns using the trains - both by laying the trains on their sides and driving them on the playdough. I think the look/texture of the herb playdough worked especially well for this since it has a natural/terrain look to it. Now, instead of dreading playdough (like I used to), it has become a go-to play activity for me for both Wild Thing and Caterpillar, especially when they need a controlled, quiet activity.

Sharing at: Montessori Monday

You might also like:
DIY Lavender Bath Scrubs
Homemade Pop Tarts


  1. I agree The Imagination Tree has GREAT playdough recipes. Love your lavender playdough. Looks like you had a lovely time together.

    Thank you for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!


  2. That is a fun idea to add the herbs to the play dough. It adds a nice texture and scent. I love the idea of rolling the trains through the dough. Our kids would love that!

    Thanks for linking to Artsy Play Wednesday on Capri + 3.

    : 0 ) Theresa

  3. What an interesting idea. I have never heard of adding herbs to playdough. I have a lavender bush in my garden, so may give it a go.

  4. Lavender Playdough! What a great idea. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Oh, how fun!! I love adding the scents to the play dough. I love your idea of the egg carton as well. Thank you for sharing at Happy Family Times!!

  6. So Sweet! Thanks for sharing this beautiful craft/play project with us at tip toe thru tuesday!

  7. Hi Jenny, Pinterest led me to your wonderful blog, and seeing my blog is all about Pinteresting, I mentioned your pin/blog in my recent post. I loved this play dough and so did my daughter, such a nice change from the usual. My blog is still under construction but you are welcome to take a look at -
    Hope to mention you again soon!
    Amy (My Pinteresting Life)

  8. My son would love getting Thomas and Percy stuck in some playdough mud. Definitely going to set that up for him this week. Thanks!

  9. I love that this play dough has herbs in it! And I am so glad you learned to love play dough!