Summer has begin, and with it, so has our MISSION:Impossible summer theme. (Check out that link for my list of over 50 varied and fun summer activities!) Okay, so I get that we're only 1 day (uh, or 3/4 of a day) into it, but I gotta tell you, I love this plan! We're going to have so much fun!
First off, I have to say, our daily routine went smoothly. I'll add one or two things over the next week, but for now it's great. I just have to make sure to be consistent so the kids know we are really doing it every day. (Why is it so hard to be consistent, anyway?)
This afternoon, when it rolled around to a good time, I brought the kids into the kitchen with me one by one. We talked over the designs they liked and wanted, added rubberbands to to their white tees, and then it was the next one's turn. (Funny story - after explaining to Ben he couldn't have a ninja or mountains or a forest on his shirt, he went with a spiral "whirlpool" and 2 twists "tornadoes". Love that little mind of his!
When that was all over I got our dying kit out and started getting it all ready. I was originally planning on getting Rit dye in a few colors, but at the craft store I saw a kit that had enough for 5+ shirts in it, and it was cheaper, so I got it. Amazon doesn't seem to have the same kit I used, but here's a list of some similar ones.
I would have loved to just let the kids go nuts with the dyes, but I thought better of it, and just had them help and coach me on what colors they wanted and where. Good thing, too, since it was still plenty messy and my hands make me look like Smurfette.
To minimize mess, I used plastic wrap to cover our little card table. I also brought out a pan for water, that we rinsed and refilled regularly, to soak the shirts before adding the dye.
Here's what it all looked like -
We dyed Madi's first. All blue and greens. This is when I figured out that it works great to squeeze the dye into the fabric to distribute it well. I think it went further this way (I was a little worried we might ot have enough dye for all 5 shirt - but there was plenty left over!)
Ben's was next. Here's another little tip - lay out a cookie sheet to work on to catch spills, and run a length of plastic wrap over it. Work on the t-shirt on top of that, and then roll the tee in the plastic wrap afterwards.
James was next - he was waiting patiently and watching the whole time, eager for his turn. He wanted a yellow shirt with orange-y stripes down the side. It was fast and easy!
Then Sam's. This kid is great, I tell you, and he's so serious and earnest sometimes. He wants things to be just right, and so he rethinks and second-guesses and worries over these kinds of things. I finally told him to just choose - have fun with it - and no-ones was going to be perfect, but it was all a big experiment. That helped, and once I started adding the dye, he kept suggesting changing this here, and adding that there. He ended up with a pretty wild shirt!
And now the shirts are sitting outside, wrapped in their plastic wrap, letting the dye set in and the cloth to dry. Tonight I'll rinse them in cool water until the water runs clear, and then wash them in a normal cycle in the washer and dryer. And tomorrow we can see how their shirts turned out!
I can't wait! I'm really impatient to see what their different designs look like, and they keep checking on their shirts and asking about them, so I'm pretty sure they feel the same way!
By the way, and this is huge - MADELIN took every single picture in this post! She loves to take pictures, and it was so fun seeing her check out different perspectives and all. I'm so impressed!