Lava Lamps

There aren’t many crafts that catch Danny’s attention, but now that summer is here and I’m doing more table time with Eric, I’ve been trying to find activities they will both enjoy – or ones I can easily modify and do at two levels at once.

When I saw a craft for lava lamps, I immediately knew it would captivate them both.

As a bonus for this totally not crafty mom, it was super easy to do!

The prep Eric and I did alone, mostly for the potential spill factor. First, we filled a water bottle a little more than halfway with oil. Honestly, after doing it, I should have gone more for 3/4 full – now I know!

Once that’s done, I filled it the rest of the way with water, leaving about an inch at the top. Be careful to add the water slowly, or you will get a bubbly mess in your bottle! Fortunately, the bubbly one was the first, and they dissipated while I prepped a second bottle real quick.

Eric loved adding the food coloring – 10 drops to start. (There were many, many more before we were done!)

This is where I brought Danny in, and we went to town. I broke a few Alka-Seltzer tablets into quarters and let the boys drop in one piece at a time. Bam! Lava lamps!

Danny giggled in delight, dropping in tablet after tablet as I handed them over, and Eric “experimented” – his words, not mine! He started playing with the colors, and he was amazed when he added yellow drops to his blue bottle and got green!

Awesome bonus, as the bottles got more saturate with Alka-Seltzer, we started getting little tornadoes in the bottles.

This lasted a good hour, the older boys having a blast with the bottles, Andrew doing his favorite thing: watching his brothers. I ran downstairs at one point and printed off this simple color chart, and Eric learned a bit about colors, too! Then, of course, he started turning the food coloring bottles into a tower, then into battling ninjas, but hey… It’s the thought that counts.

I think this is definitely one we will repeat!

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