As the first grandchildren on both sides of our family, it’s safe to say that we have enough inventory to open a toy store in our home. Before I had the twins, I made the delusional pronouncement that my children would only play with classic wooden toys and imagined that they would spend many happy hours building cabins with Lincoln Logs and quietly spelling words with their ABC blocks. Now fast forward to the present, where to my great chagrin, I am surrounded by things that flash, beep, squeal, and sing until I want to run screaming for the hills. However, I do find some strange comfort in the fact even though they have access to this abundance of blinking plastic, my babies seem to prefer playing with garbage most of the time. One of their favorite “toys” to filch from the recycle bin is an empty plastic water bottle. Although just a plain ole’ bottle is very exciting to them, filling the bottles with small objects and trinkets for them to shake adds even more to the appeal. So, when I was trying to come up with an idea for creative, age-appropriate valentines for all of their little playgroup friends (while staring around at the gazillion bottles cluttering up my living room floor), I had an “Aha!” moment, and the All Shook Up Valentine was born.
Wanna make your own? Easy! Find a container that you like- we used child-sized water bottles that were the perfect size for tiny hands. Remove the label- I used Goo Gone to remove any stubborn residue. Now you are ready to add a generous handful of beads, sequins, trinkets, and/or glitter. Some people add colorful ribbon for a “swirly” effect.Tip: Something I added to my bottles turned the water brown after a couple of days, so you might want to make a test bottle first if you are worried about it. I think the culprit was some wooden alphabet beads in my case, but you never know!
Fill the bottle about 3/4 of the way with water or baby oil. I used tap water, but some prefer baby oil to slow the movement of the objects when you shake them.
Add a cute tag with some pretty ribbon.
Now, shake it up and watch it sparkle!
Then hand it over to your official product tester. And the verdict is…
Two thumbs up!
Until next time…