"I want to do some mixing, you know, like I always do, but with something new, something I've never tried before!"
We were talking about making some playdough, or experimenting with "powders". Now I had a challenge to find something "new" to add to the usual mix.
"How about some spices?"
This was not exactly new, since he often likes to add spices to the mixture.
"Are there any new spices?".
There were not. So I pulled out the step stool and moved over to the pantry.
"Let's see, anything new up here?"
A large bag of cornmeal used for making polenta caught my eye with its rich golden yellow color. I tried to make the offer as appealing as possible:
"I found some magic yellow powder!".
"No it's not! Is that cornmeal?"
So much for my attempt at pretend play. "Yes, it's cornmeal, and it's new, we've never tried it before." I was in:
"Okay good, give it to me!"
The result was a gritty golden-hued playdough, perfect for making pretend spaghetti, cakes, and even sushi. We just added some cornmeal to replace some of the flour in the usual recipe (1 cup flour, 1 cup salt, 1 cup water). No need for food coloring - the yellow color was gorgeous.
An hour later, it was time to start thinking about dinner. I made the offer:
"Would you like to make some real spaghetti, you know that we can eat for dinner?".
It had been ages since I'd pulled out the pasta maker, and the device felt like a novelty.
"Yes, but I want to do it!"
"Of course we'll do it together".
And we did!