What is better than… Imagination… and Mud!
This Combination of mud and imagination is described perfectly in
What’s Wrong with Mud?
Written by: Gillian Colley
Illustrated by: Nikki Shoemaker
Beautiful, fun, kid friendly illustrations paired with an awesome children’s story!
Playing in the mud is the perfect example of childhood play, and is fun for kids of all ages. There is nothing quite like the wonderfully, gooey texture of mud when it is mixed with just the right amount of water. With less water, the mud can be molded and shaped, and left to dry. It can be used to make the most creative mud pies, cakes, forts, and sculptures. Mud play provides children with a natural opportunity to experience an entire range of sensations. It sparks imaginations and inspires creativity.
Kids generally need very little encouragement to play in the mud. I’ve included some ideas of things to use for mud play, and have listed some playful ideas to get you started.
Assemble a Mud Play Bucket
- Old containers, such as margarine tubs, ice cream buckets, plastic peanut butter jars
- Large wooden or metal spoons
- Old measuring cups
- Plastic scoops, like those found in coffee cans
- Old pots, pans, or cake pans
Fun Things to Do In the Mud
Need a little help getting started? Here are some of our favorite things to do in the mud!
- Make mud pies and cakes! Use old containers to “bake” in, and different colored dirt. Once the mud pies and cakes are created, decorate with small pebbles, flowers, or leaves.
- Make mud houses! Use sticks for supports. Include tunnels, secret rooms, and even a moat!
- Make mud balls! Shape mud into balls by rolling the “dough” in your hands. Decorate the balls with flowers, leaves, rocks, or small twigs. Stack the mud balls on top of each other to create a unique sculpture.
- Make mud prints! Place your mud-covered hands and feet on a clean sheet of paper to make an impression. Sidewalks and driveways are good substitutes for paper!
- Draw in the mud! Use a stick and draw pictures in the mud. Easy to “erase” and start all over again.
- Make rivers and dams! Dig a river in the dirt and add water. Build a dam to form a small puddle.
- Don’t have a supply of dirt in your yard? Bring a couple of buckets to your local garden center and buy a bucket of clean fill, black dirt, and sand. The investment is very small, and the joy your kids will have are worth it!
- Use scrap lumber to build a small table or box that your kids can use for mud play activities. This will help keep the mud contained and can be set up anywhere in your yard, including on a patio or deck. If you prefer, buy a small wading pool to fill with dirt for mud play activities.
- The best soil for playing in the mud has a high clay content, this works great for making mud balls and sculptures.
Mud is just good, clean dirt that can be washed off easily. Go ahead! Play in the mud and have fun!
And of course I could never leave out a person that doesn’t like to get their hands dirty outside.
Enjoy some of your own mud right in your kitchen!
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup butter
- 3 tablespoons cocoa
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk or milk (I use evaporated milk)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup peanut butter (I use crunchy PB)
- 3 cups oatmeal (I prefer old fashioned oats, not quick cooking)
1. Combine butter, cocoa, sugar, and milk in a large saucepan.
2. Bring to a full boil, reduce heat and simmer for one minute stirring constantly.
3. Add vanilla and peanut butter mixing well.
4. Stir in oats.
5. Quickly drop onto waxed paper by the spoonful or desired amount.
6. Let cool and enjoy.
7. Do not under or over cook ingredients in saucepan. Once oats are stirred in drop onto wax paper immediately. I do not suggest in double batching this particular recipe.
- 2 cups white sugar
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3 cups rolled oats
- 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup flaked coconut
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Bring sugar, milk and butter to boil. Boil for 2 minutes and remove from heat.
- Stir in cocoa and vanilla. Stir in remaining ingredients to coat well.
- Drop onto waxed paper by the tablespoonfuls. Cool and enjoy!
Nikki is giving away 3 themed tote bags and there are 3 ways to enter to win!
- Copy/paste the book tour schedule onto your blog and leave a comment on Nikki’s blog to let her know that you posted on or before Saturday, July 11.
- Create your own blog post promoting What’s Wrong with Mud?
(You can contact Nikki for the Cover image and an interview to post if you want to)
- Stop by each blog on the Book Tour and leave a comment on each including Nikki’s blog (on or before Saturday, July 11), to let her know to enter you into the drawing.
If you enjoyed the book tour and would like a autographed copy of What’s Wrong with Mud? please email Nikki Shoemaker, firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Friday, July 10 - Diana Jenkins
Saturday, July 11 - Nikki Shoemaker wrapping up book tour and announcing winners.