My kids love to do "art projects." This always seems to involve lots of cutting, glueing, coloring, and mess! One thing that Haley REALLY loves is glitter. Give her a bottle of glue and a container of glitter and she is a happy girl.
I am usually not so happy, because glitter is just so messy! It gets everywhere and it's hard to clean up. Getting it cleaned off tables, floors, and children is a chore. Plus I always worry that Brekken or the cats will get into the glitter and eat it... and that can't be good for them.
So on Sunday, I was doing an art project with the kids and Haley wanted to glitter. I didn't have any glitter, but I suddenly had a bright idea. I had a several containers of colored sugar - the kind you use to decorate cupcakes and cookies. Since I rarely actually make cupcakes or cookies, the sugar just sits unused in my cupboard for years. So I tried using it in place of glitter and it works great!
It's brightly colored, it shines, it sticks well in the glue. It sticks better than glitter actually. And when it was time to clean up, that was SO much easier. A damp cloth on the table and the kids, a broom and dustpan for the floor and it was all taken care of. It didn't take 5 or 6 passes to get all the stray pieces the way it does when I'm cleaning up glitter. And if a little did escape me and Brekken gets into it later, well, it's just a little bit of sugar!
Now, I haven't done a cost comparison, so I guess I don't know if it costs a lot more to get colored sugar than to buy glitter. But the advantages above are enough for me to keep using the sugar version for a while. Plus, I can make my own colored sugar if I don't want to buy the decorating stuff. A cup of sugar and a couple of drops of food coloring = colored sugar!
So that's what works for me. Head over to We Are That Family for more WFMW ideas!