F is for Foam Shapes

This post is not for the faint hearted! It’s not even really the best how to post.  Pinterest perfect it is not.  It’s an experience, one that makes me think why do I even bother.  Foam shapes, no, no, no.

This reminds me a bit of the time I tried to make edible paint when the Robot was younger.  It was a highly amusing car crash of abandoned mess and puke.  Thankfully foam shapes haven’t given us sick but you could say I turned a little bit grey in the process.

F is for Foam shapes

At Christmas the Robot got a few craft items in his stocking, part of this was some foam letters for printing with. If I was a bit more on the ball I’d have squirreled them away until after Christmas to use.

What happened was some unintended play, that required me to step back and let it happen. Do not get angry.  Christmas morning was spent using them as building blocks, this I could handle.  It was when they got ripped up into tiny pieces that made me cry a bit. Rendering them no use to anyone.  The carpet covered in foam bits by 10am. Joy Noel.

I managed to save a few and put them away until a craft session. My bubble a bit burst because there wasn’t the whole alphabet!  The Robot enjoys the alphabet.

a close up of foam shapes with some paint

With no before picture, the alphabet shapes came out during a sticking session.  He wanted to use the PVA as white paint and paint them.  Hmmmm glue and foam shapes. Nope, forcing me to show the way I added paint to his mixing plate so we could attempt to use the foam shapes as stamps.

The foam shapes with glue

This ended in red glue which got painted up his arms, on his face, everywhere.  Mantra being said, he’s  having fun, he’s exploring, he’s having fun…

the robot painting his arm red

As you can see we did some letters but let’s be honest, it was me. Trying to show him but with no interest to use them how intended.  It was chaos. He loved it.  I must love it too. Embrace the mess.

Foam Shapes take two

During the red session the paint tray broke. It had been well used and probably wasn’t designed for what we were using it for! While on eBay one middle of the night with baby CABS (the best times to purchase stuff on an impulse) I ordered new paint trays. Some new animal foam shapes jumped into the basket. Fun to try again!

clean new foam shapes and new flower paint trays

This time round I did a nice set up. An Invitation to Play! I put the mat out on the floor, paper, trays, all those lovely colourful foam shapes.  What did he ask for?  A green paint brush.

Ok kid have the green paint brush.  Again I did a bit of showing him the foam shapes and how to use them. A crab got ripped up in the process. It was the claws.  He just loves the paint brush.

All the paint strokes and no foam shape use

At this point I abandoned my camera. It was a tad distracting and I needed to have all hands on deck to deal with the next level of chaos.

Hand painting. I’m used to this now he likes to make the hand prints. I helped him paint his hand and print.  We’d not even lasted 10 minutes at this point, he wanted to go off and play with cars…

Feet painting I shouted. I should’ve known better.   Off came the socks. It was hilarious, he was so ticklish but really wanted it, I took my time torturing him.  Then let him stand on the paper.

After 3 attempts he’d had enough but now he had paint on his feet and the play mat only extends so far. Saying the words, “stay on the mat so you don’t get paint on the carpet”, became a challenge.

Running on to the carpet, I chased him with wipes and got his feet clean. Not giving in to fun though while I started tidying the paint away he came back to stand on all his paintings, thick painting. Running back to the carpet, hilarious mate.

It’s fruitless to get angry and shout at him, tempting, but wouldn’t solve anything. I very quickly tried to remove any evidence of fresh paint, dumping stuff in the kitchen, wiping the mat down. Then tackling the newly red foot prints on the carpet. Then his feet.

Done for another session. I put the kettle on for a well deserved cup of tea.  Just as I sat down baby CABS woke up from her nap.  No rest there then…

Do you have this amount of fun while painting? It’s gotta get easier right?

We used his hands to make cards for our Mums on Mothering Sunday, beautiful hey:

pictures of craft vase cards with robots hand prints as flowers - glitter everywhere!!


  1. Oh that’s brilliant! I love that you get the paints out and more that you allowed him to explore; both so important at this age. There’s quite a bit of new study in the fact that young children need sensory experiences with both hands and feet so this is perfect….many parents shy away from messy stuff….perhaps just have a washing up bowl full of soapy bubbles to dunk feet into next time! Lovely ❤️ #familyfun
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  2. Wow, I don’t know how you do it, you’re amazing. I wish I could be more relaxed about it but just the thought of all that paint getting everywhere and I start panicking. We did recently buy L some new paints that don’t spill and she’s actually really good at using them and only getting paint on her hands and clothes which is an easy clean up. I love the cards you made

  3. Pingback: Vehicle Painting - TwoTinyHands.co.uk

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