When it comes to children’s birthday parties and choosing favors can become stressful for moms reaching for that “perfect party”. This year I kept it simple and made them! Lily’s buddies went home with tiny mason jars filled with squishy, slimy homemade gak (or aka flubber).
For Lily’s first birthday I slaved away making sand buckets filled with a variety of toys and candy…yes cotton candy!!???? Some of the kids weren’t even one yet!!! The sand bucket alone would and should have been enough…but it was my baby’s first and I went overboard…way over.
I had purchased the 4 oz mini mason jars from Walmart with the initial intent to serve individual portions of homemade macaroni & cheese. Once I finalized the menu without the need for the classic cheesy noodle side dish I figured I would utilize them for the favors somehow. That’s when I found a pin that lead me to the adorable pink glitter gak given away at a party at Mama Papa Bubba.
When I made the gak I left the glitter and the pink color out since 95% of Lily’s buddies are boys. Dying it red and blue matched the BBQ theme this year and are unisex. I used some of the extra fabric from the DIY garland I created (post coming soon!) to make toppers for the jars. I found a glass bowl that was bigger that the width of the mason jars. I wish I actually made the circles a little bigger because when I screwed the lid over the fabric not enough stuck around the entire jar (that’s just my picky opinion!).
Containers (Walmart sells the 4 oz. mason jars in a 12 pack for $12.97)
Borax, 1 teaspoon (found at most stores near laundry detergent)
Elmer’s Glue 7.625 oz. bottle
Note: I made 14 favors and I used 2 large (7.625 oz.) and 1 regular ( 4 oz.) bottle of Elmer’s glue. I made three batches with each individual bottle of glue. For measurement purposes with the 4 oz. bottle of glue, follow the same directions but use ½ teaspoon of Borax mixed with ¼ cup warm water.
Note: For all the moms out there that are worried about Borax being toxic…don’t worry. Borax has the same safety warning as salt and baking soda!
1. In a mixing bowl pour the glue out and fill the empty bottles with warm water.
2. Give the bottles a good shake and then pour the water into the bowl. Mix the glue and water (it will be a watery mixture).
3. If you want the gak to be a specific color drop in the food coloring into the glue mixture. FYI to get the color red you have to put a LOT in otherwise it will turn pink!
5. Pour the Borax mixture into the glue and start to stir. It will notice a change instantly.
6. After you mix it with a spoon, finish with your hands to soak up the remaining liquid and finish creating the gak. The gak can easily be cut/ripped into smaller portions to fit the mason jars.
Gak is a lot of fun for kids to play with, just like playdough. Gak molds quicker to containers than dough and if you place it in a strainer the gak will eventually start to drain through it creating strings of slime! And if you have an older kid just pushing the gak into a container creates funny noises (aka fart sounds!). So if your looking for a cheap DIY party favor for toddlers try this one. Plus it’s a great alternative to candy!