This is my favorite time of year. It’s warm but not too hot. At 70 or 80 degrees, we can play outside any time of day. The pool is toasty enough for a late afternoon dip, the perfect segue to bath time. And the house is warm enough that I have to avoid turning on the oven, meaning our menu transitions to salads, sandwiches and grilled food. Oh, and I can wear my flip flops everywhere I go.
With that said, I’m always on the lookout for ways to spice up our growing outdoor play time. Finley’s teacher first recommended the following “bubble brew” recipe, which also appeared in the May 2012 issue of Big Backyard.:
1 cup dishwashing liquid (Dawn is highly recommended)
10 cups warm, distilled water
1/4 cup light corn syrup or liquid glycerin (purchase at the drugstore)
Mix all your ingredients in a large container. (I reuse an old bubble container I have). Word has it if you let this bubble brew sit for about a day, it works better.
My kids love using this mix in bubble guns and inexpensive bubble makers. You also can experiment blowing bubbles with all kinds of household objects, for example a drinking straw. Big Backyard recommends cutting off the top and bottom of a milk or orange juice carton and encouraging your child to guess what shape bubble the rectangular container will produce. The answer: bubbles are always round, since spheres have the smallest surface area.
You can create bubble art by adding food coloring to your bubbles. Blow them into the air and encourage your child to catch them on a blank sheet of paper.
With my apologies to my friends still facing snowy days, get out there and blow some bubbles.
20 thoughts on “Bubblemania”
Bubbles bubbles, toil and…FUN! Thanks for the reminder – I still have some solution in the garage! Check this out for more fun to create: http://www.geekparents.co.uk/how-to-make-bubble-solution-and-bubble-wands/
Ohhh, thanks. I was thinking of working some magic with pipe cleaners.
What fun! Gotta love bubbles! Our Science Center has (or at least had…) a huge bubble maker thingy and even as an adult, I love playing with it!
It’s to be 82 here today… 43 on Friday. Sigh. I should blow bubbles today! (Maybe on my balcony so not too many people think I’ve lost it…)
The Kids Museum we visited last year had a giant bubble maker thingy too. Kids LOVE it. I did see Steve Spangler Science had some directions for making one. Maybe you should try THAT on your balcony.
Well, it’s cold and rainy where I live (although we haven’t had rain all spring and really need it so I’m not complaining!) so not perfect bubble weather. But I love good bubbles as much as the next person, so thanks for the recipe. I have no doubt it will come in handy when the weather improves, and I’m sure my granddaughter will love them 🙂
I was thinking of you all when I posted. It’s not quite summery weather in your neck o the woods.
thanks. my girls will love this. they were creating large ice cream shapped bubbles in a bowl last night with a drinking straw.
Enjoy! We have been having lovely weather here.
You have some great ideas Kirsten thanks a lot! It’s a bit windy here yet for all that though.
Just think, you wouldn’t have to blow that hard.
HA HA HA HA! 😀
It’s still cool here and rainy. We’ll have to wait for it to warm up! Great post!
I know. I can’t believe how cold and wet it it out your way. I hope you get some sunshine soon.
Fun… Kirsten! Try this on your next warm night: http://www.ehow.com/how_4867716_make-bubbles-glow.html. It’s on our agenda to try out for the blog; I’ll let you know when that post is up! 🙂
Oooh, looks like fun. FYI. I am linking to your blog tomorrow when I review the Carson Microbrite microscope. Thanks for the tip!
I’m loving all these bubble links. I didn’t know you could use corn syrup as a substitute for glycerin. Good to know!
It is nice especially since I normally have corn syrup on hand, not glycerin.
I’m going to run the risk of sounding kooky here but for the sake of better bubbles, here you go…
The recipe above is good and has been the standard home-brew for decades now. Corn syrup is okay but know that it will attack bees and bugs more quickly than glycerin will.
A “Secret Ingredient” I highly recommend is KY-Jelly (replacing the glycerin/corn syrup). Store brand is fine and half the price. Be sure the ingredients list on the tube includes glycerin & cellulose.
Start with 2 or three tablespoons. Add more if you feel it would help. It will dissolve right into the water/detergent. And yes, let it sit overnight. And yes, if you have hard water in your area it is best to use distilled.
Why? The glycerin helps the soap film fight evaporation. The cellulose makes the film more elastic which means the bubbles will be able to withstand greater stress and will be more likely to divide rather than pop. The bubbles will be thicker and therefore more colorful.
A very humid day is best. High humidity slows evaporation. Bubbling after a rain shower will introduce all sorts of welcome surprises.
While pro-solutions get far more complicated, a few tablespoons of that slippery stuff (found in the unmentionables dept of most drug stores) offer big bang for your bucks.
If KY is too radical a step to take, starches will help some too.
Happy Bubble Days.
Of course I meant Corn Syrup will ATTRACT bees, not attack them… Ugh.
Thanks for the extra tips for best bubbles. This is a great recipe for those who don’t mind a “rated x” version.