Wednesday 30 January 2013

Bring on the minuses!

Tempting fate with green water-filled
balloon over my head. Mopping up.
We moved to Canada in April of 2011. I was dreading the winter but Toronto gave us a mild one. As this current winter started and progressed, I had been quietly thankful for each day that went by where the temperature was above -10C or so. I'd check the forecast and then check it a few more times to see if it had changed when any temperatures below zero were predicted.

The day I decided to do this project, it was a balmy 13C (only days after my personal record low temperature of -21C which we survived with minimal digit loss).
Careful placement; in the bowl, ready for placement;
striking a pose to show the arrangement off
(so mild no coat was needed!).

The forecast, as I formulated my plan, was predicting a high of -2C for the next day. I was pleased. I checked later and it said a high of 8C. I was dismayed but committed to the project so we went ahead anyway. (I also checked another forecast which still said a high of -2C - hurrah!)

That was quite an introduction without getting to the point, wasn't it? Well, the plan was to make these icy colourful marbles.

I was genuinely excited about doing these and was disappointed when Z1 and Z2 were busying themselves in the garden. I told them when they had finished playing, we'd do the water balloons. Z1 told me "We are not playing, we are taking care of the worms." and that I could do it myself.  So I did, I started by myself with a green one and went to take it outside to show the Zeds to see if they'd be interested now that there was something to look at. (I had a minor panic when Z2 could not be located - he'd wandered off behind the shed and was not responding to being called.) He was thrilled to see a balloon and happily followed me to the front to help me put it in the grass. Hurrah. Z1 soon followed when she saw that her brother was interested so we retreated to the kitchen to prepare a few more.

Here's the how to. I saw this on Pinterest and didn't read any instructions before starting. The one I did on my own was a good practice: I filled the balloon with water by stretching it over the spout and, when I removed it, water spurted out everywhere, forced out by the balloon contracting back to its deflated size, I suppose. I was not expecting that. Lesson learned.

I had a dropper to drop food colouring into the balloons before filling so the Zeds could help with that by squeezing the dropper. After that, they were guardians of the balloons as I filled the next one. We had an incident where I tied a knot too hastily and put the balloon into the bowl where it promptly splooshed its (thankfully not very brightly coloured) contents onto Z1's coat and the floor. Paper towels were promptly employed. We did a few greens and a few reds. I only had a small bit of blue food dye left which we divided between an attempt at a purple one (mixing red and blue) and a just-blue one. It may be rather pale. I didn't fill them as large as they look in the Pinterest picture as I was fearful of balloon breakage and also thought that it would be good that the smaller ones would freeze more quickly.

They are outside as I type. Current outside temperature is 12C (at 9pm) though it is predicted to be -3C by 8am which is around when we will be leaving the house. I cannot wait to poke them but I suspect the big reveal (cutting the balloons off) will be Friday or possibly even Saturday. There is also snow forecast so we might have to dig them out to see them. Bring on the minuses!


  1. am excited to see the results really nearly did this last week when we were in the minuses but never quite got round to it....hope it gets cold for you soon! Ax