Dyeing Easter eggs is among my least favorite activities to do with the kids. From the lingering stench after hard-boiling the eggs to the colored drips all over the table, floor, and fingers, the process is more frustrating than enjoyable for me. Each year I somehow manage to hide my irritation and enthusiastically tackle my annual egg-dyeing duties. This year I even researched some new ideas to see if the process could be easier, more fun, or if we could get better results from our work. The answer–no.
Instead of the traditional dip-and-dye kits I have purchased in the past, I went for two new kits that looked intriguing. (I think both were Dudley’s kits.) One required the egg-dyer to place the egg in a baggie with a couple of drops of pre-mixed dye and mush it around until the egg was sufficiently covered. Then, the egg could be removed and set to dry or placed in another bag containing a different color dye before being sprinkled with glitter. This kit was a disaster. Eggs rolled everywhere as the kids tried to push the egg out of the bag and onto the drying station. Even worse, when they tried to move an egg from one bag to the other eggs plopped to the table resulting in cracked shells and egg-shaped dye spots all over the place.
The second kit included 6 different pre-mixed dyes squirted into a handy tray. Each color came with its own cute mini-paint roller tool for spreading the dye. The kids enjoyed rolling the dye onto the egg, until they had to turn the egg around to color the other side. It was hard for their small hands to hold the egg and maneuver the roller without dropping either, and there was no way to completely cover an egg without their fingers getting covered in dye. My 5-year-old enjoyed this kit, but the other two bailed midway through their first egg to the baggie kit.
Also, I read somewhere to wrap rubber bands around the eggs before applying the dye to make a cool pattern. Turns out it’s not so cool. It was nearly impossible to get the rubber bands to stay on the eggs before dyeing and even harder to apply the color to them. After the dye dried, we removed the rubber bands to find less-than-stellar results. If we had dipped them it would have been much easier, and maybe we would have had better results all around.
Though this year was a frustrating flop by my standards, the kids still had fun and that’s all that matters. Next year, I think I’ll try to dye the eggs naturally by using these great directions I found on BlogHer.com. The kids will get a kick out of using real vegetables, spices, and juices and observing the different reactions each produces. Hopefully I will, too.