Pretend Car Wash

Inspired by Emily’s recent request for a car wash toy, both of the girls were kept busy for a long time with this pretend car wash activity, and they had a lot of fun! To make up the cars, I pressed down on a sheet of inexpensive craft foam with car and truck shaped cookie cutters to make an outline, which I could then cut out easily using scissors. Then I set up a car wash tray for the girls to enjoy!

The girls took turns with this starting with Emily who would draw on the cars with washable markers to get them all “dirty”.

Then, it was time to wash them off in a small tub of baby shampoo, a small sponge, and water. Wash, wash, wash! The marker comes off quickly and easily!

Then, the cars were passed over to Clara to rinse off in a bowl with just water and a small sponge.

Ta-Da!!!! All clean!!!!

And then the process would start all over again!!

They had so much fun, and after awhile they switched rolls so that Clara would color and wash the cars, and Emily would rinse them off.

This kept them happily entertained for a good long while until their fingers got allย wrinkly!

Nothing like some good CLEAN fun!!


  1. Brilliant again! That would be fun with little paper doll shapes, too. They could decorate their dolls all up, and then wash them clean, to start again.

  2. Great idea. I love the idea of using paper doll shapes too!

    • I was surprised at how long they were engrossed in this activity. It just never seemed to get old! Ahhh… to be a kid again…..

  3. What a good idea!

  4. Dear Valerie,

    My (dirty) car is sitting in the driveway, with the alternator removed, and it will be a day or so before the alternator is finished being rebuilt.

    Just sayin’


    • You’re right. Now would be the perfect time to use the brake lights from your car for a craft project… thanks!!

  5. We are SOOOO gonna do this when we work on the letter “C” (for car)….and AGAIN when we work on “V” (for vehicle)!

  6. I think that they are ready for a real car wash! Great idea, by the way!

  7. Oh, that is such a brilliant idea! My boys will like this. The look on her face is so precious! Thank you so much for sharing your talents.

  8. Salaam and peace ya’ll. I love the fact that both Emily and Clara can get in on the action. It can be hard to find an activity for blended age groups.

    • It IS a challenge to find things both of them love to do. It was a proud mommy moment to see them play so nicely together for such a long time! ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. we’ve done the real car wash, which just turns into the spray each other with the hose wash.

    This might be a little less wet.

  10. I love this idea! Will definitely try this with my girls! I’m always on the lookout for ideas that keep them occupied and this one looks like it will do the trick. Thanks!

  11. Fun stuff! I love it when they can work together and trade jobs, too. (And some good “cause and effect” teaching!)

    • Thanks, Scott! I was so proud of how well they shared and took turns with this — for Clara especially, it can be so hard for a 2 yr old to learn these concepts! She did really well!

  12. Love this! Sammy loves to wash his cozy coupe so I bet this would be a hit as well!

  13. JDaniel4's Mom says

    I love this idea! I think I even have the foam.

  14. I love how engrossed they are. Cute project. We like to do “car” washes with their dirty bikes.

  15. roputsatup says

    Wow! what a nice work.This kid really talent and so smart . i love her.

  16. Simple, easy and so much fun. Looks like they might be ready to do the dishes.

  17. This is FABULOUS! This provided a good half hour of entertainment for my 4 and 2 year yesterday, and they were begging for it again today. Thanks!

  18. JDaniel4's Mom says

    This post has been selected one of my great posts of the week. Here is the link:

  19. I love, love, LOVE this idea! I just have to go pick up my craft foam from my MIL’s house and I’m DOING THIS for my son this week! I can just imagine his glee! Coloring, trucks, bubbles AND water! WHEW! I’ll let you know how it goes! ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. Thanks for the great idea! Here is my post about it!

  21. I did this today with my 7 yo and 2 yo. It was so easy and they LOVED it! THANKS!


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