Water beads. Have you ever heard of them? They are something that I was recently introduced too. They start out as these small beads that are no bigger than the tip of a marker but when you add water to them they grow to the size of marbles. Okay so it is not an instant thing, it takes a few hours for them to get to their full size. As they dehydrate they get smaller and go back to their original size but you can give them more water and they will get big again. I love these little beads.
I have found several uses for the water beads; if you search water beads on Pinterest you will see the possibilities are endless. I have a Pinterest board that I have started about ways to use water beads, you can find it at pinterest.com/mshume. You can just play in them, paint with them, you can put them in with your plants, you could put them in a vase as a decoration, so many choices.
My children and I have used the water beads in our sandbox as an alternative to sand, we have added water beads to our soapy, bubbly water, and we have just played with them. My girls one day also decided it would be fun to put their feet in the water beads. I currently have some in a vase with flowers, they look really nice in the vase.
I have found them to be a nice sensory thing to use. I find them to be very calming and relaxing, just putting your hands in them to touch is somehow soothing. I had a giant bucket of them sitting on my counter and every time I walked past them, I had to put my hands in them. My husband did too. They are just very relaxing.