Barefoot kids is what summer is about. There's nothing quite like the sensation of squishing and stomping feet in mud or wiggling toes in cold damp sand at the beach.
Here's another memorable sensation that will bring giggles and laughter when your child steps through paint to create a zany Father's Day card, gift and wrapping paper.
L With adult supervision, here's how to do this paint project:
Outdoors, spread several sheets of newspaper on the ground. Pour liquid non-toxic and washable tempera-style paint in a pie plate. You may wish to have several plates for different colors.
Place a long piece of butcher paper -- or use recycled plain paper bags cut open and spread flat -- next to the plate. At the opposite end of the paper, set a big water-filled bucket.
Wipe off your child's feet. Then hold your child's hand as he/she steps into a pie plate one foot at a time. Guide your child as he/she makes footprints across the paper. Re-apply paint to the feet if necessary. When the printing is done, your child can step into the bucket to wash off the paint. Let the prints dry.
Cut up the printed paper and:
* Make a card with a greeting such as "Walking in Dad's Footsteps. Happy Father's Day!"
* Mount several steps with matting and a frame. Be sure to write your child's age and the date on the paper.
* Use leftover paper for wrapping paper. Cut out one of the footprints and use as a gift tag for the package.
To share your comments or ideas for family projects, write Donna Erickson, Features Department, The Sun, Baltimore 21278.