I got wet. He squinted and blinked while looking up at the drops falling from the sky. We hopped in puddles and ran in and out of the awning of our entryway. After a few short moments, we were both laughing and feeling a million times better. When we'd had enough (Ok, it was me who'd had enough...) we came back inside and I decided to let Kz get a bit messier.
Still uninspired by my tired materials, I grabbed some flour and plopped it on his high chair tray. He was curious and asked to sit in the chair. His hands hadn't been dried so well, and the flour began to stick. I got more water and poured it onto the tray, helping some of the newly formed dough into balls. When the dough got too sticky, I simply added more flour and helped Kz pull the bulk of it off his hands.
After a while, I gave him a spoon to use as a tool. He scooped, pushed, mashed and made marks on the flour tray.
Inevitably, some fell on the floor. But it was easy to clean with a moist paper towel.
Kz enjoyed the messy play and more importantly, he was whine-free for hours. Don't have the energy to make an elaborate sensory bin for your child? Just work with what you have. Your kids will love it!