Another clever idea found on Pinterest, made slightly easier by yours truly. Wacky Sacks made by Somewhat Simple are already quick and easy to accomplish following her instructions.
But, for those of us who are uncoordinated and/or have no hand strength, I have an alternate method for filling the balloon. By the way, this would work for filling a balloon with almost anything.
Empty plastic water bottle
Pencil with an eraser on one end
Play dough (I used one 4oz container per balloon)
The first step is to cut off the top part of the water bottle and unscrew the cap. Then stretch the balloon mouth over the mouth of the bottle.
I set the bottle on the top of an empty play dough container for balance.
Break off small-ish pieces of clay, roll and drop into the opening. You can do larger pieces rolled into snake shapes to start with, but as the balloon starts to fill, start making the pieces smaller. Large pieces will get stuck in the neck. Use the eraser end of the pencil to poke the clay down if it gets stuck in the neck of the balloon.
Every so often, I picked up the bottle and squeezed the clay together and pressed it as far toward the bottom of the balloon as possible. Near the end I pushed my thumb down on it to make a shallow well. This helped make room for the clay balls to roll into.
After all the clay was in, I squeezed out any lingering air and tied it off. A little permanent marker, and the little guys just came alive. From start to finish, it took me about half an hour to make two. The cost of supplies? 25 cents per container of clay and pennies for the balloons.
My dear Miss Audrey has dubbed these Squooshy-whooshies. Works for me. ;)