I always thought that if you’re a mom, then you must be a creative person. That being a mini Martha Stewart is innate in all women and finally reveals itself when you become a mom. Baking cupcakes with perfect frosting designs, dazzling glittery crafts, and flawlessly sewn costumes are a part of the job. I thought that when I became a mom my fairy godmother would sprinkle star dust on me and I would summon the creative spirit of Martha; the Holy Grail of Creativity.
Um… no. That did not happen. In fact, the opposite seems to be my reality. I can barely cook, I cannot sew more than 2 inches of fabric without it looking like a zig zag and I am actually quite awful at crafts. I am not kidding. I suck at crafts. It looks pretty easy – draw a few lines, make a few cut-outs, paste them together, sprinkle on some glitter and BOOM! Masterpiece. My kid would look up to me in awe, my friends would ask me to help with their kids school projects and I’d be the LeBron James of crafts. A little exaggerated yes, but that is kind of what I had in mind. Instead, I scour Pinterest for the easiest looking crafts and pretend to know what I’m doing when I sit my son down.
I see many pictures of people doing crafts with their toddlers and they looks so jolly and neat. I am convinced that those pictures are lies. All lies. Maybe the parent finishes the crafts, then brings the kid in for a picture or maybe they have a team to help. Either way, there is nothing neat or gleeful about doing crafts with toddlers. My son touched everything that I asked him not to touch, he constantly knocked things off the table, he got upset with me that I put a puff ball on MY flower, and he was intent on using the glue – which ended up on my shirt and on his face. Needless to say, I was exhausted after we were done.
So I’ll tell you what I did learn about doing crafts with toddlers: stop being so uptight and follow my child’s creative process. This experience was harder on me because I kept trying to make it perfect, while he just wanted to have fun. So what if what he was messy or if his flower looked like Quasimodo? It is more important for him to be creative in his own way than for my standards to be met. Who knows, maybe one day he’ll teach me a thing or two about creativity.
What is your experience doing crafts with your kids? Leave a comment below!