I love my daughter. I think her creativity is fascinating. She can entertain herself for hours with a box of crayons, tape, yarn, and a stack of paper. The disadvantage of her creativity is that my printer paper seems to disappear at an alarming rate and she never seems to know where she got her newest stack of crisp white paper.
She brings home every craft imaginable from school. Sometimes, I look in her backpack and am dumbfounded. What am I supposed to do with 10 paper bracelets…again?
The challenge I find in all of this craftiness is how to embrace her creative projects and allow a mile-long paper trail to infiltrate my home on a daily basis. I inspect each project with the look of love and she questions me as to what I love best. I smile and tell her that it is wonderful. When my sweet little blond goes to bed, I take the daily pile of projects and lay them ever so delicately at the bottom of the trash can. Then I find something to lay gently over the top so that her projects are respectfully unseen to the watchful eye.
Lincoln is my forever accountability partner in this endeavor. “Jennifer! I think mom threw out your papers!” I run to shush my talkative fellow, reminding him that sometimes we all need a clean slate and a fresh perspective in the morning. *I also need a clean counter. (It is one of my “things.”)
Every morning, Jennifer wakes up with a renewed interest in crafting and never asks about yesterday’s collection of artwork.
Last night I was outside doing some yard-work with my mom and Jennifer was inside crafting. She found some seriously ugly yarn and she was going to town. My thought was, “I love that she can keep herself busy.” until I discovered that she was busy making something for me.
“Mom! I made you a necklace!” She then hands me this creative tape, yarn, and paper display and exclaims, “Can you wear it all day tomorrow?”
I take the ever so special “love piece” and hold it close. I thank her for making me something special and she went back to crafting. When Philip got home, I showed him my necklace. He asked what it was. I told him it was my necklace. He asked if I was going to wear it? I told him, “No.”
“Because it is ugly.”
Seriously people...I know you are thinking I am simply horrible, but I am not. I put it on, even took a picture, but I am not going to wear it out of the house…and she will be just fine. She will craft again tomorrow and maybe it will be pretty and maybe it won’t. I am gifting her with a skill…it is called taste.
I am laughing as I type this because I can’t believe I am telling you this. I have gone to my friend’s house for coffee before and she is THAT mom. I have no problems admitting that she is so much better than me. Her head is covered with multi-colored bows and little ponytails all over her head. She also has on the necklace that I have seen around her neck a few times and it is ugly. Yes, it is made with love (and macaroni) and it is ugly. I congratulate her for being awesome, often chuckling that her hair looks horrible, and occasionally thinking to myself that she will have a few extra jewels in her crown in heaven.
I am vain.
No one does my hair, but me.
No one puts on my make-up, but me.
I pick out my clothes.
And if my creative daughter, whom I love completely, wants me to wear my orange shoes with my green top, the answer is, “No.” Not because I want to squash her creativity, but because I want her to learn that not everything goes. Not everything looks awesome. Not everything matches AND you always have to brush your hair before you leave the house.
So this morning when I came downstairs, I realized that I forgot to lay the necklace to rest. She asked me to put it on, I did. I thanked her again for making it for me and then I took it off. She asked me if I was going to wear it. I told her, “No. It doesn't match." She told me that was fine and that she would make me one to match my top later.
And that is how it is done here.
If it doesn’t match or look cute or work with what I want to do that day…I am not wearing it. That doesn’t make me selfish, just opinionated…and in my opinion, that is totally okay.
I am a girl passionately in love with Jesus, my husband, and my children. I am forever learning how to live a life completely undone for my God. This blog is about my journey and a few funny stories in between.