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Arts & Crafts 101

2010 February 23

I love arts and crafts. And I am not ashamed. I have been cross-stitching for as long as I can remember. I was a Girl Scout for much longer than is socially acceptable. And I love a good excuse to pull out paints, a glue gun and all the other messy stuff involved in crafts projects. My mom was (and is) always great at coming up with ways to make things at home rather than buying them. And she certainly nurtured my interest in crafts from day 1. Not surprisingly, then, I have been anxiously awaiting a time when Lilly and I could do some projects together. That time is upon us, my friends.

Just before Valentine’s Day, I was inspired by the dollar bins at Target, where I found Valentine’s Day themed scrapbook paper cutouts. Now, despite my crafty-ness (not craftiness), I am not a scrapbooker. I tried; it’s not my cup of tea. I like crafts because they provide instant gratification. Scrapbooking, in my experience, is a never-ending to-do list. I have enough of those. But I digress. When I saw the scrapbooking paper, I thought, “Well, those are cute and they would make good homemade Valentines.” And Lilly’s first craft project was born. I splurged the buck on the paper and another couple on a new glue stick and we were on our way.

That afternoon (and the following two afternoons) I pulled out my bargain buys from Target and enough construction paper for Lilly to make Valentines for her cousins, grandparents, and, of course, one for me and her dad. I laid a cheapy, plastic table cloth on the floor so Lilly could go crazy with her markers, stamps and paints. I punched out the perforated scrapbooking shapes and showed her how to use a glue stick. Sure, there were some hiccups. Like Lilly noticing that a glue stick is basically shaped like a giant chapstick, and using it accordingly. Repeatedly. And I learned the hard way that a stamp pad is the fastest way to get toddler handprints all over a room. But, ultimately, the results were beautiful. I had a blast doing crafts with my daughter for the first time. She had a blast doing something new. And the masterpieces! Well, see for yourself:

Besides opening a window to new and fun things to do with Lilly. This experience also added some excitement to my non-Lilly life. It’s been a while since I worked on some crafts on my own and god knows I’ve needed some distractions lately. So, I’m eager to get started on some projects I’ve been thinking about doing for a while, and I’ve found some new ones too. I’ll try to chronicle both my failures and successes here.

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