Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Freeform Festive Art Explorations - A Way to Reset a Rough Day

I had a hard day with my kids today. We've spent the past couple weeks taking turns passing around a bad stomach virus, the kids have been having a number of sleep regressions, and just general the responsibilities of managing a household during the holidays all ended up piling together and made for a very trying Tuesday. I lost my temper. Multiple times. Both kids went down for naps with tears, and I dropped a few of my own on the couch while I caught my breath. And then I decided, you know what? I'm the only one here who really has the power to turn this day around.

So I set the scene for a calm and pleasant afternoon to greet the kids when they got up from their naps (hopefully) rested and cheerier. I tidied up the kitchen - 'cause Mama doesn't function well in chaos, set a pot of good smelling things to simmer on the stove, turned on some Christmas music, put out some snacks, and then went hunting in my craft room.

My only direction in mind for this afternoon activity was "festive." I gathered some baskets, raided the gift wrap center, then finished up with a few supplies from Meg's craft shelves. (Please forgive the poor lighting. It's that time of year where the days are shorter, nights are cooler, and lighting is artificial.)

The spread.

Papers - dollar store holiday cards that have been languishing in my closet for years, pages from a ruined holiday picture book, construction paper halves, toy catalogue

gift bows and ribbons

white glue, glitter glues, and scissors

"Strings 'n Things" bin - bits of yarn, ribbon, elastic, etc.

As with most art explorations in this house, Meg decided to take things her own direction when she awoke. She pulled out a number of papers and asked to use my scrapbooking paper cutter. I pulled it out, reminded her which part was sharp and how to use it safely, and she went to town, cutting everything in her path into strips. She even attempted cutting one of the gift bows and found out on her own what was and wasn't possible to cut with the tool.

Her first try.

So proud!

I'd like to say this turned the whole day around and there were no more tears and tantrums and sharp words. But that isn't true. We're all human and this has been an exhausting and trying time. But those 3 happy, giggly, singing, creating, wonderful hours were enough to get us through the rest of the day. And tomorrow we'll all try to do better.



Katie said...

We all have those kinds of days! When I have one, I just tell myself to get some rest and do better the next day.

Hey Mommy, Chocolate Milk said...

New follower. I found you through Train Up a Child's Link-Up. Hope you will hop over and follow back.
Glad to meet you!

the Monko said...

oh i love to read posts about real days rather than perfect craft days. So glad you got 3 good hours. I'm pinning this to the sunday parenting party pinboard