The UN-crafty Mom

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My idea of craft time = free play with glitter glue. Yikes!

A mom like me can start to feel pretty inadequate if she spends much time at all browsing homeschool mom blogs. Crafty moms are flooding Pinterest with their latest creations for little ones’ birthday parties and posting tutorials on how to make butterflies and rainbows out of toilet paper rolls, pipe cleaners, and glitter. Lovely as they are, I am learning to be okay with the reality that I am not that mom. My kids’ birthday parties are decorated with Dollar Tree streamers and pink plates with a few balloons scattered around. And the one Christmas ‘craft’ I did with the girls was decorating sugar cookies.

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I have a degree in Elementary Education. Fortunately my first job was teaching fifth grade so I didn’t feel too much pressure to be overly crafty, but I definitely had the lamest bulletin boards around. Some teachers get all giddy when it’s time to design and decorate their classroom. Me, not so much. I strongly disliked that part of teaching. Even as a student in school I was much happier to do a worksheet, read a book, write a paper, or work on a group project than if I had to cut and paste anything. Blech.

Fast forward to my life as a mother now. I have three little girls. Perfect little subjects for oodles of crafts, right? So, we’ve got the play-doh, stickers, felt, beads, glitter, construction paper, pipe cleaners, and paints. Heck, I even have a glue gun. Our daily routine rarely involves the use of any of the aforementioned supplies. Once in a while I get a burst of inspiration and we might attempt a craft of sorts, but it’s not the norm. And that’s okay.

Sometimes when I start to compare myself to the crafty moms I see all over the blogosphere, the Lord will remind me that he made me unique. I should not hold myself up to another mom for comparison. Inspiration, perhaps, but not as a measuring stick. I may not be artsy, but I love to get my hands dirty in the garden. I enjoy cooking. I love to read and learn and ask questions and solve problems and talk about life and politics and science and God and history and food and sports. Now, whenever I start to worry that my girls are missing out on something by not having craft time every day, I just look at all the things I CAN  teach them. And I have a feeling that if I am teaching out of a passion inside me then they will learn far more than if I am trying to be someone I’m not.

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My oldest two girls have both learned the alphabet by 18 months and all the letter sounds well before age two, so do I really need to do a letter of the week activity every day with noodles or shaving cream in a ziploc bag? My oldest started reading short words at 3.5 years old and can write many words completely on her own. Clearly God has enabled her to learn even *despite* my lack of craftiness. When he made me the mother of our girls, he knew what he was doing. My strengths are what they are for a reason, and the same is true for my weaknesses.

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If you are a crafty mom, bless your heart. 🙂 Your children will benefit from that. After all, God made you the mother of the child(ren) you have for a reason! Your talents, quirks, temperaments, and passions are all a part of the beauty of God’s plan for your family. But if you are like me, a bit deficient in the craft department, don’t look at someone else’s gifts with envy and fail to see the *gifts* that lie within you and can be used to bless others, especially your children! After all, parents have been their children’s main educators for thousands of years – and they did it without Pinterest, blogs, JoAnn Fabrics, or Hobby Lobby. You can too.
-Brit
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6 thoughts on “The UN-crafty Mom

  1. You are not alone! 🙂 Currently, our “craft” time, is giving the children a coloring book and crayons. Sometimes we also have those foam stickers in the house and I let them get creative with those also. I want to do more crafty type things, but with having a baby 3 1/2 months ago, I am pretty busy. Maybe a bit later when the baby is older and isn’t so demanding.

    • Yes! Coloring books and crayons are art, right?

      And maybe when my girls are older we’ll be more adventurous in the craft department, but right now it is more work/stress than it’s worth with 3 little ones.

    • Why thank you. I am certainly trying to find the balance of being myself as a mom and also doing things for/with my kids that are more of a stretch for me. Well, who am I kidding? As moms, every day we do things that stretch us, don’t we? Grace for all!

  2. (Ooops, I think I used the wrong name on my account. So I copied my comment and am trying this again! Please delete the first one, thanks!!) Oh I could just seriously reach out and hug you right now because this is me!!!! I am not a crafter and over the years of teaching Sunday School and Awana I have lived in fear for those moments when the Children’s Ministry Director or Awana Commander says “I have an idea of a theme and I’d like your class and all the other classes to make this craft item to go with it…..”

    What’s worse is when they ask me to come up with something. Seriously? Me? Come UP with something? Fortunately I teach a women’s class now so I don’t have to do a craft with them, lol! But I still work in Awana.

    When the kids were little and we were homeschooling my “crafts” were simple. Once they drew pictures of pilgrims and Indians and we glued them to Popsicle sticks and put on a puppet show for Thanksgiving.

    Mostly, I just provided the empty t.p. rolls, pipe cleaners, wiggly eyes, pom poms, paint, glue and whatever else and just let them draw, paint or create on their own. That would entertain them and their friends for a couple of hours and the supplies were fairly cheap! Thank you for linking up to Making Your Home Sing Monday today!

    • Thanks for commenting! Love to hear from those who understand my plight. 😉

      And I love the fact that you have successfully homeschooled young children without being overly ‘crafty’! I just finished teaching a 12 week stint of Sunday School for 5th-6th grade and I skipped the crafts every week. Yep. I did. We used that time to make a giant banner that each child wrote 3 gratitudes on each week. I think they enjoyed it and learned something as well!

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