Most of my kids crafts are pre-planned events that involve scouring the inter-webs for cute ideas, trips to the store to buy supplies, followed by me hovering over my kids “helping” them make their craft.
I want it to look perfect, just like the Pinterest-worthy pictures I find online. Can you say “control freak”? Today started out much the same as every other craft activity I’ve planned. I bought the supplies, and I had the perfect idea in my head. The kids were so excited to get started, but I had a few things on my to-do list before I could sit down to “help” them with their craft. The endless nagging me to hurry up was getting on my nerves, so I quickly set up the supplies I had bought and walked away.
I walked away!!!
I left my 4 and 6 year old alone with scissors *gasp*, glue, pompoms and googly eyes, and I went to put the baby for a nap.
This might seem like no big deal to you, but my OCD tendencies and Type ‘A’ personality have turned me into the mom who always has to have everything just so, with a well laid out plan in every situation. I could never just leave the kids to make a huge mess and ruin my plans for the perfect craft. Today was different. For whatever reason, I decided to put aside my plans and give the kids free reign to dig into their own creativity.
What happens when we give our kids the opportunity to be creative?
When I returned from putting the baby down, what I saw made my heart simultaneously jump for joy and sink to the bottom of my gut. The shrieks of joy exclaiming “look what I made!” made me grin from ear to ear! While the realization sank in that most of our craft times end in cries of frustration saying “I can’t do it!” or “mine doesn’t look like that!” 🙁
My heart was broken.
My need for everything to be perfect was stealing the joy of creating something uniquely their own. I’ve always had a passion for art, and I understand the beauty in creating something uniquely you, yet I wasn’t allowing my children to practice their God-given gifts and talents. I still believe that there are benefits to following directions and making something step by step, however, if we don’t leave room for creativity then we are missing the point.
I wasn’t expecting to learn a lesson from today’s craft session. Sometimes you need a little reality check! I’m so glad that I just walked away and let art happen. 🙂
Here’s a peak at what they made all by themselves
They’re pretty cute if you ask me!
I hope this inspires you to let your kids be their own artists!