My "Aha Moment"

Let me tell you about my little girl. She loves my junk drawer or any treasure she may find in my purse. She loves using scissors to cut and always finds ways to use Scotch tape to put things back together. In fact, she can blow through a three pack of Scotch tape like it's no one's business. She loves collecting and considers anything she finds to be a real prize. She loves projects.

She doesn't love toys. She's got toys, a whole room full of them. In fact, every Christmas and birthday we buy her new toys convinced that one of them is going to be her "ultimate" and that for sure she'll play with it. But no luck. For the longest time this bothered me. I wondered why sitting down and playing with dolls just didn't seem to interest her while other girls her age may be all about dolls. I worried about her imagination.

After my new craft room was complete, we did some room-swapping and moved Claire's play room into my old craft room. As part of the new set up, I decided I would try my hardest to come up with a good way to organize her art supplies. Here was my solution:a shelf system with individual, removable buckets, each one holding a different kind of art supply. The risk involved here as far as I would concerned : she would now have unlimited access to her art supplies. (oh the messy possibilities!)

Within minutes of getting up the morning after the new system was set up, Claire ran to her new play room and didn't come out for some time. I finally went in to check her, and there she was, paints open, brush in hand, working on a picture.My first reaction was to panic a little bit. All those open paints, and I wasn't there to supervise??? But after my initial heart attack, I realized she was completely happy, completely content, and completely under control.And in that moment, I realized that the fact that she prefers projects to toys is certainly nothing that I'm going to stress over. She knows what she likes, and does what makes her happy. And I certainly don't worry about her imagination. She creates some pretty awesome, creative projects that make us wonder what's going on in that little brain of hers!
when I walk in and catch her with paints, play dough and other messy supplies open, I'm not going to panic at the messes she might be making. When I go to use my Scotch tape and realize she's again depleted my supply, I'm not going to get frustrated. I'm going to continue to hang her school and other art projects in her "museum" because I'm proud of her work and want her to know that. I'm going to sit down and craft with her every time she'll allow me. (Because let's face it, this mumma would rather craft than play with dolls any day too!)

And next birthday or Christmas, there will for sure be a heavy emphasis on art and craft supplies rather than toys she's not going to play with anyway. I'm so proud of my little artist!

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