|me and my mommy
She planned elaborate birthday parties, and when I was old enough, I joined in the planning. As soon as Christmas was packed away, we would spend the next three months inventing games like Garfield Bingo made from copies of comics saved from the paper, and crafting individual favors like personalized autograph books for my celebrity themed birthday party. We would shop together at discount stores for the perfect assortment of prizes to be awarded for all of our games.
|one of those embarrassing photos
|decorating my own cake at 38 years old
So, you see, even to this day, I appreciate the magic that my mom has always brought to my life.
I understand that kids need free time to use their own imaginations, to explore and be creative, but they also need to feel special and loved, and to know that their parents will go to special efforts just for them. There is a lot of pressure on women to have it all—to create magic childhoods, gourmet clean food meals, keep a perfectly naturally cleaned and organized house, all while maintaining a gratifying career outside the household. While I might appear to have the crafty/artsy/picture perfect birthday party side of things under control from what you see on this blog, let me just tell you, that I do not excel in all of these areas. For way too long, dinners around here were frozen chicken and frozen sweet potato fries on a cookie sheet with frozen broccoli in the microwave. Clean laundry sits in baskets for days, and I am the queen of Clorox wipes.
I am a designer, an artist and a crafter, and I enjoy creating magic for my son using my skill set hoping to instill an appreciation for these things in him—something we can enjoy together for years to come. Magic can come from a lot of places. A mom who is an excellent chef can create shared cooking experiences. A mom who is an athlete can shoot hoops or kick the soccer ball with her kids. All of these things are magical.
I share these magical moments here because I enjoy searching resources just like this one to get new ideas, and I imagine there are people out there like me who feel the same way. I want other moms to be inspired and to know it doesn't have to be difficult to create a little crafty magic, and it doesn't have to be perfect. Do I have a secret hope that my efforts will be considered worthy of a pin? Would I love to be able to make a business out of my artsy/crafty designerness someday? Sure. Is this my main motivation for creating magic for Leo? Not in the least, or I would be a heck of a lot more up to date with sharing what we've been up to than I am.
So, here's to Mommy Magic. Because, isn't seeing a gleeful smile as the result of our efforts one of the best gifts of parenthood after all?