Kids Crafting. Wanton Destruction. It’s a Fine Line
So, the parenting magazines and playground mommies finally guilted you into setting up a craft area for your kids. Great!!! Now you’re wondering which of the 5 billion different items in the craft aisle at your local discount store to hoard and bring home. No worries! I’ve made a list to guide you. Breathe slowly. You can do this. Probably.
- Crayons – these little gems are supposed to be for coloring pictures on paper. But, my kids use these to make free form wick-less candles in the backseat of our van. (Note: nothing will remove these creations from the upholstery except the fabric of a new boss’ suit when she unknowingly sits on them)
- Pencils – these age-old standbys can produce delicate drawings with shading and texture. But, around my house they are more commonly used to produce trips to the emergency room to check for scratched corneas, particularly if being “shared” with siblings.
- Plastic Safety Scissors – these are a miracle tool in the hands of a child. Although any adult would be hard pressed to get these to cut through tissue paper, any 2 year old can easily use plastic safety scissors to cut through the thick leather on daddy’s recliner to see why it’s so puffy, or to cut eye holes to peek out of through the living room drapes. My kids have also given surprise hair make overs to their dad, their siblings, and the dog, all while the victim…uh…lucky recipient slept.
- Glue sticks – these should be renamed “Don’t You Wish We Had Some Glue” sticks because no matter how many you own, they will all dematerialize the second you work on a project after the stores close. Well, not all of them. You can always find that one useless, shriveled up, rock-hard one. When glue sticks are around my kids prefer to use them to create 3-D drawings on the bathroom mirror, as belly button filler, or as a lip balm that keeps on giving.
- Permanent Markers – these seem like a great idea, just like a lot of other terrible ideas seemed like a great idea. Like rice cakes. And home bikini waxing. Seems like we could use permanent markers to label items such as backpacks, clothing, and lunch boxes. But, no such luck. No permanent marker worth its salt is findable when there is anything that is supposed to be labeled permanently anywhere in the vicinity. These only turn up in the hands of children, and only when they have selected a sibling, wall, pet, or piece of furniture to label. My kids particularly love to use them to make facial tattoos, especially right before grandma is due to arrive. (Note: permanent marker can only be removed easily when doing so will result in the permanent loss of an expensive item.)
- Washable “School Glue” – Note the wording on the label carefully. It says “Washable.” It does not say “Will wash out of stuff it’s not supposed to be on.” Nope. Good luck with that! My kids like to use “School Glue” to make books into solid blocks, to create clothes that stand on their own (this is just one of the techniques they use to create that!), and to secure drawers permanently shut. No one will admit it, but I know someone used it to make the dog’s ears stiff last Christmas. He looked like he could fly!
- Transparent Tape – No matter how many rolls of this you buy, you will never be able to find one during an actual tape-necessitating situation. Make peace with that now. When your kids need it to make their faces scary to frighten siblings or pets, or to wrap thick layers around Barbies to produce Barbie Mummies, or to attach artwork to the new HDTV screen in the family room they will have no trouble finding multiple rolls around the house, even if you have never owned any. My kids have also been known to use it to wax daddy’s legs while he naps.
These items are all available at discount and craft stores. While you’re out buying them be sure to stock up on bandages and gauze, and to get the route to the nearest emergency room, as well. Might be a good idea to double check your home insurance policy,too.
Laugh Out Loud!
What is your kids’ favorite tool of destruction … I mean crafting medium? Drop me a comment – I look forward to hearing about it.