When my children were four and two years old, I decided to create a bonding experience by making homemade Christmas ornaments and cookies.
I don’t know what made me do it. Guilt for buying a pricey craft book? Was I going for a super Mom award? Or had I just lost my mind from hundreds of hours of watching Sponge Bob and My Little Pony? I’ll never know.
The book showed happy children sitting nicely making Christmas decorations. All I needed was plastic balls, glue and glitter. I’d show the kids how to make designs with the glue and dip the ball in glitter. Toddlers, glue and glitter, what could go wrong?
I poured five colors of glitter into five bowls, and showed them how to gently squeeze the glue bottle. My daughter immediately squirted an arc of glue up and over the tables onto my angel centerpiece. Her brother laughed, so she did it twice more before I could hit her with the angel and get the glue.
We began again and she did fine except for waiting for the glue to dry before adding more glue and dipping the ball again. Her ornaments turned into dripping glittery messes, which triggered a crying jag. While I was comforting her, her rotten brother upended the bowls and was mixing all the colors together which triggered a new crying jag from the princess. Fortunately, I had been baking cookies to decorate, so I left to get that activity set up when I heard my son crying. I dropped everything to check on him. The princess exacted her revenge by covering his head with glue and packing handfuls of glitter into his hair.
All moms have a moment when they debate whether to stop and clean up a mess or just continue until all the damage is done. I opted for the latter.
So now we were going to spread icing on cookies and decorate them with mini M&Ms, what could go wrong?
The princess was carefully spreading icing on the cookies while ‘ole Sparklehead was spooning icing into his mouth. Next, my girl was picking out colors and starting to decorate. I saw that my son was dropping the candy on the floor for the dog. I carried the dog to another room and heard my daughter and son both yelling and crying again. I returned to find that himself had flipped the bowl off the table, she socked him in the face and just at that moment my husband walked into the house to the sound of a banshee screaming. He said, “Hunny, pull yourself together, you’re scaring the children.” Followed by, “What happened to Jacob’s head?” To which the princess responded, “I sparkled his ugly away, now I can look at his face.”
Later that evening I burned the craft book, beat the children, took a bath and vacuumed up glitter for the next six months. And they wonder why tigers eat their young…
All the best, Sally Flynn