Little Mother is in California visiting her grandparents for two weeks. It is an exciting and heady experience for a little one to have her grandparents to herself, to travel and see the world. Her calls are full of excitement and the joy of feeling loved. In the meantime, it frees my mornings up for 2 weeks, (1 1/2 of which are left). Not that I haven't loved educating her- we have really bonded and I love being the one to waken her excitement on Egypt, Rome, and Igneous Rocks. But in the last year my home has fallen to a sad ruin I never thought possible.
To head off my natural desire to use the free time to sit, read, and dream, I listed a few projects to accomplish during my short hiatus from teacher. I've not made much progress yet, but today I wasn't scheduled to volunteer anywhere, I had no plans to visit anyone, and no company. Today is the DAY!!!
I made a list with Sunshine of the fun things she wanted to do with me and the things I wanted to accomplish today. We planned to alternate fun with work all day. But, once again life happened.
The day was half over and we had not accomplished many things on my list. Together we set the timer and worked on the craft room. The timer went off. AAAA! I've made such little progress. "Mom. It's time to play blocks. We are each going to build our own house this time."
"Honey, why don't we bring your blocks in here and you can build and I'll keep working."
"Mom, you promised. It's time to be together."
I sighed inwardly and whined to myself, "But this time is so precious! I get so very little of it."
A voice in my head immediately echoed. "Yes. This time is so precious. And you do get so little of it."
Block temples and the "house of Joseph Smith and his barn" were created with great cooperation. After switching laundry loads and mopping up all the spilled dog food in the laundry room it was on to a castle favorite, peanut butter clay.
My sweetheart often asks, "What did you do today?" Friends and family call and ask, "What is new?" I have no answers for either question. What do I do all day? How can I quantify a 4 year old's pleasure and pride, a 7 year old's discoveries, or a 10 year old's creativity?
I look at my craft room once again. After 30 minutes of hard work and a garbage can full of discards, it looks no better. But I can shut the door again, pretend the evil lurking in the basement doesn't exist.
As I prepared dinner, Sunshine said, "This was my favorite day ever. I didn't have school so I got to spend the whole day with Mom." What is a clean craft room to that I ask you? After all, this time is precious and I have very little. One day, she'll be at school, no longer seduced by peanut butter clay and I will open the craft room ... and my mess will be there ... waiting patiently.
For those of you without peanut butter clay... try ours.
Peanut Butter Clay
1/3 cup peanut butter
1/2 c. powdered milk
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup powdered sugar
Mix peanut butter, powdered milk and honey. Add powdered sugar until it is no longer sticky. I set out bowls of small foods to add to the sculptures such as: raisins, nuts, coconut, chocolate chips, mini-marshmallows, Rice Krispies, cheerios, etc.