Slap It On

Posted On June 23, 2007

Filed under Confession, Kids, Ramblings

Comments Dropped 5 responses

It struck me earlier this week that all my fun plans for the summer — the field trips, the crafts, the activities — seem to have fallen by the wayside. I’ve just been so caught up in my own agenda that I’ve pretty much ignored the kids except to boss around the boys.

Bad mommy.

Honestly, I do know this does not make me a bad mother. I’m human; I’m not perfect. I can, however, try to make things right.

So off we went yesterday to the paint-your-own pottery place at one of the malls. There’s a method to my madness: I figured the mall offered enough distractions that I could keep the toddler entertained, if need be. Plus, cheap(er) eats at the food court.

Really, I should have scrapped my plans and waited until a better day. As it was, we didn’t leave the house until 11 a.m. — so that gave us only 2.5 hours to drive there (~25 minutes), paint, eat lunch and drive home before we missed Miss L’s nap window (and thus subjected ourselves to the horror of a cranky and overtired child for the remainder of the day). Since we are completely incapable of staying on schedule, I’ll just go ahead and skip to the end and tell you we left the mall at 3:30 — a full two hours past her nap time — got her home and down for bed (surprise!), where she took a nice little nap. Whew!

The boys and I each chose little figurines to paint: a seahorse (me), a pirate parrot (J) and a Mogwai (G). (Don’t know what a Mogwai is? Perhaps you did not grow up in the ’80s. Or care nothing for pop culture of that decade. See Gremlins.) I picked out a nice, round coaster for my sweetie, since I figured that was the best way to blow $8.

The boys picked out their colors and I loaded up the girl’s tray after I filled mine. She promptly sloshed her paintbrush through all six colors, smeared them on the coaster and started using it like a stamp to decorate the paper on our table. That’s my girl! I was pretty impressed with the care with which the boys painted their pieces. The last time we painted pottery was maybe five or six years ago and they have become much more meticulous.

As expected, the 2.5 year old tired of painting faster than the rest of us. I conned convinced the boys to  chase after her (mostly retrieving her from the mall) while I finished my piece, telling them I’d go walk around with her as soon as I was done. It’s amazing how well that worked! In the meantime, the boys kept popping up out of their seats like Whack a Mole toys to chase down their sister. Run, boy! Run! See the teenager sprint. See the toddler speed up. Listen to the toddler shriek like she’s being pinched by teenager. What a mean brother!

Once my piece was done, I turned my attention to the shrieker my daughter. I loaded up a brush with some of the paint from my tray and used it to cover her little palm. We then pressed her hand against the coaster. What a lovely, smeary blue handprint! The girl at the counter used her little paint bottle to write my girl’s name on the coaster, next to her hand.  I think it will be a nice addition to her Pop’s office. (He’s already laid claim to it; I don’t think that’s fair but I’m not going to argue with him over it. I’ll just take her and make another for me.)

We left the boys to finish their pieces, then strolled to the bookstore and a few other places to do some window shopping. The poor girl really was not in the mood, not even after I picked up a chocolate milk at the coffee shop for her. We periodically checked in on her brothers, lest they think we’d abandoned them. (As long as it was taking them to paint, the thought did cross my mind.)

In the end, we turned over four really interesting pieces of pottery. I’m pretty sure everyone had fun, although I think the fun for the youngest ended after 3.6 minutes, at which point she was over the whole pottery thing. I’m really looking forward to picking up our pieces next week. I think part of the fun for me in painting pottery is the little bit of the unknown that goes along with the process. What you see isn’t always what you get once that little thing gets good and cooked. And I kind of like that — which is weird, considering what a control freak I am.

A little bit of mom guilt assuaged. You just can’t put a price on that.

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5 Responses to “Slap It On”

  1. heidi

    i totalyy love those kind of stores. we need to hit one in the next few weeks!

  2. Zabrina

    I was blogging today and guess what? Little one did. The toilet flooded. The crayons melted on the deck, outside by the sun. Cool. I can’t even blog anymore. It’s something…and there some perfet gals that will tell me, look, you can’t do anything than be a mother. You must drop everything and be just a mother, like my mother in law keeps saying. And if you tell you have to work to support the kids, the same perfect ones will tell you…why did you have kids though? Dynamite on them!
    Looks like you guys had lots of fun!!!

  3. Jessica Chapman

    Sounds like you guys had LOTS of fun! I need to do the same thing with my little one. Big plans often fall by the wayside, don’t they!

  4. foolsewoode

    Sounds like a fun, but exhausting time…

  5. Angelina

    You are a much better mommy than me this week. This is the only week I’ve really wished I had more than one kid to run interference. Oh well.

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