Remember when I gave you a little tour of the art center? Well, in that post I told you that our art center never looks that tidy, and I also promised to prove it to you in pictures.
I’m not really a crafty mom. I know you think I’m lying (you are looking at these photos, after all), but you’re just going to have to take my word for it. I like the idea of being a crafty mom, but the truth is that when it comes to hanging out with my kids, I’d much rather pick up a book and read to them. It’s just the way I’m wired.
I do, however, greatly value creative artistic pursuits, and I want my kids to have rich and varied artistic experiences. I don’t think they should get shorted on crafting just because I happen to be a bookish mom who sees a bottle of glitter and runs for the hills (or, more likely, the library).
My current MO is basically to provide a wide variety of supplies & how-to books in a designated art space, and then let my kids loose. This means I have to provide enough free time (when screens aren’t allowed, because unfortunately my kids always choose screens unless I put my foot down. What? Yours too?). It also means that I have to remind myself not to freak out when that art space looks like it imploded on itself. I want it to be used, after all, and a used art space is a messy art space. There’s not really any way around it.
One lovely thing about kids growing a little older is that as long as they have access to materials and ideas, they can pretty much take on whole artistic endeavors on their own! Let that be an encouragement to any other craft-averse mamas of littles out there: your day is coming. You don’t always have to run the horse-and-pony show yourself. At some point, if they really want to craft, they’ll run it themselves!
Every once in a while I’ll wrangle up the energy to do a family-wide craft project, or I’ll let the baby dig into the art supplies. But that’s just because I want to play with my camera. :)
A few of our favorite craft idea books:
(Amazon links are affiliate links)*
(The Forest Fairy Craft book is out-of-this-world awesome. Christmas gift worthy, definitely.)
A few of our favorite How-to-Draw books:
Lessons from Ms. Volin at Home Art Studio:
My kids can do the Home Art Studio lessons on their own. You can even buy the entire supply list for each level at Jerry’s Artarama. That’s what we gave our oldest as a Christmas gift last year.
*Amazon links are affiliate links. If you click on them and buy something (anything!), I receive compensation from Amazon at no extra cost to you. I love it when you do that. :) So thank you!