Category: Mothers

Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

Lately, I have been keeping my eyes open, trying to find crafts for kids that use scrap fabric.  My stash of scrap fabric is taking over my studio, and so the other day when I was spring cleaning I decided I needed to let my daughter help me.

crafts for kids with scrap fabric

First, she made a house.  It was much like a gingerbread house, but we used fabric, glue and an old box instead of cookies, icing, and candy.

crafts for kids with scrap fabric

She also decorated a few paper dolls and a paper horse.  The outcome was adorable and it occupied her for days.  Along with that, it was a great activity to help with her cutting and gluing skills.  I didn’t realize this, but children’s scissors will cut fabric.  (I bet they will also cut hair and clothes then –note to self!)

After Monet was all done, I still had gobs of fabric left, so we put together about ten kits for other cousins and friends.

Crafts for Kids with Scrap Fabric

What kid crafts have you done, as a means to use up all that scrap fabric?

Hey, Jude

My “maternity leave” is almost up, and the picture above is a pretty accurate one when it comes to the reality of our lives for the past few months.  At first, Josh and I thought we hit the jackpot.  Our baby boy Jude didn’t cry and he put himself to sleep.  But each day that seemed to change, as Jude became more and more unhappy.  I adored the little man, and so I just endured his crying.  I didn’t call our pediatrician until my oldest sister, who was visiting over Christmas, said that our precious Jude was the “fussiest baby she has ever seen”.  Yikes!

After a few visits to the doctor, we finally figured out the cause of Jude’s discomfort and we have learned how to manage it with medicine, a new bed, and some simple feeding rules. He has what’s called “Silent Reflux”, ironic I realize.  I wonder if there is a support group out there for parents who have infants with reflux –there should be.

Every day, for a few weeks after we put Jude on medication, my husband would come home and ask if the day was better.  My response was always, “Look around.  The house says it all.”  If it looks like a tornado has come through the home, not a dish is clean, dust-bunnies are blowing around the floor like tumbleweed in a desert, and I’m still in my PJ’s and hungry because I was unable to eat lunch, well, that explains the day.

Lately, things have been different though.  Jude seems a little bit happier with life outside momma’s belly.  He allows me to put him down when he naps, and instead of crying around the clock, he smiles and coos at times.

I’m hopeful that soon he will outgrow most of this, and be just a little more content to, say, for example, sit in a baby swing, awake, by himself, for more than 5 minutes.  (Sorry for the sarcasm.  Josh and I have found humor to be a good coping mechanism.)

In the meantime, I’m making lists and setting goals.  Ambition is creeping back into my life, and work opportunities have been knocking at my door.  Every day’s prospect of actual productivity is a mystery, but I’m hopeful nonetheless.

And truthfully, for the most part, I guess I’m just thankful.  I have two wonderful children who have brought such purpose and happiness into my life.  Work can wait, but these two kiddos, they just keep on growing and changing.

Some Good News

An entire month has passed, and I have only posted on my blog once –I wonder if I still have any readers. Well, for those of you who were about to send out a search party, there’s no need, I’m alive, and I guess I owe you an explanation. Would you like to guess where I’ve been?

Where has Angela been?
A) On Vacation  B) Sleeping & puking  C) Getting her computer fixed  D) All of the above

And the correct answer is D) All of the above.

Yes, yes, I actually have more than one excuse. My computer broke, but it’s now fixed. Also, we took a long and needed vacation to Florida, while it rained and snowed here in Utah. But the main reason for my absence is reason B) Sleeping and puking.

This brings me to my good news, I’m pregnant!

Unfortunately though, pregnancy in my world for the first four months is hell. I realize that some woman go through pregnancy without a touch of nausea, but for other woman, we aren’t so lucky. Nausea, and extreme fatigue have plagued me, all day long, for weeks. My poor daughter asks me a few times a day, “Mommy, you sick? Your belly hurt?”, as she plays in the bathroom while I hug the toilet. In the past, pre-pregnancy, I always worked from 5-7 in the morning, over Monet’s afternoon nap, and in the evenings after everyone had gone to bed.  Lately though, sleep has taken priority, and so I’ve been away.  I do hope you understand.  The good news though is that I’m starting to have good days here and there, and hopefully, this “morning” sickness too will pass.

So, what have you been up to while I’ve been away?

Who Does She Think She Is

Do mothers have an obligation to society?  What is that obligation?  Is it to solely be a mother and nothing else? On the other hand, what about the obligations of a society? Does society have a responsibility to uphold in regards to enabling its mothers to be successful?  Are there not two sides to this relationship?

Think about all the expectations and pressures that fall on a mother: to be a wife, a financial contributor, a manager of the household, and an unselfish nurturer in every sense of the word.  Mothers are expected to be all of these things and we also tell them to find time to be a person of their own.  How is a mother to balance her obligations along with her ambitions and needs?

Society tells us that mothers need to care for their children and spouses, that they need to be in the work force, that they need to be breaking through, continuing the path that all those feminists paved before them.  Yet despite all this hard work, the average woman still earns just 77 cents on the dollar, when compared to her male counterpart. If we go one step further and factor in the cost of childcare on top of the artificially low salary, the scales are skewed even further. Why would a mother choose to work with odds like this stacked against her?  This alone seems to be enough to put a damper on a mother’s dreams.  How do mothers navigate this delicate balancing act with such a weight on their shoulders?  I never truthfully understood the inherent dilemma of motherhood until I myself became a mom.  Some days have left me wondering, should a mother, a good mother, follow her own ambitions, or is this selfish on her part, like society often makes it seem?

I realize most woman choose to have children.  I consciously made a choice, and will make that choice again when the time is right.  Just think though, of all the people you know.  Their mothers chose to mother them, and to do so they probably had to put some of their aspirations on hold.  Mothers do so  much for society when they raise a child well, yet are judged harshly when they make mistakes.  But what happens when a society fails to provide for its mothers?  Here’s my fear and dilemma.  I don’t want my daughter saying I wasn’t around when she was growing up because all I did was work.  But I also can’t be a one-dimensional “cookie cutter” of a mom.  I want her to see me for the diverse and wonderful woman that I am.  When she grows up I want her to aspire to be like me, a person who had passions and followed her dreams, but also was able to balance it alongside the irreplaceable beauty of being a mother.

Many of the questions I have posed in this post may not necessarily have a specific answer. I simply ask them with the intention and hope that they will inspire thought and reflection in my readers. Where does responsibility lie regarding the relationship between mothers and society?

Please follow this link and go see a preview of “Who Does She Think She Is?” by Pamela Tanner Boll.  This documentary changed my life. And when you’re finished, please come back here and join the conversation…