Painting Leaves and Pumpkins

My mom sent me a fun craft idea, painting leaves. I thought that Reed and Lena would enjoy it.

One Saturday, when Aaron had to work, I got everything out to do it. I covered the table in heavy paper and cardboard. I had the kids change. We weren’t having a very good day, but I was hoping some quiet time at the table might help.

I was wrong.

Yes, that happened first.

The kids did enjoy this. I also gave them the option to paint their pumpkins (hence the smashed pumpkin).

I really didn’t want to include Gus in this activity. Paint + 3 year olds = not my idea of a good time. But, he wanted to do it.

One very blue pumpkin later…

Lena enjoyed this activity the most, and spent the most time on it.

That was one of my biggest frustrations over it. I judge activities based on time spent doing the activity x fun had – time spent setting up and cleaning up the activity. The setup and clean up time made this not-very-worth-it with my boys. By the time I sat down to paint my own leaves, the boys had gotten up and dumped all of our train tracks on the floor. Wood floor + wooden train tracks = quiet time over.

Just keeping it real here. 🙂 In the world of Pinterest crafts and mommy bloggers, it’s easy to weigh everything we’re doing or not doing as parents. Are we planning regular fun activities? And, are we enjoying every moment of it? In hindsight, I think we would have had a lot more fun if I had waited until Gus was napping AND I had set up an expectation with both Reed and Lena before we began… “this is what we will be doing for Gus’s naptime today. When you decide to be done, you need to clean up your paint and go read quietly in the living room.”

Oh well, lesson learned for next year!

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