‘Tis the season for gratitude!
In effort to start teaching Mateo about being thankful while creating a fun display for the kitchen, we got busy making a gratitude wreath. This is, by far, my favorite crafting project for a number of reasons. First off, my main goal as a mother is to successfully manage to not raise an asshole. A large part of that is cultivating a feeling of thankfulness for one’s life. I, myself, start my mornings with an email gratitude list with a few friends and I love how it gets me in a thankful frame of mind before I get wrapped up in the day to day stresses of life. This is a practice I want to cultivate early in him. Therefore, part of this crafting experience was talking about what makes us happy. Doing so with an almost two year old sounds something like this (please be advised that despite my efforts, my son thinks his name is Taymo. I’m hoping this passes):
Me: What makes you happy?
Mateo: Taymo happy!
Me: Yes. Do dinosaurs make you happy?
Mateo: Taymo happy dinosaur!
Me: Great. Do Thomas trains make you happy
Mateo: Taymo happy dinosaur Thomas train.
From there, we moved on to listing the things that I know make my son happy as I wrote the items on each of the handprints. He sat on my lap and it was the sweetest experience we’ve had in a while. I asked “does mama make you happy?” and he would say yes. Then we would talk about why the person or thing in question makes him happy (ex: “mama makes you happy because she loves you and gives you hugs?”) as I wrote the name on the handprint. Once all the hands were labeled, we moved to the gluing portion of the craft. These are the moments that define why I craft with my toddler. Sure, sometimes it ends up with glue in the nose or paint in my mouth. On more than one occasion something didn’t go his way and a meltdown ensued. But, then there are these moments of discussion and memory making between my kid and I. Those are the moments I wouldn’t trade for the world.
- Paper plate
- Construction paper
- Pencil to trace your child’s hand
- Trace your child’s hand on a piece of construction paper. I did this randomly while he was coloring. Then, I used it to create the handprints to cover the perimeter of the paper plate while he was napping.
- Talk about what he or she is thankful for. As they list the things that they’re grateful for, write one item or person on each handprint.
- Once all the handprints are labeled, have your child glue them to the edge of the plate until all are attached and the perimeter is covered. Label the wreath and display.