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Fairy Garden Fun

I have what people call a brown thumb. This is problematic right now because our new house has several flower beds. I decided that since I am not really good with plants, I might do some other things in those gardens that don’t interfere with the plants that seem to grow on their own. Thank goodness they do that by themselves.

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I have been noticing Fairy Garden stuff everywhere…at Target, Home Depot, and even the dollar stores. Miss Crankles volunteered to be my partner in crime on this project, and she happily picked out pieces to start our project.

We decided that the fairies needed some houses, so we grabbed a few houses, and I am going to paint some more at ceramics class.

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To make it more interesting, I told her the fairies lived there. Then we set a fairy figure by the swing set so that he could push any fairies on the swing that may come upon our little garden.

We also thought they needed a place to sit, so we positioned a table and chairs. Then we placed another fairy there to await company.

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To finish the start of our fairy garden, we put a little bridge with a fairy to welcome others to our little fairy garden.

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The key to making this fun has been telling a story as we have been creating this garden. Miss Crankles is small, but she has a big imagination and loves being told how the fairies are going to visit the garden at night and stay in our little fairy houses and swing on our fairy swing. Adding whimsy to your life can make you feel like a kid too. Telling her the story and seeing her excitement makes me want to believe that maybe at night while I sleep, the fairies will play in the little garden we made.

What kinds of things do you do to spark imagination? I would love to hear your story in the comments below!

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The need to be creative

I recently re-organized the kids’ toy room, so that the kids would be able to play with their toys, but the baby would also be able to play with hers as well. One of the biggest components of this was organizing the massive costume closet they have. My big kids are 11 and 8. They still love to dress up. Heck, it is one of the things their friends love to do when they come to our house. We have everything from Toy Story costumes, to princess costumes, to our fabulous Star Wars Villains collection, (which leads to my daughter doing mash-ups like this):

Darth Vader's lesser known cousin, Sleeping Vader

Darth Vader’s lesser known cousin, Sleeping Vader.

I know my kids are getting older, and the big kids probably won’t be able to play with, (or fit into), their costumes forever. They probably won’t be playing with most of their toys soon either…except maybe for Legos. I still play with Legos. Legos are for everyone!

Anyways, I say this because sometimes I think we make our kids grow up too fast. We want them to be the best in school, sports, and extra-curriculars. They get involved in so many things that they don’t have time to play. We don’t want our kids to fall behind, and so we cut out play time. However, play time is important too. It lets their imagination flow and inspires creativity.

I remember being so sad one day  a few years ago, when a lady came into my shop with her daughter. She was about six year’s old, (which was my daughter’s age at the time). The mother said the daughter could get something, but everything she brought the mother disapproved of because she said the daughter was too big for it. They were all things that my daughter played with at the time and loved. They were things for playing salon with her doll and making crafts. It broke my heart because she probably didn’t get to play pretend or dress up or have the same adventures my daughter did. My daughter thrives on that. She can be serious when she needs to be, but she also needs to be silly and play with her dolls and build spaceships out of Legos with her brother.

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I guess my philosophy is that they are only children for a short time. They will be grown-ups for the rest of their lives. I want them to have a childhood they look back upon fondly. I want them to do amazing things with their lives and careers, but I also want them to have an imagination, if only to see things from a different perspective.