You know how you try to save yourself money on a gift, but you tell yourself that it would be more meaningful to make something than buy something and then you proceed to spend more money than you ever would have spent on a store-bought gift as you attempt to make something that turns out crappy and you try to fix it and it turns out crappier and then you think, “Who needs friends who are going to criticize your gifts anway? I’m just going to sit at home and watch The Big Bang Theory by myself for the rest of my life,” and you can’t even find a garbage bag big enough to fit the Giant Pinterest-Inspired Disaster that cost you $200?
So, it’s the end of the school year. Teacher gift time. Only this year is my daughter’s last year in elementary school, so she has decided to bestow 9 gifts upon the various people who have enriched her life. And, reeling from a Pinterest induced stupor, I suggested a project.
I spent my entire Sunday trying to find the supplies for this project, which included chalkboard contact paper.
There was no chalkboard contact paper to be found. I went to 5 stores.
I would like to take this opportunity to give Home Depot, Walmart, Michael’s, and Target the following advice – if you stocked your stores based on Pinterest boards you would make so much more money. And your employees would not look at me like I’m on crack when I ask for chalkboard contact paper.
The only reason I didn’t go to 6 stores is because Hobby Lobby is closed on Sundays. So, I improvised. It turns out that my craft improvisations are just as successful as my recipe ad-libs.
I directed my daughter to use her chalk on the black shelf paper I had purchased. It looked great. Only problem? It smeared like crazy.
“Oh, I know what to do about this,” I said, and went to the bathroom.
To get hairspray.
I sprayed the hairspray on a swathe of chalk designs. They faded into black.
I tried 3 different hairsprays. My daughter was getting a bit panicked as I systematically set about destroying her nine masterpieces.
“Okay, that’s not working.”
The next day, I borrowed some super fancy spray for chalk drawings from the art teacher.
“You’re not going to spray that in the house?” Cap’n Firepants asked.
“I’m just checking to see if it works,” I said as I asphyxiated the two of us.
I told the art teacher, who then recommended chalk markers, which will apparently not smear, but can be removed easily with water. ( I didn’t really pay attention to the water removal option, as I figured, why would anyone want to remove my daughter’s beautiful artwork?)
“Where can I find this miraculous product?”
“Oh, Hobby Lobby should have it.”
So, Dimples and I trekked to Hobby Lobby. Which was open. Because it was not Sunday. We found the chalk markers. Right next to the chalkboard contact paper.
Dimples did not want to re-cover every notebook with chalkboard contact paper, so we opted for the markers. But I bought the paper anyway. For the inevitable next time I will need it. I also threw in some chalkboard paint. You can never have too many chalkboarding options.
She redecorated every notebook using the markers.
She put them on the floor to dry.
I think you can see from the pictures what happened next.
Poor Wonderbutt had no idea why I blew a gasket when all he was doing was chewing on his ball.
But I don’t blame Wonderbutt. I blame Hobby Lobby. FOR NOT BEING OPEN ON A SUNDAY WHICH IS THE ONLY DAY THAT I HAVE TIME TO DO PROJECTS THAT I FOUND AT THE LAST MINUTE ON PINTEREST.
I’m going to buy gift cards tomorrow.
And they won’t be for Hobby Lobby.
I was reading the Sunday paper and came across this quote in an article about the recent spate of parenting books written by inept moms, “There wasn’t this acceptance about being this sort of less-than-perfect mother, but all of a sudden it feels like that is becoming the norm, rather than the exception.” This was spoken by Jill Smokler of scarymommy.com.
Well, that explains what I’ve been doing wrong. I need to stop talking about what I’m doing wrong, and start talking about what I’m doing right because there are far too many other people who are talking about what they are doing wrong, and they are doing it far better than I am. The wrong, I mean. Well, and the talking.
So, from now on I pledge to stand out from the pack and tell you all of the things that I am doing right as a mom. Starting today.
1.) My daughter has eaten hamburgers three days in a row.
Why is this right? Well, I am so glad you asked. Even though I would think it should be obvious. It’s right because my daughter has eaten three days in a row. Duh. Plus, she loves lettuce and cheese on her hamburger. So, there you have it – all 10 food groups in one meal. Three times. Two more and I will have Food Bingo.
2.) I bought my daughter a dress for her 5th grade graduation while we were shopping for clothes for me on Mother’s Day.
Why is this right? This is another no-brainer. We made one trip to the mall, and now I don’t have to make another trip to the mall until August. Possibly even September if I can find a post on Pinterest on how to transform a yellow lacy dress into a backpack.
3.) Oh. My. God. That is the best idea. Ever. I am going to quit my job and support my daughter by making Graduation Dress Backpacks.
Why is this right? Because my daughter will see how important it is to pursue your passion in life instead of saving up for retirement.
And then, she will be happy to support me in my twilight years (although I may have to explain that this is a different kind of “Twilight”) as she pursues her lifelong passion to teach bulldogs synchronized swimming.
And then we will bond even more.
“His name is MacGyver. He can fix anything. He could fix a computer with a hairpin and a piece of duct tape.”
Dimples and Cap’n Firepants have been bonding lately over MacGyver. I tried to watch it with them, but ended up laughing so hard at the critical moments that they kicked me out.
It could be that the background music is ridiculously corny. Or, it could be that I can’t get Saturday Night Live’s MacGyver spoofs (MacGruber) out of my head. Or, it could be that I just don’t like to take things very seriously.
I’ve been trying to figure out why Dimples has a sudden affinity for this television show from the 80’s – other than the fact that her dad likes it, too. (Notice that I don’t question why her dad finds the show so fascinating; he’s a bit of a MacGyver, himself.)
When I looked up quotes from the show, I found a possible connection. Pretty much one out of three quotes from the guy is about duct tape.
“If I had some duct tape, I could fix that.”
Dimples loves duct tape. In case you haven’t had a chance to peruse the duct tape aisle of your local Target store lately, it has changed dramatically since the days of the silver colored hardware accessory. It comes in a multitude of colors, including pink with white polka dots, blue plaid, leopard print, and neon colored peace signs. Duct tape has branched out.
Why, you may ask yourself, would anyone want duct tape with neon colored peace signs?
Apparently, like MacGyver, the world has realized that duct tape has many uses. And one of them is for crafts.
Oh yes, you would be amazed at the gifts one can make from duct tape, including: bags, pens, bows, flowers, and wallets. Google it and you will find people who have made prom dresses and wedding dresses out of the stuff.
Dimples, our little 8-year old entrepeneur, has made a tiny side business out of making duct tape bags, such as this Halloween Trick or Treat bag:
We have a huge bin of duct tape in various patterns to fit any occasion. Except fixing things. I don’t think Cap’n Firepants really wants to use Hello Kitty duct tape to fix his lawn mower or the vacuum cleaner hose.
So, now I’m picturing MacGyver in another one of his hairy situations, saying, “If only I had a roll of duct tape.” His current babe of the moment whips a roll of zebra striped tape out of her bra, and hands it to him. He gratefully accepts it, turns away from the camera, and, in a matter of seconds, turns back around with this:
“For the past seven years I have done nothing but travel around the world getting shot up, locked up, blown up… and all I have to show for it are a couple of empty rolls of duct tape.”
That’s what I want on my tombstone.