A couple of weeks ago, my friend Erin asked if I wanted to set up a crafting afternoon for our kids, so they could make gifts for their grandparents (and anyone else who might prefer a fingerpainted snowman to, say, a Dyptique candle, which would be no one, but that's besides the point). We started a Pinterest board to find projects that seemed doable without looking too much like...you know...crafts. Our goal was to make things that the recipients might actually enjoy, as opposed to things that they feel obligated to display in perpetuity because said thing was made by a child.
This entire post is going to come with a massive caveat, and the caveat is this: If you have children under the age of...I don't know, I've only been a parent for five years. At what age do children start sitting still? Five-year-olds don't, in any case. So here's the caveat: if you have kids aged five or under and decide to make a fucking wind chime, please be aware that you will end up being the one making it. (My five-year-old did, in fact, bead his very own wind chime strand...and then picked it up to show it to me, at which point all the beads fell off, transforming a happy crafting afternoon into a trauma likely to halt further beading experiments for two years, at minimum. Because that is what happens when you try to force a five-year-old to make a fucking wind chime.) (My two-year-old, in contrast, applied herself with spectacular concentration and perseverance. Except what she was concentrating on and persevering in was ensuring that every single piece of berry bunny cereal, including the ones she dropped on the floor, were eaten.)