About once a month, we pack up and head out to visit my daughter's great-grandparents for the day. It makes for a long day without a decent nap, a long car ride, and a long afternoon of saying "No! Stop! Don't touch that! Put that back! Don't break that! No touch!" (That would be me saying those things... in case you didn't recognize my voice.)
A small house that has collected not-so-small items for more than fifty years, but hasn't regularly seen a baby on the premises for over a decade does not a playground for an inquisitive toddler make.
So this weekend, as I was packing a bag for the day's trip, I had a brilliant idea. Why not pack a to-go kit of crafty stuff for my daughter to work on a "project" rather than pull out every knick-knack in her great-grandmother's living room (which is a LOT...)?
I threw some crayons, stickers, wiggly eyes, foam shape stickers, fuzzy balls, and a glue stick in a Tupperware container. I brought along a couple sheets of paper, a coloring book, and a brown lunch sack.
I briefly entertained the thought of actually putting a "real" project together for her to complete, but it was late. I was tired... and strangely achy. I think I'm old enough now to feel the weather in my bones.
We'll make it up as we go, I thought.
As it ended up, we DID pull this handy kit out (mere nanoseconds before I pulled my hair out), but got no further than gluing the eyes on a paper bag (with the high ambitions of turning it into a puppet creature of some kind) when it was time to pack up and head out the door for dinner.
She asked to work on her "project" again this morning, though, so we did pull it back out. It bought me enough time to scarf down a bagel and unload the dishwasher without being interrupted. I call that a victory.