Thursday, October 03, 2013

Parental Arts & Crafts

I didn't make it to Body Combat tonight.    I have a fog around me created by a laundry list of poor choices recently.  This fog was thick and so... it just didn't happen - but THAT is a post for another time.

What did happen was what I like to call Parental Arts & Crafts (we'll call it PAC).  One of those terribly mundane tasks that would make most parents scream or jump off the nearest cliff.  Not me.  I LOVE IT.  I love it as much as I love coloring books.  I love it because it allows me (grumpy tired adult with responsibilities) to zone out and let my inner child with OCD take over.

Today's  PAC moment came in the form of school box tops. I plan for these moments.  Well, inner OCD child plans for these.  It starts in the grocery store, casually walking down the aisles and checking off the grocery list.  Then we get there.  We get faced with the HUGE decision... generic or brand name:
Grumpy adult with responsibilities: Generic - save money.. tastes the same
Inner OCD child: WAIT... look.... a pink box... THERE IS A PINK BOX.  AND OMG - it is a 3 BOX BONUS!!  Please please please... PUH-LEASE!!!

Then we get home.  The inner OCD child mantra begins.... "don't forget about the box top... don't forget (that item) has box tops.. maybe we should ruin the box now and cut out the box tops because you know those stinky boys are just going to throw it away!!"  Several days (or weeks) later, I see that cereal box in the garbage about to head out for trash day.... "UGH!! What is WRONG with you people... you might as well just throw a dime in the trash... you are throwing away money!!!  Money for the children!!!"

So the tops get collected.  They get hoarded in a zip lock plastic bag (yes a ZIPLOCK BRAND plastic bag because there was a double box top for back to school).  The bag is filled and it sits there until I need it.  It has to be full.  It has to look meaningful.  It has to wow the teacher.  Yeah - I picture it.  I see it clearly in my head.  My precious glowing child presenting the plethora of box tops that will save the school budget and pay for the teacher's lounge coffee this semester.  All because of ME!!!

So here we are... tonight.... it's time.  I need some zoning out time.  I gather my tools.  Paper, scissors, tape.  I take time to cut each box top perfectly along the pre-printed white dotted lines.  I organize them - 3 bonus box tops here.. single box tops there.  Stack them in piles of 10 then divide the piles into two - one stack for Max, one for Ben.  For one beautiful hour we have done crafts and simple math to create art.

It's beautiful.  It's satisfying.  They are clean cut little pink soldiers ready to battle the evils of congressional budget cuts.  BONUS - Ben get's to enter a give-a-way!!  For every sheet of box tops, he gets one entry into the drawing. And THIS mother-of-the-year just bought her son 4 ENTRIES to win that stuffed Despicable Me Minion or Monster's University "plush toy".  SCORE!!!

It's the little things people.  The little things that help get me through the day.

Now I am going to put my pajamas on and watch TV 30 minutes after it has aired live so I can fast forward through the commercials.


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