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thirty days of thankful: parenting+hybrid scrapbooking one-two

Tue September 21 2010

i was surprised one day when my little girl began reading the on-screen channel guide while i was flipping through it. it was one of the first demonstrations of her new fluency.  and immediately i thought that life as we knew it was o.v.e.r.  no more glossing over unwanted schedules (“oh no, looks like Max and Ruby isn’t on AT ALL…”), no more blissful ignorance over signage messages, no more faking warnings (“oh no, look! that sign says all kids have to leave the playground by 2pm – we have to go!” for example. don’t give me that look. you know you’ve done it.).

fast forward a bit, and now she’s eight and some, she soaks in all manner of signage, advertising, directions, warnings, tag lines, percent off notices, BOGO signs, puppies for sale signs, channel guides — you name it. she reads EV.ER.Y.THING. especially those things i a)wish she wouldn’t b)purposefully try to shield her from. i guess that’s what growing up is, what parenting an older child is – realizing you can’t shape and dictate their total environment and experience any more. someone WILL sometime be mean on the playground. she WILL be corrected by a teacher, deserved or not. she WILL comprehend all advertising sneakily targeted to her.  apparently, she WILL watch YouTube videos at other people’s houses (see my hands waving in the air? see me talking animatedly? she me shaking my head, pulling my hair out?!).  she WILL desperately want that plastic made in China toy that spins and sings on the tv in between segments of that show i’m not sure she should watch. i WILL be 1-2-3-4-5-6-switching…

so, we end up talking a lot about gratitude. about an attitude of gratitude. about being thankful for what you DO have. not all the things we want and then only thankful for the things we get.  i try. i have more strategies to try, things i mean to get to, things i think will help. i have more work to do on my own tone of voice while issuing these monologues. i have to monologue less. but anyway, we have to pay more attention to those things we DO have, those things in a day that we think are special or make us feel lucky or loved, those things or moments or experiences that make us happy and thankful they happened.  this is not a list of Mattel materialism. this is working towards a looking deeper into the meaning, emotion and feelings of our days.  this is seeing what’s good and beautiful, even if the rest of the day was disappointing, crabby, not what we wanted, difficult, just okay or otherwise. this is being thankful for the newspaper clipping of the ostrich because it means someone was thinking of you and wanting you to be happy, not sulky because “that’s all she sent me?” incredulousness.

so, i had an inspired moment while looking at a bunch of new digital scrapbooking products at jessicasprague.com.  but it led to something i love – some seredipitious alchemy / when two worlds collide. parenting needs and scrapbooking. i resurrected our Gratitude Journal.  both she and i have had previous versions of this.  she: a re-covered notebook with endless blank pages within which she was to get busy drawing and writing her world of gratitude. not quite sustainable for such a youngster.  me, i had a go at a daily gratitude mini layouts, like this one:

that was a little bit of daily scrapping fun, but really wasn’t that sustainable either 😉

so NOW TODAY we’re both in the early days of Thirty Days of Thankful – she in her hybrid  journal/minibook that i made, and me using my twitter. if you are interested or want to tweet your graditude along with me, just search #thirtydaysofthankful. you’ll see i am numbering my thirty days to keep track. i think i’m at 6 right now. no, they’re not continuous days necessarily, but it’s nice and motivating to have a beginning and a defined end. i don’t feel the pressure to ensure i’m whipping myself into daily habit shape for all perpetuity, which is daunting. i can start and end this little project, and i just might find it has lasting effects, pressure or perpetuity or not. same for the kid.

here’s what i made for my girl – all hybrid / digi supplies from jessicasprague.com designers – Creativity by Crystal; Elle’s Studio; Cosmo Cricket; Echo Park Paper Co, printed and cut out at home. i punched one hole in each with my crop-a-dile, cut and covered some blank chipboard pieces for covers. i left the back as-is, and altered the front with some more printed elements and some vintage papers. add in some watercolours and get down to the nitty gritty of being intentionally, consciously thankful.

please click {HERE} to see the photos with full kit credits in the Inspiration Gallery at jessicasprague.com

now, what are you thankful for today?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Sun October 10 2010 10:15 am

    I absolutely LOVED this book!! It’s so adorable!!

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