Today was a beautiful rainy day. The nice weather has enabled me to stay outside most of the time, so it wasn’t hard to ignore the mounted pile of clothes pushed to one side of my living room. Today, however, I had to look. I’ve worked on the sorting off and on during the last few weeks, but I never had enough time to get all the way through it. I made time finally, which led to seeing more and more that needed doing. I decided that going through the huge pile of shoes can wait. I had set my eyes on the old window we like to decorate with our handprints. Thank God for handling the weather outside, but I still need to get winter out of my house!
I let the kids look through Pinterest for ideas of what their summer thing would be, and both the boys decided quickly. The youngest went for a campfire, of course, and the oldest wanted to make a crab. The girl wanted to make a butterfly, an ice cream cone, a watermelon, a giraffe, and probably eighteen others (leave it to the woman to not be able to make up her mind), until she finally settled on a duck. The crab my oldest chose included a footprint, so we decided to do a footprint puddle for the duck to swim in and footprints instead of painting logs for the fire.
I had a few things to do to get us started. The winter panels we were replacing were done on wrapping paper (because that’s what was handy when we decided to do it). I have since decided that this is actually a long term quilting project. From now on I want to do them on fabric and eventually make them into a (or several) quilts. So step one for me was finding and cutting that fabric. We have cardboard pieces cut to fit our window spaces, and I just used one of those as a template. I left extra around the sides for pulling to the back, and trimmed the corners to take out some bulk.
Then it was time to paint.
For starters, the youngest doesn’t like to get dirty. Which is crazy because he’s always filthy. Stepping in the paint turned out to not be anything he’ll willingly do again. So we had the first fit. If you know him you know how dramatic he is. He tenses up like a board and vibrates. I’m talking there may as well have been eighteen sharks circling him. You can’t tell the difference. That went on for twenty five baby wipes worth of foot wiping. I knew if I walked away someone would step in the paint and it would be everywhere(…why do I try?) Meanwhile my
oldest was using a paintbrush to paint me some flip-flops. The girl went right to it…perfect little blue foot puddles. All of the first of two color stuff was done so they all needed paintbrushes to paint a pizza box (?) while I started some potato soup and the bottom layer dried.
Then the real fun started. My oldest son forgot to mention that he can’t balance on one foot. At All. Not even a little bit. So he immediately put his paint soaked foot down to try not to fall, but the paint made him completely slip right into the plate of paint. Talk about painting the town red!!! Everything was red!!! I had him roll his pant leg up before we started…LOL! He ended up with the rolled up part being the ONLY clean place in the room!!! I grabbed my phone and snapped a pic but he really didn’t want me sharing…so he tried to grab the phone…further spreading the mess.
I’m going to take a minute to address that. I really hadn’t thought about him getting embarrassed. This would fall under one of those bad parenting moments. I’m so willing to share the truth of it all (anyway that one would have been for NaNa) that I hadn’t stopped to think that maybe the others involved aren’t so willing. From here on out I’ll do better to ask if it’s okay. It wasn’t the story it was the picture. (After the fact) We got a good laugh about it and had a competition. Turns out I’m the best, with the twins in a tied second (they constantly use each others shoulders for support).
So, anyway, my oldest was absolutely freaking out, and I was screaming at him to stop walking (across the rug…into the kitchen…back across the rug) and that’s when I said forget it…the first time. He really wanted to do it, though. His first piece of fabric was ruined so I cut him a new piece (I barely had a piece big enough) and we tried again, this time using a chair for him to lean on. My daughter wanted a red duck but I finally convinced her that ducks are yellow. Then I found out that the yellow paint was way past it’s prime and told her, “Okay…your duck is red.” So, once again, perfect little handprint. Then it was the youngest boys turn. He did not want paint on him anymore. It took his brother convincing him that his hands would be fire before he submitted, but then boy did he!! He wanted to put his fire hands on everything!!! The other two were chasing each other around so I was trying to get a hold of him, and telling them to stop running. I finally grabbed the youngest and took him to the bathroom and the other two came around again and (sure enough) hit the paint plate while I got him rinsed off. I decided that I didn’t want to see how mad I was getting every time I look at that window. So, once again…just forget it!
It all settled finally and I changed my mind. I did decide that there was no way I was getting paint back out to do my footprint in the flip-flops, though. Later we glued some googly eyes on our crab and duck and every one was happy with their work and excited to have some new art in our window, so I guess I’m glad I didn’t forget it. As a matter of fact I’ll remember it. Someday these hands and feet will be part of a quilt made from years and years of this very same craft’s seasonal outcasts…Just another treasure stemming from all the chaos!