My friend Karly from Paisley Roots has a series called A Giving Christmas in which I participated last year. I was really excited to hear she was doing it again this year and quickly jumped on board. This is a good time of year to remind our kids (and ourselves) about the spirit of giving.
Since Bean is three and a half and still into animals, I thought we'd tackle another easy bird feeder. Last year's was a big hit and she really seemed to get that we were doing something kind for the birds. There's a lot of talk about being kind this year (it's tough being three years old) so I thought it'd be a great way to emphasize the point. She has teachers this year so I thought it'd also be a gift that she could make to give to her teachers. We used most of the recipe found here from Salt Water Kids. **Spoiler Alert**
It did not end well for the birds, hehe. After letting the bird feeders dry overnight they just sort of crumbled when we took them out of the molds. I cannot blame the original recipe at all...
...because of course I switched up some of the ingredients and I'm certain that was the issue. I didn't use flour or corn syrup and used peanut butter instead. Looking back I think the flour and corn syrup must act like a glue. I was hoping the peanut butter and gelatin would be enough to hold them together, but alas.
Now, I could have just posted a few cute pics of Bean making these ornaments and then pretended everything went off without a hitch, but that would probably be the opposite of what this series is intended to be, hehe.
This was the first time I've let Bean make something where she got to put in all the ingredients and stir and do it all herself. I am a bit of a control freak about our kitchen, but we did these outside in our not-quite-finished-but-completely-sealed-in-so-a-couple-of-space-heaters-do-the-trick-new sunroom so I let her take control.
And she LOVED it. She did a great job with all of the steps and was really careful about keeping each ingredient in the bowl.
It's easy to miss these moments when we're rushing through life and don't take the time to stand back and watch.
It's easier for me to just do things quickly myself rather than have Bean help out, but I can see it's important to her that I let her participate sometimes.
In the coming year I'm sure I'll need reminders to stop, slow down, and let her help but for sure this was a teaching moment for me. Just watching how excited she was (mixed with a sort of disbelief) that I was letting her do it all was really fun.
Even though we'll have to regroup and try a different approach to the bird feeder recipe (cause again, it's more fun to try to make up your own recipe), this wasn't really a fail at all. I gave Bean the reigns and she gave me a bit of perspective. So in the spirit of giving we sort of hit the mark, right? Do you guys have traditions at your house that help keep you grounded this time of year? I'd love to hear them!