Being a Mother, I lost myself in the young years of raising children. Our first was born in 2014 and our youngest is 4....so for 9 years now, I have been a shell of who I once was. It's a difficult reality to accept. If you have been through this, you understand that the woman you were before having children is gone. Some will argue that the new woman is a better, stronger you, but, some of us also mourn the parts of us that have been buried so far under the veil of motherhood, that we are struggling to find joy in the newer version of ourselves. In navigating who I am now, I have done a lot of reflection. I am trying to be more aware of my unhealthy traits, and work on finding joy in the struggles. Through it all, I have also began to appreciate some of the quirks that lead to my frustrations, such as the short-circuiting of my mind that is amplified by being a creative individual. I have lots, AND LOTS, of ideas and dreams, sometimes too many to even begin processing them, yet they swirl around in my head, distracting me from all the other things that are calling my name...sometimes LITERALLY CALLING MY NAME. Luckily, I am starting to get some help with that ;) One of the ideas that has been swirling in my mind for years has been to compile a book project that I used to do with my 3 year old artists when I taught in Washington, D.C. To introduce these little ones in to art, and the many skills needed to create, such as mark making, cutting, gluing, fine motor development, etc., I collaborated with their classroom teachers who were already doing a “Letter of the Week”. I set up my room in centers, each one with different hands on activities to reinforce the letter they were learning about in their classrooms. We slowly created our way through the alphabet, so that at the end of the year, every kid had a beautiful handmade Alphabet Book to take home and cherish. For years, I have been dreaming about creating this book to share with other mamas that are blessed to stay home with their littles for those precious early developmental years, or early childhood educators that need grab-n-go activities for their little learners. This book combines fine motor development activities with letter and shape recognition, while also allowing kids to explore art materials while making letter crafts. To grab a copy of my first book, ABC Create with Me: Fun Alphabet Arts & Crafts Book for ages 3-6, click HERE. To maximize the creative potential of this book, I would also suggest getting some basic art supplies through the Amazon links I share below. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. If you are using this for very young learners (like 3-4) OR want your children to work independently, crayons are essential! Crayola Construction Paper Crayons are my absolute favorite for their bold, bright colors. I am also a big fan of the vibrancy of oil pastels, and would recommend these as they are a classroom favorite for my students. The coloring materials are necessary, however I truly designed this book with the firm belief in the power of creating TOGETHER, so I encourage caregivers to create along with their children. If necessary, assist in cutting shapes for littles to glue down when making their letter projects. My top colored paper recommendation is this Astro Brights Pack because there are so many color options to choose from! If your child is independent in their cutting and gluing, talk about their artistic choices. Ask questions. Share stories. Celebrate their efforts. Prioritize the 10-15 minutes to really focus on the work your child is doing, and enjoy the time spent together creating their own Alphabet Book.
With Creative Love,