Reconnecting with my threenager using arts and crafts.

Recently, Miss Kaboodle has had an attitude shift. All of a sudden, she has become a right royal pain in my bottom. Her attitude stinks! I cannot get over the complete change I have seen in her. She is argumentative, defiant, stubborn,  contrary and rude. I started to pick on myself because of her behaviour. I have been busy with stuff to do with KaboodleMum over the past few weeks and I’ve been trying to learn a little bit more about what happens within a post too, like picking up some CSS and HTML hints and tips, I think, and I’m probably right in thinking it, that Willow has been feeling a little bit left out. With KaboodleDad also working different hours this week and last, she has had a few life changes to adapt to too, I don’t blame her for kicking out and playing up a little bit. After all, what we pay attention too we get more of.

I was, for the most part, not taking a lot of notice of her. It’s just poor time keeping skills on my part really. So I have vowed to change that about my days. I want to make sure that Willow gets the time she needs from me in the day. I’m not saying that I DON’T EVER spend time with her because that would be a big fat lie. Our crafting is proof that we do spend lots of time together but, recently, with me being a bit busier than usual and her as curious as ever, We have experienced a lot of attitude.

Who can blame her, she wants to be busy, she’s a child that would move at 100mph if she could, I have to make sure that she gets the stimulation she needs. This is another reason why I am annoyed that we had to stop doing the wrap around because she was a much happier child when she was doing it. Does not to dwell though.

A few nights ago KaboodleDad and I both sighed with the sense of relief after Willow had gone to bed and that’s something very new to the both of us, Neither of us have ever really looked forward to willow going to bed. We sat down and chatted afterwards and I told him that I would adjust my days so that what I need to get done, gets done when I have the time and not when I have a child that needs to be entertained. My plan was to build a den and get her whole library out, play hide and seek and just generally have a good time.
When I woke up yesterday morning and made the suggestion to Willow she looked me square in the eye and said “No.” I wanted to get angry, I wanted to say well I tried, but, I hadn’t really tried all I had done was made a suggestion. So I asked her;
“What would you like to do?”
“Nothing.”
“you can’t just do nothing all day, there must be something you would like to do?”
“No.”
“what if we do some reading?”
“No. I don’t like to.”
“right, okay. So what do you like?”
“activity.”
“would you like to do an activity?”
“yes.” *musters a half-smile*
“right, let’s get up then and we will have some breakfast and then do an activity.”
“yes! Mummy that sounds like a good idea!”

So there we have it. What I planned was no more and instead, an activity needed to be planned. I’d been holding out on a craft because wanted to save it for later in the month but I figured there was no point in holding onto it if Willow was going to be a big grump in the meantime. Christmas Stocking Arts and Crafts, here we come.
“fancy doing some cutting and gluing?”
“yes please” *voice about 5 octaves too high* Willow LOVES cutting stuff up, She loves it. A sniff at an activity involving scissors and she’s like a fly to shit! I got out all the stuff to do this activity and we set ourselves up for some fun.
stockingIf you fancy doing this, here’s what you’ll need;
Glue, PVA and Glue stick.

Craft paper, Whatever colour you choose

Cotton wool balls

Scissors, for you and for the little one

Something to plaint glue on with

A pen or a pencil

A Toy magazine or catalogue

You will need draw the shape of a stocking onto the paper and cut it out. stocking1

Then you will need to let your little one loose with the scissors and the catalogue. This is easy, just give it to them and let them do what they like. It gives them the freedom of choice and the independence of what and how to cut.

If they need a little guidance with regards to cutting or holding the scissors, help them but try not to take over, let them make the decisions and pick what they would like to cut out. Let them do it messily too, you can cut them neater as they cut more out of the book. Willow loved this activity and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. She was telling me about what she liked and what she was going to ask Santa for. It’s not only a way for kids to develop themselves physically but it’s also a great way to get them talking, using different words and expressing feelings.
(The biggest bonus is getting a feel of what they want for Christmas too!)

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Next you will want to use the PVA and cover some of the stocking at the top.

Stick the cotton wool balls onto the wet glue and gather all of your cut outs.

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Add a spot of glue to various different places over the stocking and glue on the cut outs.

It’s easy to see that Willow was very content with this project and we spent the entire time talking about Christmas and all the things she could see and people she knew and lots of other stuff too.

She cut out a few pictures which were of gifts for her cousins and added them onto her stocking too. Her pointing out who’s was who’s and telling me what they were was funny. I enjoyed spending the time with her and it was nice reconnecting with her over our favourite pastime. stocking5
The most beneficial thing to come out of the activity was her telling me about being hit in school. She was so relaxed and content that throughout our conversations and talking about other people, she came out with “*NAME* hit me in school Mummy. It wasn’t very nice.” We discussed this, I asked her if it hurt and where she was hit and then she told me that she had been poked in the eye too. We continued talking about it and I explained that hitting isn’t nice and if anybody hits her she must tell her teachers. She mustn’t hit anybody back or do anything nasty, she should just got straight to her teacher and tell them what had happened, “I will mummy, I do.” was her response.

There’s nothing I can do about her getting hit, but this activity and reconnection with my wayward whump has taught me that no matter what, I must always give her a chance to talk to me.

Our reconnection didn’t end there. We also went for a long walk together after school yesterday and it was super nice. Just me and her, holding hands walking together. We talked and I used the time to talk in Welsh with her. I started off with a little word here and there and then I turned it into a sentence which was a question and she was able to answer it! We laughed and joked and talked and jumped and skipped and laughed some more.

By dinnertime, she was pretty much her old bubbly, giggly, self and even though KaboodleDad and I we’re glad to see her in bed, it was because she was tried and not because we we’re fed up of her attitude. I will continue to take more time for Willow and adapt my routine around her.

As always, thanks for reading! signature

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