89 Days of Greatness: Day #18
Day #18 of 89 Days of Greatness. We were sitting down to do our greatness activity when we had the most wonderful surprise: the doorbell rang, and it was a nice 22-year-old man who lived in our house years ago from when he was 8 to when he was 12. (Brian had met him the other night when he first stopped by to reminisce, but we were putting the littles to bed and gave him a rain check.)
He had graduated from college and is going to do two years with Teach for America in Chicago; he leaves for Chicago tomorrow. He just wanted to see his old house before he left Dallas for so long. We did our best to make him feel welcome. In truth, based on the way the littles treated him, you’d have thought he was The Greatest Celebrity of All Time. They absolutely could. not. wait. to show him every square inch of their rooms and tell him all about their ages, their activities, their interests, their grades, our family’s Christmas movies and plays, etc., etc., etc. Pretty sure he should receive some Best and Most Attentive Listener to Children He Won’t See Again For Many Moons award. Truly sweet surprise.
Today was also the second day of Vacation Bible School at our church. The littles were so excited to be back, and so was I. My volunteer job at VBS every year is to do chapel for the two- and three-year-olds. This year, the theme relates to the ocean and the beach, and so I set up a fun station with inner tubes and shells and stuffed animals. It’s the sweetest thing ever to watch their faces as my friend ‘Sammy the Sea Turtle’ and I lead the kids in song, a lesson, and prayer.
Since their collective attention span is about as long as a ruler, I’m not sure that anything I say (or sing!) will stick, but I know by their hugs and high-fives at the end of our time together that they feel good about what we’ve done. And that sets them up for good feelings about church and chapel for years to come, which, at their ages, is really the point of their chapel. Success.
Today’s actual greatness activity came from the what-free-activity-can-we-do-inside-that-will-use-up-some-of-our-craft-supplies part of my brain. It involved terra cotta flower pots, rope, burlap ribbon, scissors, glue (in this case, mosaic tile adhesive … because that’s what I could lay my hands on first), and a sponge. The littles are doing so many physical things during VBS that it’s nice to see them sit and engage the creation part of their brains. And since I’ve recently been in their bathrooms and found the, uh, ‘experiments’ they’ve been doing with any number of chemical combinations, somehow I thought if I headed up a craft instead of letting them continue to ‘experiment,’ we could avoid a trip to the ER to rid their lungs of whatever toxic compound their ‘experiments’ created.
The sponge is the perfect way to put glue on the band part for the littles. Then I cut wide strips of the burlap ribbon for the kids to attach to glue-y part of the flower pot. (Can you tell by that description that I don’t create or write or design for Pinterest?)
They worked to attach the burlap ribbon band to the top of the flower pot, and then they wrapped – and tacked down with glue – the twine-y ribbon (there’s that skillful use of Pinterest language again!) around the burlap ribbon band.
The littles were proud of themselves, and I was glad to have the sweet moments of creation around the table. We could have added stickers or buttons or stamps or dot paints or even decoupaged fabrics or papers if we’d wanted to, but we had other things to do … like catch an episode of Scooby-Doo. (It’s the time of day when I donate some of my brain cells to the atmosphere as they run. out. of. my. head. to escape the sham of each episode.)
P.S. Keep sending me the pictures of your 89 Days of Greatness activities! If I know you personally and you have my phone number, you are welcome to text me. Or y’all can email me your ideas and pictures at firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s been fun to see what y’all have been doing! Keep it up.