be mine

I’ve mentioned here before that I’m not particularly crafty, so usually when I need something artsy, I tend to buy it rather than make it myself. That being said, I’m unemployed, which means I’m trying to find ways to save a buck.

This Friday is Lucas’s kindergarten class’s Valentine’s Day party… oh wait, I’m sorry, Friendship Party (give me a break…) and Lucas was tasked with creating a “friendship card” for each one of his classmates. Each one of his 21 classmates.

I really didn’t want to go out and spend money on a box of superhero Valentines or Transformers or whateverthehell Lucas would have chosen for his friends. I have construction paper. I have stickers. I have markers and crayons and an abundance of other coloring supplies. I decided he was going to make his Valentines. How hard could it be, right? Nothing fancy. I’d cut construction paper into quarters, he could write each kid’s name on the front, write “From: Lucas” on the back, add some stickers and boom. Done. And I wouldn’t have to spend a penny… but oh… oh how I paid…

It started off well enough. We decided he would start by just writing the “From: Lucas” part on each card. I assumed that he would just get into a rhythm and be able to slam through them pretty quick.

Oh no.

He finished three… three out of 21… before he started complaining.

This is going to take forever!

My hand hurts!

How many do I have to do? I don’t want to do any more!

I tried a different approach. I thought if he could focus on writing each individual child’s name, then perhaps that would distract him from exactly how long it was taking. It worked. He got through five (out of 21!) before the whining started again. And, now that we were writing his classmates’ names, we inevitably got to a couple who he believed shouldn’t get a card at all because I don’t like her! and He’s mean to me! which meant that I had to explain that everyone gets a card and you have to be nice and fair even if someone isn’t nice and fair to you. 

As we painstakingly moved through the list, each classmate on the front, “From: Lucas” on the back, I got closer and closer to completely losing my shit. It turns out my darling 5-year old is a passive-aggressive little jerk. He started deliberately writing huge and sloppy. Or pushing the marker so hard that it left those big blotches behind. Or deliberately copying the names incorrectly. At first, I tried scolding him and telling him to be neater, but eventually I decided I really didn’t give a shit. These were HIS valentines (er… friendship cards…) after all. I wasn’t going to do it for him, so if he wanted them to look cruddy, so be it. And let’s be honest, they’re just going to end up in the trash after Friday anyway.

Once we got to the sticker phase of production, Quinn was glad to help out so we managed to fly through. All in all, it took TWO HOURS to make those goddamn cards. I sat them both in front of “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2″ with their dinner and drank a couple of beers in order to soothe myself.

I realized something, too. That even if I had gone to Walmart and bought a box of those premade cards, I still would have had to suffer through the process of him writing them all out. At least they’re done. Just in time for school to be cancelled tomorrow and most likely on Friday due to the impending snowpocalypse.

I need more beer.

The cuteness of this photo belies the agony of this process.

The cuteness of this photo belies the agony of this process.

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One Response to “be mine”

  • Comment from Deb

    I enjoyed making cards with my mom when I was little. Now I wonder how much she enjoyed it . . . and how I’ll feel when it’s my turn! (I’ve got to try at least once. With beer on hand.)

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