My kids patience with me taking photos has been VERY limited. The photo above was the best I could get in the 3mins they let me take photos of them modeling the service craft we did. She must be saying something to him in Tagalog cause he looks confused.
The service craft is a card holder. You make the card holder and write 10 cards or however many you want to the SAME person. The idea. Say you know someone who is battling cancer or some other disease or ailment. Or just anyone you want to shower with love or you know is having a hard time in some way. We are sending one to my grandma who lives alone and stays pretty busy but I know she gets really lonely. I don't live close enough to her to be there and give her a hug and hang out very often. So when she feels the sky is looking pretty grey she can pull out an instant ray of sunshine to push those clouds away and pull in some sun. You can also tell the person to hang on to the card holder so you can replenish it when it's empty.
Also if you don't feel like you can write 10 cards to one person - find small cards, cheating? Not if you are a person who isn't long winded like me. Just find a card size you know you fill up.Put your favorite quotes on the cards and share why the quote lifts you up. Tell them about how they have helped lift you in the past. Or just share fond memories the two of you have had together. Write a joke you know will really make them LOL.
In my head as I pictured how this activity would go with my kids I imagined me imparting to my kids the true value of service and how it makes us and others happy. Yeah...well it didn't go that way. I procrastinated putting this post up because I felt like I failed. But I know it's better to try and fail then not to have tried at all. My husband told me I didn't fail but I still kinda feel like I failed. I know they must have gotten something out of it...right? I know I learned a few things like what was I thinking my kids can't write yet, which makes it harder to do the important part, writing heartfelt cards. Yeah I can fill them out for them which I planned on doing but they also have a hard time really thinking about the person in a meaningful way. I am one of those parents who looks at toys and the age will say 8+ on the box and I will think oh...my 3 year old will totally love this, and I am wrong %90 of the time. This is one of those moments. Here is what I would do differently
-Pick a time when kids are the mellowest during the day or do something to help them focus or mellow out a little.
-Do the activity in 3 parts, you know your kids and if you think you can bust it out in one shebang go for it.
1) make craft
2) Talk to your kids about people you are writing cards to, and discuss service and why you do it and when (I did my best at this). Take a break, a few hours a day whatever works for you.
3) come back and write cards.
Making the craft
1) Glue scrapbook paper onto card board.
No he's not playing air maracas he is pounding the paper onto the cardboard after he glued it on.
2)Cut scrap book paper out that you glued to cardboard with razor.
3) Paint card pockets. We used acrylic paint which took two coats of paint. I think spray painting would work great but I am not letting my 5 year old do that. The card board bends really easy so either measure out how big you want it to be and then make your folds or cut a small box that already has the folds (where the flaps are) so you don't have to measure it all out.
Here's my theory, we are all bipolar kids just don't know how to hide it like adults. Two pictures below taken within a few minutes of each other.
4) Glue card pocket onto scrapbook paper with hot glue gun. Glue trim or ribbon on if you want to fancy it up some. I think it would be cute to glue a pom pom trim around 3 sides. Depending on your kids ages they will be able to do more or less of this craft. Some kids may enjoy using a Silhouette this is where it could come in handy, it would look much better to print out what you want it to say. As you can see my hand writing isn't great, maybe I should just tell them Zaya wrote it. Which I would have had her do if she had wanted to. If I were smart I would have done this with my talented scrapbooking friend Misty. If anyone does this project I would love to see your completed work, upload it onto The SIP project Facebook page so I can see it, please :)
5) Make a stand for the back of your card holder and glue on with hot glue gun. Attach ribbon with hot glue to keep the cardboard stand from sliding out.
Your done with the craft!
I also thought I would share a game my husband used to do with his family growing up. This was great to do while paint was drying. It's called Don't Eat Pete! Take a bunch of M&M's and put them on the table. Have one person turn around so they can't see the candy. Pick an M&M and name it Pete. Have the person turn around and start eating the M&M's one by one. When they pick up Pete everyone yells DON'T EAT PETE!!! It's easy and the kids love it!
My daughter is looking up at my husband wondering if she has Pete.
The next day. My son was being super cooperative when it came time to write cards. Zaya got frustrated with the writing part. I had her practice on paper before she wrote it on the cards. I know the biggest thing is to keep trying, learn from my mistakes and don't give up. Teaching my kids about serving others is not going to happen all in one moment it's consistently doing for others and involving them that is going to have the biggest effect on them. I wanted them to have a good experience so if they got upset I didn't try and force them do finish it. I don't want them to associate frustration with service. When they get a little older I can do more to persuade them to finish what they start, at least that's my thinking.
I hope you found this post helpful in some way. I WILL be doing another post for SIP Summer Camp this week. It's already planned out and ready to go :) Also spread the word about SIP Summer Camp via Pinterest or Facebook or whatever I have no motive other then to get people serving others.
If anyone wants to do a Dish & Serve post (follow link to see an example) please let me know. You know you want to!