The Day I Realized My Mother Isn’t Normal…

My mother has often told a story about life with her three sweet children. She would say, that when she was pregnant with my sister she drank out of a pink cup and she got a girl!
When she was pregnant with my brother she drank out of a blue cup, and she got a boy!
But when she was pregnant with me she drank out of a monkey cup… yes, I was “THAT child”. πŸ™‚

It is true; from a very early age I’ve always been a little quirky and filled with a lot of energy! My overactive imagination was constantly keeping my mother on her toes! Thankfully she was up for the challenge! One such episode took place when I was 5 years old. Halloween was just around the corner and my teacher announced that the students could come to school on halloween dressed as anything they wanted! My little mind was swirling with ideas! I quickly settled on an idea that I thought would be THE COOLEST costume ever!
I would dress up as the colour purple!
Yep, you read that right.
Maybe my Mom should have focused more on what was IN that cup she was drinking from while pregnant with me! πŸ˜‰ Kidding!!

Maybe not a “typical” halloween costume, but creative none the less. My Mom got to work sewing a glittery purple get-up and spraying my hair with temporary purple hair paint!

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That’s me in all my Purple Glory!

The love for creativity and crafting runs deep in my family! Actually when I was a baby my first word was either “glitter” or “glue gun”…I can’t remember. πŸ˜‰

It took me a while to realize that my Mother wasn’t a “normal” Mom. The first few years of my life I thought that everyone had big magical birthday parties with beautiful homemade cakes! I thought that every Mom wallpapered their daughters Barbie house and filled it with homemade furniture and hand sewed Barbie clothes. I thought that every girl spent the weeks leading up to Christmas watching their mother hunched over the sewing machine custom making a special Christmas dress (and a GIANT hair bow to match) I thought that every child’s Mother built a treehouse in the backyard complete with real hanging curtains and carpet. I thought that every child had a stack of scrapbooks their Mother made to document the family vacations and special events. I thought that every girl’s Mother would hand make them a “Little House on the Prairie” costume in time for the school field trip to the Heritage Village. I thought that every child’s Mother would pull over if she saw someone had put a piece of furniture at the curb, throw it in the back of the van, and take it home to paint and “dazzle” it up!

Then…I started to notice that these types of things were not ‘normal”. My Mother had a flare for using her creative crafting skills to make everything extra special and meaningful! The crafting gene was passed on to both my sister and I. We love to cruise around Pinterest to look for special projects to create!

Pinterest can be tricky. People seem to either love it or hate it! While Pinterest is a crafty person’s “happy place”, I also know a lot of people who think that crafting is only reserved for people who have WAY too much time on their hands!

In fact, I was just chatting with a craft-loving friend of mine the other day. When I walked into her house she was sitting at the table with her children putting the finishing touches on some shark puppets she had just made with them. I was complimenting her on doing such a fun and creative activity with her kids, and she began to tell me how much she appreciated the compliment and how she’s been feeling like she needs to keep her craftiness on the DL these days! I asked her what she meant by that, and she explained how often times when she has posted a photo on facebook or someone has seen some of the crafts and projects she’s completed with her kids she is subjected to backhanded compliments and snide comments. She said people will often say things like

“Oh there you go again, making us “regular Moms” look bad”,
or
“Boy, you obviously have too much time on your hands”,
or
“I knew you made this because only YOU would go over the top like this!”

She said that she actually feels judged by other Moms for doing crafts and special projects! She doesn’t do it to show off or to show others up, but simply because she really ENJOYS each project! Well, she’s certainly getting no judgement from this Mama! I love crafting too! Aside from the pure enjoyment of it- did you know that it’s actually GOOD FOR YOU?! That’s right, it’s good for you in an “an apple a day…” kind of way! πŸ™‚

#1- Crafting is good for the wallet! It is a way to achieve something unique and special in an affordable way! TIME IS MONEY! If you are willing and able to take a little extra TIME to make something as oppose to BUYING it, you can save a ton of money! I love doing big, special themed birthday parties for my kids! I’ve often heard the question “How much did you SPEND on that party?!”
That is the beauty of crafting! You can stretch every dollar so much further if you are able to make things instead of purchasing ready made kits from the party store. For example you can purchase these 5 pack pre-made tissue flower decorations from Michaels for $19.99

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or I made 10 of these for $3!

 

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You can make your own decorations to look the same as what you will find in a party store (or even nicer) and for much less money!

#2 Crafting is therapeutic. More and more research is being done to discover the mental and emotional benefits of tapping into your creative side. In an article recently published by CNN called “This is your brain on crafting”, Catherine Levisay a clinical neuropsychologist has said;

“There’s promising evidence coming out to support what a lot of crafters have known anecdotally for quite some time, and that’s that creating — whether it be through art, music, cooking, quilting, sewing, drawing, photography (or) cake decorating — is beneficial to us in a number of important ways.”

The article goes on to explain how crafting is now being used to treat those with anxiety, depression, anger management problems, and dementia. Crafting works as an anti depressant by causing the body to release Dopamine. Crafting and being creative actually MAKES YOU FEEL BETTER! It actually makes you HAPPIER! And all these years I just thought it was the fumes from the Elmers Glue…kidding! πŸ™‚ The article explains it this way:

“The reward center in your brain releases a neurotransmitter called dopamine when you do something pleasurable. Scientists believe dopamine was originally designed to make us repeat activities that would help the species survive, such as eating and having sex. Over time, we’ve evolved so that the brain can also release dopamine while we’re staining glass or decorating a cake.
Dopamine, in and of itself, is our natural anti-depressant,” Levisay says. “Any time we can find a nonmedicinal way to stimulate that reward center … the better off we’re going to be.”

You can read the entire article on the benefits of crafting at:
http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/25/health/brain-crafting-benefits/

So tonight after you get home from work, or get the kids to sleep, why not change into your comfies, plug your glue gun in and start releasing some Dopamine! πŸ™‚

I hope you have a wonderful, craft project filled week!

XO, Pam
www.cleanlifehappywife.com

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6 thoughts on “The Day I Realized My Mother Isn’t Normal…

  1. I love seeing what you do with parties and DIY, I think it’s you pouring love out on others big time and if others judge that, too bad….but I say that knowing I’m all for going all out, especially when you’re celebrating – and really life is worth celebrating.

    1. Thank you Tammara! I agree that most crafts projects are a labour of love! I think some of the best gifts you can give people are things you make yourself as well as creating experiences that make people feel special! Thank you for reading the blog! πŸ™‚

  2. Kristin! Yes! I was JUST thinking about that the other day! That’s something I haven’t tried yet so I think it could be super fun! AND the most fun part will be doing it with YOU! πŸ™‚

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