As a craft blogger, I rarely do a personal post, but this time I’m making an exception. I’m letting you take a look behind the scenes at what really happens at our place. This is part of a “Mothers day behind the blog” series. For more revealing insights into just how imperfect us “Mom bloggers” are, visit the links at the end of this post. For now, I’m going to tell you about me.
Recently I read this insightful article on Huff Post Parents. I empathise with the article, but it makes me a bit sad that bloggers and Pinterest are being blamed for putting pressure on mothers to be perfect. I had no idea my craft posts could make people feel that way, which is why I’m letting you know a few simple truths about our craft blog and our lives behind the blog.
Truth #1: Our house is usually a mess:
I don’t like mess, I hate it. It makes me feel like I’m not doing a good job if my place is not clean, but having a clean house all the time means cleaning up 24/7 and I have other things to do. Not only is the house usually a mess, but there are often several baskets of washing waiting to be folded and ironed in the corner of the living room, with another 3 hanging on the line waiting to be taken in. This stuff is boring and mundane so I just don’t blog it, but when you see an image with a tidy background in my blog posts the chances are I’ve either a) retouched or cropped the mess out or b) kicked the mess over to the other side of the room so you don’t see it in the picture.
Truth #2: We have plenty of crafting “Fails”
Some crafts look cute and perfect on my blog. That’s the aim, but I also post kid-made crafts that are sweetly imperfect. Some crafts take several attempts to get them to actually work, like this Cockatoo Pencil Tin, which had rust stains on the felt the first two times I made them. In the picture below you can see sticky, yucky failed “wonder dough”; flubber that turned out more like old, hard chewing gum and a jelly (jello) mess that was more like soup. We re-did the jelly idea and posted it later but the other two are still on “the list”.
Truth #3: Every image I post is retouched in photoshop:
Every. Single. One. If there are scratches and dirty marks on the craft table (and there are!), they’re usually retouched out. If the kids have peanut butter on their faces that I’ve neglected to wipe off, it’s retouched out. If the colours are dodgy, I fix them up. Not one single picture on my blog is un-retouched, sorry to burst your bubble.
Truth #4: I usually don’t get out of my pyjamas until at least 10am.
I’m not lazy, just too busy getting the kids breakfasted and off to school or pre-school in the mornings, and then I need a coffee before I can seriously think about starting my day. Luckily for me, my husband can usually drop them off at school on the way to work.
Truth #5: Today I haven’t brushed my hair.
I just plain forgot, and I rarely wear make up. If I did, I’d probably get an allergic reaction.
Truth #6: I’m ALWAYS late
Truth #7: We are a screen-loving family.
I’m often on the computer, and my kids watch their fair share of television.
Truth #8: I dislike most of the things I post. To me, they’re just not good enough.
Truth #9: My kids whinge plenty, and I sometimes lose my patience.
I wish they wouldn’t, but they do. I wish I didn’t, but I do. The best piece of advice I’ve ever had on parenting is that it’s completely unrealistic to expect our kids to behave well all the time; to sit still in cafes, to eat all their vegies every night without complaining, to do everything you ask them to immediately when you ask. It just doesn’t happen, and if it did there would be something not quite right about that. I don’t expect them to be angels all the time, and I have to give myself the same concessions. I believe one of the major lessons in life is that we need to accept everybody despite their shortcomings, even ourselves.
Truth #10: Despite the mess, chaos and clutter, being a mum is the best thing that’s ever happened to me.
Daily I count my blessings. My kids are not and never will be perfect, but I love them the way they are. I will probably never love my own crafts. For certain, I am not and never will be a perfect mother, but I can handle that and relish in the same small, every day moments that all mothers do. Like this one, typed as a quote from my four year old and sent home in an adorable, wonky popsicle stick house. It’s staying on our messy, craft-covered fridge door fridge forever.
It says: ” I love it when Mummy reads me ‘The FarawayTree’ on the couch in the lounge room. I do her hair and she gives me a cuddle. I love her out to space and back again”
Truth #11: Every day is precious
Today, I came across this very sad story of a mother who lost her little boy. My heart goes out to her, and I would like to take the opportunity to share this beautiful quote on motherhood. Ryan’s story might bring you to tears, but it is real and he was real and it deserves to be told and his life remembered. Read about #a red balloon for Ryan and see how you can share his story.
“You will never have this day with your child again. Tomorrow they’ll be a little older than they were today. This day is a gift. Breathe and notice them; study their little faces and little feet and pay attention. Relish the charms of the present. Enjoy today, mama. It will be over before you know it” – Jen Hatmaker
To all of you regular, imperfect mothers who are reading this today, have a happy mothers day – you deserve it!
For more stories about just how “un-awesome” bloggers are in real life, visit these blogs on Mothers day, 11th May 2014:
And Next Comes L | 3 Dinosaurs | Hands On: As we Grow | Kids Play Space | Life Over C’s | Makeovers & Motherhood | Not Just Cute | One Time Through | Play DrMom | Southern Girl Ramblings | Still Playing School | Teaching Mama | The Chaos and The Clutter | The Craft Train | The Educators’ Spin On It | The Measured Mom | The Mommy Talks | Third Stop on the Right | This Reading Mama