We honestly didn't know what to get Samantha for her birthday, so we didn't really get anything. I think that may make us sound like bad parents, but sometimes we can be a little blinded by being too close to her on a daily basis. All we see is a child who doesn't play much with toys, who doesn't like to color, who has no penchant for music whatsoever, and who lives for her books. Sure, we could get her books, but we also hoped to be showered by epiphanies about actual toys she might actually want.
But we weren't.
As I stood in line one day at Ross, purchasing a pair of pink sandals for her (which later proved to be miles too big, but for $7 I don't mind waiting until she grows into them), famished because I'd missed lunch and was forced to
drool over look at rack upon rack of seemingly delicious bags of organic chips and popcorn with fancy and enticing names lining the path to payment, I saw a shelf of inexpensive boxed activity sets. But Samantha totally doesn't like activity sets or arts and crafts, right?
I suddenly revealed to myself my own faulty logic in coming to this conclusion. It's not that she doesn't like them, it's that I don't like the mess or the need for organization and patience that generally comes with them. I can sit her down in front of a craft, give her instructions, and let her have-at-it, but I'll invariably become a bit cross as she does something wrong, spills some paint, over-glues an object or somehow manages to do something other than what's expected by the makers of said craft, which then leads to her own frustration, which then leads to her refusal to do anything, which then leads to me, in a huff, packing everything up and vowing never to bring it out again until it can be done correctly.
Okay, so I exaggerate a tiny bit... It's really not so awful, but she really doesn't have the staying-power for some of those things and would rather go and do something quicker or easier.
So it was with an enormous amount of ambition that I, still waiting in line for my turn to pay, began to fondle a box containing a weaving-loom-pot-holder kit. Remember those? I loved the sense of accomplishment at actually having made something really, really cool, by myself. But could my kid do it?
I highly doubted it, a sentiment echoed by my husband when I got home with the box that would likely end up at the bottom of a closet for the next few years. And again, for $5, that was a risk worth taking, and at the very least, she'd have something from us to open (in addition to a small toy that Daddy had picked up the day before).
Yesterday, I returned home from work to an astonishing sight - fine motor dexterity at it's absolute best being displayed by Samantha who was creating a pot holder masterpiece.
On. Her. Own. (after being instructed by her aide, who started it off for her)
We were floored. She did an amazing job, not needing any supervision until she completed the task and handed it over to me to finish off the edges.
Trust me when I tell you I will treasure that little blue and white pot holder forever.