My two year old is super creative. Nothing stops her. Her media and canvases are unlimited – from the mundane (crayons and paper) to the eccentric (her own body and toothpaste).
You know those countless pinterest posts with cool (and often impossible) craft ideas? You don’t need to be that overly-crafty parent in order to foster creativity. Just draw with your kids to create the art spark, and leave art supplies (really basic ones like pens and paper!) in an accessible location. Seriously, that’s it. You don’t even have to be artistic.
You, too, can have an artistic two year old…
A quick introduction. Here she is!
This about sums up my 2 year old @melissaswhimsy
Red Crayola Chalk DOES NOT come off with Magic Eraser. In case you’re wondering:
Wall art by a 2 year old @melissaswhimsy
The door to Mom and Dad’s room. See!?
Lots of Faces by a 2 year old feauturing red Crayola chalk (which does NOT come off easily) @melissaswhimsy
This is what Mom looks like after scrubbing walls:
More Wall Art by the Two Year Old @melissaswhimsy
We named this one Gerry:
Two Year Old Wall Art (we named it Gerry) @melissaswhimsy
She writes. In cursive!
Two Year Old Wall Writing @melissaswhimsy
And, finally… herself as her medium:
Dear Esteemed Sitter of my three young children:
Two Easy Rules for Babysitters
Thank you. Thank you for giving me a few hours of peace. Away from the Mom-Alarm. Away from the mountains of laundry. Away from my two year old’s wall and body art. Thank you for giving me some uninterrupted time to connect with my husband – away from the ADHD that is parenting three little ones. Even if I only slept for four hours last night, at least I can relax for just a teeny bit.
There’s just this one thing. Okay, two.
1. I don’t want to come home to kids who are awake. Not even one still-roused child. It’s not cute. It’s not funny. It’s not “oh well!” It sucks. I want them to all be asleep. I don’t care if their feet are black, their teeth aren’t brushed, or there are small animals in their hair. I just want them horizontal. Because after a few hours of no demands, I don’t want to play mom again until the next morning. I get that you don’t get it. You probably don’t have a 2 year old who constantly draws on every possible surface, including herself, a 5 year old who manages to leave half of every meal on the floor, or a 7 year old who needs to be reminded every 3.5 seconds to do her homework. You probably don’t understand that “good days” mean you got a shower or got to complete two consecutive sentences when speaking with your partner. That’s why I’m giving you this simple rule. Kids. In bed. All of them.
2. If my kids are asleep and you have been watching Bravo for 2 hours, their dinner dishes should not be visible. They should be in the dishwasher and their kitchen mess should be cleaned up. Look, I’m not asking you to clean the house. But putting their dishes in the dishwasher and washing the one pan of mac ‘ cheese (don’t judge) that they get for a treat when we go out isn’t asking for much. And, yes, I’m asking for it.
And here’s my Grumpy Old Man story: when I babysit, for $5/hour, I felt like I needed to earn that money. So, when the kids went to sleep, I did just that. I cleaned the entire kitchen – often consisting of several days’ worth of dishes, put all toys away, and straightened up. Then, I watched TV. I’m not asking you to do all of this. I’m asking you to place, in the dishwasher, three small plates, three cups, assorted silverware, and to complete the washing of one pan. This should comprise approximately 10 minutes of your time at my house and then you can watch Bravo to your heart’s content.
(p.s. I love my children and I love being their mom. And they don’t get mac ‘n cheese that often.)