I Felt So Awful Doing This

I could hear the little footsteps approaching, and I frantically started shuffling papers in the recycling bin. I had to make sure that what Isaac had just given me, wasn't visible. 

Isaac: "Mom, what are you doing?"

Me: "Oh, nothing sweetie, just have to take out the recycling!"

As he walked away, my heart sank. What would I have said if he had caught me? 

It really was beautiful - a bright yellow sun with a giant smile, green waves and lines that represented grass. Stick figures that represented him and I, my eyes were so big and my hair so long in that picture - my goal length! (I've been growing it out for what feels like forever).

As beautiful as it was, I did something to it that at the time, made me feel like the worst Mom on earth. No other Mom could possibly be as cold hearted as me! I wondered if I was alone. 

I had recycled my child's art. I got rid of it, threw it away. 

But let me explain; I have so much of it! It's on the fridge, it's taped to all our bedroom doors and mirrors. It's also in the stairwell. It's stacked on our bookshelf and well, I love it all but I had to draw a line. 

It took me a really long time to get over the guilt of getting rid of the art my kids make. But I did, by coming up with some solutions.

I came up with ways to organize their beautiful creations which allow me to recycle the rest with a clear conscience. I'm sharing them with you:

1- All art created for special days (birthday/Mother's Day/Valentines Day etc) gets a date written on the back and stored in a special box (plastic bins work too) assigned specifically to holiday creations.

2- 'Firsts' (first self portrait/picture of family etc) or pieces that I just fall in love with get hole punched and put into a binder.

3- Sometimes your kids will make something that you know will look amazing in a frame. Head over to Ikea! You'll find affordable frames and hang them in your child's room, the bathroom, on a picture shelf...kids love seeing their work on display and it's a great personal way to decorate your home. 

4- The rest are in rotation on the fridge until a new piece is created and takes its place. Previous piece is recycled.

That's all, nothing fancy but it works!

-Amber

 

Amber Saleem