We are in the process of replacing our kitchen cabinets. It was an unexpected project, but it seems the last owner of our house decided on custom designed cabinets but chose them to be made of particle board. We were fooled by the solid wood doors which looked pretty but the rest of the cabinets were not proving to be sturdy enough to hold up against our crew and their need to be consuming food at all hours of the day and night.
In order to prepare for the new cabinets to be installed, I had to empty all of our old cabinets. I have been thankful for my craft room, as it ended up being the perfect staging area for the entire contents of our kitchen. And as we are nearing the end of this renovation project and I am beginning to load things back onto the shelves they belong, I thought about the most perfect baby shower gift for my daughters, and my son's someday wives.
I've given handmade blankets, bibs, toys and pillows. I've even painted custom artwork for friends welcoming their first child home. But until I was putting away my little tea cups and saucers just now, I realized the gift that I need to give to my children (and grandchildren of the future).
A tea set with a broken tea cup.
Yep, a perfectly flawed broken piece of china.
Because I don't want my children to miss having a tea party with their little girls and boys out of fear. Fear of a spilled cup of tea, or being worried about chipping a fragile porcelain cup or breaking a saucer. I don't want them to wait for their baby to be old enough to cautiously navigate the process, and end up waiting so long the child no longer wants tea. I don't want them to be controlled by perfectionism. Like I was. Like I sometimes still am. And miss out on so many precious moments.
Come to think of it, I may make them a little basket of goodies, like a jar of dirt, a rollie pollie or two, and a dandelion flower.
The dirt to remind them no matter how much they clean, there will be more dirt, but they may not get another chance to play Sorry or Candyland on the living room floor. The rollie pollie to remind them to explore outside, squeal with their child over the discovery of this little animal that can be walking one moment and be rolling away the next. The quirky little bug is a reminder to use those moments to spark a love for the Creator of the Universe who knew how much happiness a poop-eating transforming bug could bring to a young child. A dandelion flower for them to practice being delighted by the simplicity of life seen through the eyes of a child. I've too often complained about the soft yellow weed presented to me by a child with eyes aglow, so proud of their treasured gift, because all I can think about is how that gift meant there was an unwelcome guest growing in my well-manicured lawn. I may or may not have been known to say, "If you really love Mommy, you'll bring the roots too next time." And now I wish I had simply said, "Thank you," and given the child a hug.
And tomorrow, I think I'll make my children tea and ask them to see if they can scrounge up any dandelion flowers to decorate the table. I'm still navigating the complexities of this parenting thing. Do you have any "unique" gifts you would want to pass on to the next
generation? Do share, I feel like I'm throwing myself a Mommy shower.