As a parent, my kids often come home and tell me something they need for school.
Last week it was beads, rubber bands, and paper towel rolls to make instruments.
This week it’s shoeboxes to decorate and Valentines to pass out on the 14th.
My mind immediately went to store-bought Valentines. I showed my daughter some choices with the theme she wanted and promptly added them to my “cart.”
But as the total approached $30 for 30 Valentines, I slammed the brakes and deleted the cart.
Instead, I drew 30 hearts on printer paper, cut them out, and gathered paint.
I was honest with my daughter and said $30 on Valentines was too much. I told her we could paint hearts instead.
I anticipated some whining, but was surprised with an elated “yippee” as she gathered paintbrushes and got to work.
We worked side-by-side painting hearts red, pink, yellow, and green.
We carefully dried them all overnight. And today she signed her name on all of them and admired her creation.
Clicking “add to cart” and “submit order” does not provide the same thrill she felt creating those valentines.
It is far too easy to consume, consume, consume. Yet, some of our greatest joys come when we create.
When I make something I feel a sense of pride. When I save my family money I feel a sense of industriousness and frugality.
That brief fear we may feel about having the “right” thing or the “cool” thing will wane when we hold something we made or something we repurposed.
After the success with my daughter, I found free printable valentines for my son and two random containers to repurpose for valentine boxes.
Out the door our valentines (with candy) for 45 students and boxes will cost $10.
Create and repurpose—avoid unnecessary consumption.