Letting Go of Perfection
Once upon a time there was a little girl whose mom was the craftiest person on the face of the earth. Her mom did every imaginable craft with her kids. She made clothes, made her own Easter candy, heck she even made (pretty good) imitation Cabbage Patch dolls during the craze in the ’80′s when you couldn’t find a Cabbage Patch doll to save your life. That girl has the best memories of all the things her mom used to do with her and her siblings.
Of course the only problem is that those memories also include what is probably one teeny tiny inaccuracy. In her memories every project was absolutely perfect. Everything looked exactly as it was planned, no errors or imperfections. Of course, that surely wasn’t the case. There is no way that every single project was done with perfection and without mishap. When that little girl grew up, those memories of perfection prevented her from attempting projects of her own with her kids.
It’s hard to let go of the perfection hang-up. Luckily, I have a friend who helped me do that. For Jack’s birthday, Michelle made these for him to take to school. I never in a million years would have attempted to make them myself. I mostly watched Michelle, but as she worked she said a couple really important things. One was to remember that the cupcakes were for three year olds. As long as the cupcakes mostly looked like Cookie Monster, the kids wouldn’t care. The second thing that she told me was to let go of the perfection. Sure, Cookie Monster doesn’t have to be perfect but neither does anything other project.
I took those words and chewed on them a bit and since then, I’ve let go of the perfection. I’ve realized that every project that my mom did wasn’t perfect. I remember it being perfect though because as a child, it WAS perfect. It was perfect that my mom cared enough to make me a doll when there were none available or that she took the time to sit down with three kids, glue, and glitter and make wreaths. The memory was perfect, not the actual end result.
I’ve started doing some projects with the boys. And a few more on my own. I made Turkey Cookies for Jack’s Thanksgiving Feast at school. Last night I made Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Cupcakes for the Christmas party in Jack’s class (lest you think I ignore Xanny, his parties are more low-key. He gets awesome stuff like Ritz crackers to take for his friends). It was another Pinterest find. As soon as I saw it, I knew that Jack would love it.
The cupcakes weren’t terribly difficult to decorate. It took about 45 minutes to decorate 24 of them. Now that I’ve let go of the need for perfection in my projects, it was so much easier. It didn’t matter if the eyes weren’t perfectly spaced. Or if the antlers weren’t exactly the same. All that matters is that when I showed them to Jack he jumped up and down and said “Mommy, they are BEAUTIFUL!”
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