Tuesday, October 30, 2012


I've had a giant circle punch for years. I bought it when Gavin turned two to make dot streamers that I hung in the trees in our little yard outside our apartment in lieu of traditional birthday garlands. He loved them. They twirled in the sun and were just a great backdrop for our festivities.

I still find uses for the punch at the weirdest times. It's not something I would even think to list on "great tools to have if you're a parent" but it should be in my top five. Really.

Around five years ago we had a spare Christmas tree. Instead of leaving it packed up I decided we'd use it as our blessings tree and put slips of paper recording what we were thankful for on the branches. Again out came the giant circle punch and I kept a stack of circles handy. I even invited friends to write what they were thankful for and put them on the tree. It was fantastically amazing to see all those wonderful ideas and memories add up. I saved them for years and at Christmas I'd put a few on our regular tree.

Enter a few days of complaining and frustration. I've been more frustrated and short tempered with back problems that have flared up and I think the stress of Sandy hitting the east coast has upped the kids stress level. We're planning on visiting family in just under two weeks and the kids are concerned that where we are going is flooded or covered in snow. Thankfully neither is true but with the news making it sound like the entire US is under water I can understand their concerns.

Time to change things up.

Today, just before lunch I got out the circle punch and some card stock. I punched six circles and asked them to each write/draw three things they were thankful for.

G's were illustrated but meant: being born, Fi being born, and family. I wrote their names and the date on the back and included a translation of G's drawings on his disk. Now what to do with these? Honestly I have a million ideas but for now I need something simple that can easily be upgraded. In my stash of bits of things I have some super soft wire I can't use for anything because it's just too soft. I decided to make rings from it to attach to the paper circles. 

Then add them to some scrap yarn and hang them across the doorway between our living room and classroom. 

I'm hoping that we can revisit this a few times a week and keep adding disk. Honestly I'd love for them to weigh enough to pull the yarn down and require me to work it over again. My dream solution is branches with these hanging off in an old crock I moved here from Tennessee. 

Since doing this the house has been quieter. Everyone seems a little more relaxed. I think this might have been exactly what we needed today.

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