Five Minute Sanity Break!

Lately, I have found myself feeling very unmotivated. My time off has been spent in staring at computer screens for hours, not working, not connecting, not accomplishing anything. It has become habitual rather than purposeful. The result is a fuzzy mind and a general bit of malaise.

The thing is I *know* how to fix this. I have learned enough to know that I respond well to writing, yoga, meditation, art and creating things.  However, knowing is not doing. The doing is the hard part. Disconnecting from the internet long enough to write something on what is, at the moment, just an internet machine, or hauling out the old Singer seems more like work than a cure. So how to overcome this?

With a five minute craft, of course! Something so simple that will give me that sense of satisfaction I crave without having to plan my entire day around its execution.

I work (as many of you know) at a magical land called Spoonflower as a printer. This means that I see literally thousands of gorgeous prints every week. When a print catches my eye, sometimes I will order it in a fat quarter, even though I have no plan to make anything out of it. That is how I ended up with a piece of performance knit printed with Poppysplashes in my house.

It occurred to me that this print was beautiful enough to display on its own, without making it into anything other than what it was, a piece of art.

So five minute craft time: I took a medium sized embroidery hoop and fastened the fat quarter inside of it. After tightening the outer ring, as you would when using the hoop as normal, I simply trimmed off the excess fabric and I had a lovely piece to brighten up my living room.

craftIn actuality, it took less than five minutes to accomplish, but I think I took a minute or two just to admire it hanging on my wall so I will count it.

Crafting is one of my soothing balms. It makes me happier whenever I finish a project and it spurs me to greater action. This is one of the many tricks I have learned, it isn’t about just doing the stuff that makes you feel good, it’s about finding the stuff that makes you feel good AND motivates you.

I have a few more projects that need to get started and I think I will start on one right now.

Cheap, Fast, Non-Ouchy Lightsabers

In our house lightsabers are not a privilege, they are a right. If you are a child born into this family, you will one day receive one. Both of the young ones have your standard issue plastic, retractable model kind of like this one:

They look great, they are fun to carry attached to your belt and flick out at a moments notice and they are the cheapest official version you’ll find in stores at around $9.

However, they do have a drawback – one that generally becomes apparent after ten minutes of battle has played out. Inevitably, there will be a wailing, “Mooooooooooooooooom!” emitted from the basement from a child nursing a stinging limb from being accidentally whacked for real.

Too often lightsaber battles end with hurt feelings, tears or at worst bruises.

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Craft or Craft Not, There is No Try.

Have you ever wanted an AT-AT planter? Or a Jabba the Hut body pillow? Prices of Star Wars stuff got you down? Have several hours to kill with your young Jedi?

Worry not.  The Star Wars Craft Book is here.

Filled with kid-friendly projects, this book will erase the dread of being stuck inside on raining days for months.

First order of business: make an Admiral Sackbar puppet from a paper bag.  It’s a SACK!

 

Folding Paper Fun

Looking for a fun way to spend an afternoon (or the next million years) with your kids? Try downloading some of these free character patterns from Cubeecraft. They’re pretty cute and definitely beat the heck out of paying twenty-five bucks for something you might have to assemble anyway.

There’s also an amazing (and growing) variety of characters to choose from. Maybe your little ones would like to spend their free time plotting the conquest of Guilder. Or liberating the Ood. Or maybe they’re like my kids and want to relive their favorite moments from the stoner-activist classic Super High Me.

Vaporizer not included

 

I think we’ll probably be giving the Star Wars figures a shot first. We’ll let you know how it goes.

The Children Have The Phone Box

Or rather the child.  Meet the luckiest little Dr. Who fan in the world.

Zachary Smith woke up on his fifth birthday to find a life sized TARDIS sitting in his backyard, the handy work of his father Lee, a.k.a. the coolest dad in the world.  It took him two weeks to build.

If you’re considering trying to get in the running for coolest parent ever, you can find construction plans here.