Each month a group of moms from my church get together for an evening of activities. We do a potluck-style dinner and have some of the teens from the congregation watch the kids while we visit and listen to a speaker or presenter. This month I was asked to do a craft project for our recent meeting. FloraCraft provided the three inch Make It: Fun foam balls for us to use for our project. I led the moms in a make and take following this tutorial for no-sew quilted pumpkins and rambled a little bit about my blog.
I knew that not all the ladies in the group were “crafty” so as I was preparing for the presentation I started to think of ways I could make a night of shoving fabric scraps into styrofoam seem like something that was worthwhile. Moms are busy people, and hobbies can seem like an extravagant use of time when you are living a highly scheduled life. In the grand scheme of things, crafting shouldn’t be a priority. Knitting is not found anywhere in Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs. But crafting IS actually good for you. The science backs me up.
Good for kids: Sometimes I sit my kids at the table with a pile of craft supplies just to get them out of my hair for an hour or so. But crafting is more than just a way to stave off “I’m bored!” syndrome. This article discusses the many ways in which craft projects enrich a child’s development.
Good for your brain: There are multiple studies that show that crafting helps to alleviate stress, anxiety, and even some chronic pain. This quote from a CNN article about these health benefits nailed one of my favorite parts of working on a craft project.
You know that what you need to do is possible to do, even though difficult, and sense of time disappears.
I worry that I am not parenting my children well enough. I despair over the endless cycle of laundry. I feel helpless seeing all the violence on the news. But when I am working on a project, I know there will be a beginning, a middle, and an end. And that is immensely satisfying.
Good for friendship: Crafting doesn’t have to be a solitary hobby. Look up sewing circles, knitting clubs, or craft classes in your area and you are likely to find friendly people with whom you already share a common interest.
Not all the ladies in our MOMS groups are crafters, and I probably didn’t magically turn any of them into craft enthusiasts over night. But we did have fun chatting, laughing, and creating together over some foam and fabric. And that’s good for everyone.