To The Moms: Just Stop It

Writers note:  While most have found this piece helpful and uplifting, some have been offended by it.  If you get to the bottom (or even just mid-way through) and find yourself wanting to punch your computer screen, please read my apology.

I got home after midnight from a business trip last night. That’s probably why I didn’t notice it until the morning. This bag. Alone. On the kitchen table.

Moms bag

Normally, getting my kids to the breakfast table is like trying to coax a couple of cats into a swimming pool. As soon as they wake up, they hide under blankets on the couch and make strange noises. But this morning was a different story.

Audrey came out of the bedroom, wiped the sleep from her eyes, and went right to the table. She sat in front of the bag with a smile on her face.

“What’s the bag for?” I asked as I created my super-duper breakfast parfaits. Colorful layers of yogurt, fruit, and cereal.

“We got it for our end-of-year party yesterday.” She reached into the bag.

“What did you get?”

She started pulling out different items and commenting.

“Goldfish crackers… Some cookies… ooooooh! Gummy worms! And a mustache!”


The morning went on as usual, with me reminding the kids to brush their teeth, make their beds, and get a summer job. (Note: “I’m only seven” is not an excuse.) We finally made it out the door and walked to school as a family unit.

When Gabby and I got back home, I tidied up the breakfast mess before getting to work. When I reached down to pick up all of the things that Audrey had removed from her bag, I did a double-take.

moms all goodies

moms fish

moms worms

moms orange

moms cups

Every single item was accessorized. Little notes. Ribbons. Sayings. Like a professional stylist had just prepped them for the red carpet at some weird awards ceremony for pre-packaged snacks.

Follow me on this one. I truly appreciate that people have taken so much time to make sure my child felt important yesterday. Craftiness is a gift. One I do not possess. I am awestruck by the flawless execution of cuteness on these snacks. And I realize the inherent hypocrisy of my statement, since I am guilty of adding a bit of “flair” to the breakfast parfaits from time-to-time.

But for some of you, it’s exhausting, right?

As the man who is married to the person who reluctantly put googley eyes and a graduation cap on all the fruit cups, I feel I am qualified to offer this sage advice to the mothers of the world who do this kind of thing through gritted teeth out of a sense of obligation.

Stop it!

Just. Stop. It.

Here’s a theory for you. There’s a type of person who actually enjoys doing this kinda thing. She sits whistling in her craft room, making little doo-dads out of marshmallow fluff and fairy turds while bluebirds flit about her shoulders — and she’s having fun. Meanwhile, all the rest of the moms are like:

“$#!+. That f’in party is tomorrow, and I gotta’ come up with something cute for the kids, cause you know Susie Craftsalot is gonna’ make the Taj Mahal of lemon bars. Here, let me just slap some googley eyes and some construction paper on this fruit cup and call it good.”

So now we’re all working to impress Susie Craftsalot, hoping to measure up. All the while, she doesn’t give a flying unicorn fart what we made.  Not because she thinks she’s better, but because she’s honestly, genuinely surrounded by the intrinsic joy of making creative stuff. That, or she’s too damn distracted by the little field mouse she trained to ride a unicycle to deliver her handmade, end-of-year teacher gifts.

Whatever the case, for most of you moms out there, the competition is all in your head. And so is Susie Craftsalot.   Some folks love to do this kinda’ thing, and that’s totally cool.  But if it’s not you, then don’t try to be something you’re not. Because the results of our endless impress-a-thon are not good. A survey of 7,000 women show that their average stress level is 8.5 out of 10. Nearly 50% report suffering from “Pinterest Stress” – not feeling crafty enough. And three out of four say “the pressure they place on themselves is worse than any pressure or judgment they get from other moms.”

I remember when crackers used to be enough. You probably do, too. Can we get back to that place, please? Deep down, we know we’re not doing it for the kids. They couldn’t care less. My daughter didn’t even notice the adornments. But she did appreciate the snacks.

And you know what? No one will judge you for bringing a box of Chips Ahoy. Or an unopened bag of string cheese. And if they do, why do you care? Pardon my fit of cynicism here, but we spend far too much time and effort worrying about what others will think, forgetting that most don’t even notice.  And those few who do are likely too self-absorbed to be a true friend to you anyway.

So stop it. No more worrying. No more needless effort.  No more made-up competition.

Because oranges are enough.

Cookies are enough.

You are enough.

* Enjoy this post?  For more, just preorder Scott’s book about his family’s Year Without A Purchase on Barnes & Noble or Amazon launching August 4th from WJK Press. And, to see more posts like this, submit your email at the upper right to receive new blogs hot n fresh to your inbox.  Or, Like us on Facebook.  Cheers!


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539 responses to “To The Moms: Just Stop It

  1. adifferentkindabeauty

    Oh my WORD! I am hollering Amens over here! Thanks for the witty and honest writing. This mama of four is most appreciative. Keep the posts rolling!

    • Mary Pelkey

      AMEN! I have been saying this for years! We left a school last year–a private school–where we were required to do fund raisers. They had gotten way out of hand–everything was a project! And then the teachers sent home projects for the kids for homework. We did it for 13 years and finally last year I reached a breaking point. We moved over the summer and switched to public school. Everything is so much simpler! We went to a family fun night the other night and they just had a storytime and people there from the library to sign up library cards and an ice cream bar–that’s it! At the old school we would have been there for hours preparing bc we would have to set up a water slide and cotton candy machine and snow cones and finding people to man each thing. I kept saying it was too complicated–no one listened–and we got burnt out! We def need to make things simpler again!

      • Bruce

        I find it disheartening that so many dread doing little crafts for their children. Maybe everyone is too busy with their jobs to take a little time to bring a smile to a child’s face. Most of you working go through great pains to make sure a presentation is perfect or go the extra mile to please the boss but are unable to find pleasure in doing something special for your children or their friends. I, for one, enjoy the smiles on the faces of the children after spending a little effort for a party. It is not a competition but showing that you care by taking the extra time to be special to your children. Do you think that the child with the bag would have been as excited if it was full of apples and oranges?

  2. You’re a great Dad! Those M&M’s would have disappeared if they were in my house…
    On point as always. Best to you and the crew there in Nash-Town.

  3. Alice

    Live and let live!

  4. HAH

    Hallelujah …I’m saying while I wave my glue gun burned fingers in the air!!!

  5. Charlie

    I agree – the time you spent crafty your creations could have been better spent snuggling your own child and reading a book – which will they remember more (& you for that matter).

    • m

      How do you know the crafter didnt do both the crafting, hugging the child AND reading the book?

      • Amen, “m”! All of the time it took you to be so negative must make you unhappy & the rest of us sad. Sad you think you have your “career” that brings you home late & in a “rush” to get everything done not even noticing what your child even brought home! Sorry for how your schedule works against your life of the women who enjoy doing what they do for the school., that need & asks for room helpers because the school doesn’t have the extra money & help! Hope you have a chance to think about how you really sound to others. We all live only once-maybe you could rethink that while you’re sitting there selling your book!

      • Yes agreement with M too this commentary comes off salty, please don’t categorize us all with you. Perhaps you are lashing out at that which you are void of in yourselves, its always for our own growth and learning so embrace it rather then fight it, you will find the transition much smoother. Meh..opinions, everyone’s got them. To Craft or not to Craft that is the only real quintessential question here

      • Julie Krawczyk

        Exactly! I’m the mom doing these things, truly loving it, my kids love it, and they are well loved and never neglected to make these things happen. Most of the kids in our area don’t have parents who care what they do, so they feel so special when all that effort is spent on them. The bottom line, it’s all about perspective.

      • J

        Yes because the “crafter” as you call it was out to make all the other moms look bad. I realize you tried to make it sound ok to be the crafter but you insulted me anyway. Maybe my joy comes from things and making kids happy. I don’t expect everyone to do it , it takes all kinds of different people to make the world work so stop putting your guilt on me.

    • JH

      Oddly enough mine craft with me… or does that not qualify as your quality time to remember

    • B Madson

      I am “Susie” and when my children were young I hugged them often maybe even more than they wanted, I took them to the park and actively played with them, in the summer we went to the pool and swam together, they had friends, play dates and were well balanced children, they grew up into responsible college graduate citizens. I don’t require a lot of sleep and I enjoy crafting. Please don’t judge that a crafter has to one up someone else, I do what I do and don’t care what others do, I enjoy my crafts, my family and my life. Not only that I work full time and have 2 jobs WHICH I LOVE AND ENJOY!

      • Melodee

        I think you are awesome! 😀

      • B Madson,
        My husband and I spent a lot of time doing the same types of activities with my children as you did. No regrets. They are grown single men and we have precious little “together” time these days. The memories we made with them as children are forever. I now work and enjoy not having to get anyone ready for the day but myself. 🙂

    • Sandy

      This comment actually upset me a lot. I was a stay at home mom of 3 sons. I was lucky that I didn’t have to work. We tightened our belts a lot to make that happen. This was what I needed to do for me. I volunteered at all three schools my kids were in (3 separate schools until my oldest was a senior and the next one was a freshman) by being room mother, PTA Treasurer, Vice-President and President, book fair, bake sales, fundraisers, teacher appreciation day, helped tutor kids with reading on a weekly basis, etc. I also did the school directory, monthly calendar & newsletters, invitations, as well as volunteering at church. My husband coached or assisted with soccer, basketball, baseball and led/assisted in confirmation classes. We snuggled with and read to our kids every night and we played together all the time. My crafting, which I truly enjoy by the way, was done when they were in school, in bed or outside playing with their friends.

      I am not, by any means, a super mom. I don’t know how women (or men) juggle work and family. I couldn’t do it and I respect those who do. I am, however, very good at multi-tasking. My whole point to this little rant is that my children did not suffer for lack of my attention. They are all grown now, and they remember, everything we did together. I love crafting! It is not a competition and I never expected others to do the same things. They have their own things. I do it because I enjoy it and I can. It’s also a little ego boost to me when I got/get compliments and requests to do things for people. I need to stay busy and it helps with that. My grandmother used to bake (I cook, I don’t enjoy baking. I was glad when we couldn’t bring homemade snacks to school), among other things, my mother sews (I hate it), my sister decorates cakes (I can’t do it and don’t like to) as well as other things and her daughter scrapbooks. It’s just something we do and have always done. Family comes first, and there’s nothing wrong with crafting. Kids can be included if they want. It’s my hobby. Do you participate in and/or watch sports or have other hobbies? It’s good for our children to see us doing other things. So your assumption that our crafting takes valuable and precious time away from our children is all a bunch of hooey.

  6. I don’t have children. I attend grade school in the 60’s. I don’t recall getting ANYthing at the end of the year party. Wait. We didn’t even have end of the year parties!!
    This business of craft this and craft that came up in conversation yesterday. Why is it everything has to be a production, something worthy of going viral, for pity sake!

    • Stacie

      Because some people enjoy the attention it garners. Others do it because they enjoy it and the rewards they get(smiles from the kids, etc). I have a great friend that does these sorts of things & she is really good at. Her kids & all the kids that are recipients love them. However, she has never tried to shame me for not being that way.

      Julie K, your comment about mist if the kids I. Your neighborhood having parents that don’t care about what they do really sat wrong with me. Just because I am too busy to be crafty doesn’t mean that I care any less. I work 50+ hours a week. When not at work I am busy getting her to her activities.

  7. I am the crafty person who enjoys this kind of stuff so STOP being a party pooper……no not really, I understand what you are trying to convey. Apply the KISS principle…….know that one? 😉

  8. Amen brother! I’m all for being creative and I do not want to deny anyone the self-expression of creative craft but I get hung up on people making all this cuteness then sitting around with no effort given to connecting with the very kids or parents you are firing up your glue gun for. Let’s connect people, let’s share our love for our kids in conversations and connections over crackers or Chips-Ahoy! Let’s give these beautiful kids a full-on, eye level smile and high-five. Let’s notice the ones who’s parents couldn’t get out of work and make it. After all – we are modeling the behavior we want them to learn. I’m happy when my boys are crafty – but I’m overjoyed when they are brave in love!

  9. Thea Rudesal

    I appreciate the truth of your words, truly I do but I don’t think they are enough. Somehow we need to reach into the minds of children to help them understand how precious and unique each one is. I bless my mother who spike strongly against comparing ourselves to others. She told us that there would always be someone better and someone worse in any given subject that our “job” is to be and do our best. But comparisons are hard to step away from. Particularly in women as we questions called upon to do and be so much.

    So thank you for your words but teach us to train our children. Teach parents to never hold up a “stellar” child up to other children. Teach parents to prize individuality. That’s my prayer

    • Jenna

      Individuality is all well and good until your child gets out into the real world with jobs and responsibilities, and they WILL be expected to be better than their counterparts. The “everyone is an adorable little snowflake who deserves a trophy no matter whether they won or lost” is a DANGEROUS precedent that I hope goes away. There’s nothing wrong with telling a child they did a great job no matter what. Trying hard is worth praise! But if EVERYONE is treated equally whether they crossed the finish line first or not, where is the incentive to ever do better? If I’m great “just as I am,” why try harder? Their future bosses aren’t going to give a flying fig if they “tried hard” and not compare them to the other guy who did better. Just remember that while you’re instilling your individuality into your kids.

      • Jennifer

        I don’t think Thea is saying children shouldn’t be taught to try hard. I think she’s saying that children should be taught to try hard with the goal of being *their* best, not with the goal of being better than someone/everyone else. That means taking stock of their own strengths and weaknesses, their own interests, and – dare I say it – their own uniqueness and individuality. No, every child should not get a trophy for everything. But neither should getting a trophy or being better than everyone else be the goal or the primary measure of success. If anything, that encourages children to do only the easiest tasks that they know they can accomplish rather than challenging themselves. If I’m good at math but bad at soccer, I’m not going to bother with soccer because the amount of effort needed to be the best is going to be much higher than the amount of effort I would need to be the best at math. I’ll just do the math, take my math trophy, and leave soccer to someone else.

        As for the working world, rarely do jobs involve a direct competition between employees, and rarely is there a single “best” employee against whom all others are measured. Employers usually have a set of standards they are looking for. As long as you meet those standards, you keep your job. That’s not like saying that everyone who starts the race gets a trophy, even if they don’t finish. But it’s also not like saying that only the fastest person gets a trophy. It’s like saying “everyone who finishes the race and runs at least a 10 minute mile pace gets a trophy.”

  10. Tiffany

    I am the furthest from a crafty mom, but I appreciate the moms who have that gift and want to use it. Just because I buy store-bought cookies, doesn’t mean I need to have animosity toward the mom who does spend the time to put googly eyes on oranges. I think the real problem is the mom who doesn’t have that talent or want to, not because she can’t or won’t do, but because there is the need to make sure no other mom “shows them up”. I appreciate blogs and social media, but it is ruining parenting. Who cares what other moms are doing and how it makes you feel. Do your kids love the googly eyes on the oranges, yes, does this mean they look at you as an inferior mother because you don’t? Not at all. So moms, for the love of all that is good and holy, stop focusing on yourselves and how all these social media posts, or blogs or pintrest make you feel. Focus on raising kids who don’t have to look to googly eyed oranges to get their self-worth as parents someday. Celebrate the moms with glue-gunned fingers, and be thankful they are your kids room mom 🙂

    • Holly Whipple

      Thank you Tiffany! Well said! From a mom who gives end of the year gifts and loves doing it!

    • Jenna

      WELL SAID, Tiffany!! The internet was barely in its infancy when my son was little, and as he got older, it never occurred to me to read blog posts about parenting. I talked to my mom or other moms I knew. The fear I would have felt from all this! PUT DOWN THE MOUSE rather than the glue gun!

  11. I think it all comes back to intention. If your intention of dolling anything up, is out of love and that time during the dolling is like a prayer for each little darling…. then its all lovely. truly.
    If the intention is one to compete or one to receive praise… then you perhaps you need to put the (glue) gun down and take a few steps back to discerning what going on with you 🙂

    • Sandy

      sonshine, I agree with you up to a point. Yes you should do it only if you want to and you enjoy it. Not because you have to. That’s why I do it. But there’s no reason not to appreciate a little praise either. It’s a little bonus to what we do. It’s the cherry on the top.

  12. Amy Baggett

    Scott, you are my hero for writing this article. The craziness of PTA moms is why I “retired” “from the PTA when my youngest started the 4th grade. When I am 80, my only regret will be not having quit sooner.

    I think someday a hundred years from now there will be a living history museum somewhere where kids will learn about PTA Mom culture and paper handicrafts and they will hologram one another the emoti-elf for “That is some seriously messed up sh-t. Worse than the Victorians and their human hair wreaths.”

    • Mia

      Oh those wicked PTA moms. PTA’s bring in much needed dollars to schools. Books, supplies, uniforms, playground equipment, field trips, carnivals, spirit wear, scholarships for children who need help, etc. Be so thankful that you escaped that madness and pat yourself on the back while you make make sweeping judgments about a group of people who work their butts off, not just for fun little papercrafts, but for the good of all students, staff and teachers. How do I know this? I’m a teacher in a school that is blessed to have many PTA moms and DADS who make a huge difference in our daily lives.

    • Caty

      Wow! That’ll teach your kids something -quitting PTA because of crazy moms. What incredible backbone it takes to leave all that enrichment and fundraising to others. Good thing your own kids never benefit from all that crazy work those parents put into your school. You certainly showed them.

  13. Heather

    I think we should quit judging others whether they do or don’t do. If it is some people’s talent and joy to be crafty then leave it alone. As long as nobody expects it from those not willing then it’s all good. It’s like telling the overachiever in math class to quit answering all the questions (we get it – you are so smart) – let’s let people be who they are and pay better attention to being happy with who we are – not who we aren’t 🙂

  14. I’m laughing, chuckling, laughing, and feeling so good about myself as I didn’t get into that trap. Perhaps it is because I had five children under the age of 7 or whatever. Best i could do was cut their names into hot dogs before I fried them. However, this didn’t win any prize at school. however I did spend two days reading aloud to Mark’s second grade the :”Jonathan Livingstone Seabull.” Perhaps a few BRownie points for that but a great remembrance for me.

  15. My curiosity makes me wonder….did this come from the teacher?? Maybe a bunch of volunteers each assembled a few and them put them together?? Maybe it’s not so bad after all? 🙂

  16. Chazz A.

    There are plenty of kids who browse Pinterest and it is very possible that kids picked out some of these things and DEMANDED that some poor, overworked parent just had to make them for the whole class or her/his entire social life would simply be RUINED! Nay, not just for the FIRST grade, but the shunning would continue unto the SECOND grade as well.

  17. Aaren

    I’m so tired of write ups shaming other moms for making an effort. Just like the post complaining about moms playing with their kids at the playground instead of sitting around talking. We all have our strengths and weaknesses. If you don’t want to do it then don’t and stop trying to make those feel bad who do.
    I personally used to have a creative job that I had to leave for my special needs child. The only creative thing I get to do now is make valentines and end of the year gifts. I couldn’t care less what others do. Stop comparing yourself to others.

    • cam

      Seriously! Not your fault that others don’t know how to time manage. If they had a calendar, then they wouldn’t be up at 2 am putting things together. And why should we have to stop being an active parent just bc someone else can’t or won’t. Not our fault. We do what we do bc we’ve our kids.

    • I think his point is that many parents feel forced to do this. No parent should feel pressured to perform in an area in which they don’t feel skilled or enjoy. Not wanted to create these types of goodies for 20 kids who happened to breathe the same air as their own kid for 180 days does not mean they aren’t making an effort. The writer’s point is that using whatever skills they naturally possess is enough.

      • Rachel

        I have to agree with that. When a woman is rating her “Pinterest stress” as an 8.5 she’s not doing this because she loves it, she’s doing it because she thinks she has to. If you love it then continue to do it. If the whole thing makes you want to pull your hair out in frustration then please stop. That goldfish bag is headed straight for the trash anyway, no one is judging you for deciding to forgo the stickers and cutesy saying this time.

  18. Nx3N

    I see the problem is that it all sets the bar too high. This is only the end of 1st grade for goodness sake! As this continues, what will our children expect by the time they get to the end of 12th grade?…or how disappointed will they be when they don’t receive the “strokes” or “gifts” as they get on in school? It’s not just the pressure on the moms that should stop, it’s also the over-exaggeration of empty praise on the kids.

    • Momma Sue

      ABSOLUTELY! Things like this is what starts the “ENTITLEMENT” mentality. It seems rather minuscule but will get out if hand quickly. Don’t get me wrong, I am all for praise and congratulations on doing a job well done, but when does it end? How far should you go? Whatever happened to having Play Day at the end of the year and getting a “sack lunch”? Why turn everything into a celebration? I didn’t have that and I feel I have been pretty successful in life. My children didn’t have it and both have successful careers – one as a lineman, one as a teacher. The concentration or focus should be on providing a safe, loving environment where our children learn moral values, manners, and common sense. That is what will create productive members of society.

      • Jenna

        It’s going to be pretty disappointing for these kids when their future bosses don’t give them a special trophy or a party for finishing a project or turning in a report on time, isn’t it?

    • Sandy

      I don’t get it. How is this setting the bar high? A little gift bag at the end of the school year is no different than Halloween or Valentine’s parties. Those don’t continue past elementary school and I don’t see kids getting upset over that.

      You finished 1st grade now you’re going into second. Our school report cards were handed out to us on our last day of school which said the same thing.

      Don’t forget to read during the summer. I enrolled my kids in the summer reading program at the public library.

      Have a great summer. Every teacher says that on the last day of school.

      I don’t get how this is empty praise. And I’m against trophies for participation and undeserved praise for every little thing. I didn’t raise my children that way.

  19. Loving the dialogue! Thanks for all of your comments. I especially love that it hasn’t developed into name-calling and personal attacks. I would love to reply to each one individually, but alas, gotta’ go bathe the kids. That said, I am all for the crafty moms out there. If you love it and it brings you joy, by all means, go for it! And to those who involve their kids in the project to teach creativity, that is some super-mom stuff, right there! My apologies if that got lost in my rant. But this was really aimed at those moms who somehow feel inadequate if they are not gifted in the same way, or who fail to get the same joy from it The mom who is currently hot glue-ing something through gritted teeth at 2am for the party tomorrow morning, feeling like she won’t measure up or pull her own weight or will somehow be seen as “less than” for simply wanting to bring a bag of chips. Or herself. Again, you are enough.

    • Deanna Lauer

      As one of those moms who loves the creativity and will spend an extra hour looking for that perfect Pinterest idea, I do it for the moms who do not have the time or the desire to be the crafty mom. As long as the kids appreciate it and they feel as if they are special, one parent can be the representative for the group. I get many thank yous from the parents and they know they cannot do it but appreciate those who can. I like to do it. Let me do it and don’t feel that I think any less of those who don’t.

  20. cam

    Not a fan of this. The lady was very ungrateful for the time that others put into the thoughtful end of the yr treats. just bc u don’t have time or aren’t creative, doesn’t mean u shouldn’t appreciate what others do. She acted like others are trying to shoe her up. Not the case at all. I guerentee when the moms made the snacks, they weren’t thinking how much they hope others are envious. No, they are thinking of the kids and how it’ll make them happy. I mean, if u don’t have time, then go to the store and buy cupcakes with grad hats on them. Boom, done. :)….Also, making things doesn’t take away from spending time with your kids. You have them help you or you do it yourself when they’re in bed.

    • Perhaps you missed this portion of the original post?
      “Don’t get me wrong. I truly appreciate that people have taken so much time to make sure my child felt important yesterday. Craftiness is a gift. One I do not possess. I am awestruck by the flawless execution of cuteness on these snacks. And I realize the inherent hypocrisy of my statement, since I am guilty of adding a bit of “flair” to the breakfast parfaits from time-to-time.”

  21. Lawdy. These negative ‘open letter’ style parent-to-parent blog posts get me feeling so disheartened.

    There are so many ways to be a great parent and something all parents can hold hands around is acknowledging that it’s not an easy job (for those working long hours and late nights to those that do it all as SAHM’s or SAHD’s).

    It would be nice if parents could lift each other up more.

    Applaud the parent whose creative talents and time invested led them to create something children love. Celebrate the parent whose long hours at work enable them provide for their families.

    To me, posts like these sound like anger and defensiveness clothed in sarcasm. They reiterate a message we all feel at times “I’m not doing a good enough job”.

    WHERE’s THE LOVE, parents? We’re all in the same boat here.

    • Agreed. I am not a crafty Mom, but feel I provide other gifts to the world. Sounds to me like a jealous parent. If you don’t want to do the same fine. Stop complaining about the ones that do! What an annoying post!

    • kristeen rayment

      Amen sister

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  23. SaB

    why so bitter? Who cares if other moms want to do something extra?!!
    Let them! That means we don’t have to… doesn’t mean we have to step up our game…it’s NOT a competition… kids know how super busy I am with other activities and they know how much I love them- I show and tell them every day.
    Let uber crafty moms be who they are and get over it.

  24. Lei

    Get over it, some moms enjoy doing this kinda stuff. I am not one of these moms, but I am thankful someone takes the time. The world is made up of all kinds so why be so mean. Onece your kid gets 3rd or 4th grade this kinda stuff stops, so please don’t be a hater. They are only little once, let everyone have fun and enjoy.

  25. I grew up in a generation where you didn’t receive “goodie” bags after a birthday party. I applaud the creativity of folks and see your point at the same time. I actually chuckled as I read your post which is why the goodie bags came to mind. To each their own.
    The duplicity of some of the comments make it equally amusing to read.

    • Carrie

      I know what you mean about the “goodie” bags at children’s birthday parties. They were unheard of when I was growing up as well. The ones my daughter received were filled with flimsy little toys that didn’t last long. When it was my turn to throw the party, I compromised with sending home something useful-the sundae glass the child used during the party, or the individual teapot used by the guest. I have one (adult) friend that still uses her teapot often-nearly ten years later. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that even if something is “expected”, use common sense. I just couldn’t see spending money on flimsy, throw away toys simply because that was what everyone else was doing. As the mother of a special needs child, I had the skills, but not the time to do elaborate invitations and matching goodie bags. So I made simple invitations on the computer, and sent home useful gifts. It worked for me.

  26. armada

    Ok women, now we can finally be relieved of all our stresses! A man told me to simplify my life and not get too stressed out by Pinterest! Wow! Now as free women, we can just go back to our stupid gender roles and browse Pinterest guilt free!!! This is soooo cute!!!

  27. I am not crafty, but I appreciate those who are. Why do we uncrafty moms, or working moms with no time to do all this feel like we have to tell people to stop? They haven’t told me to quit my job and learn to be crafty. This is their gift, and we need to let them give it and say thanks for sharing. Yesterday, I showed up at the school with my store-bought cupcakes for the cake walk at the spring fling. I used scissors to cut the containers into the right sized prize. Left the cupcakes in the store package, but cut in half. That is the extent of my craftiness. No one complained or told me to go put graduation caps on the cakes. I certainly would not tell them to remove their embellishments.

  28. Paula

    There’s no need to “graduate” year to year anyway, let alone have a party about it.

  29. Reblogged this on Just Me – Leena and commented:
    This is sooo good! “You are enough.”.

  30. Fifi

    This is super cool! Excep they would be officially 5th graders!!

  31. Helen

    we all have our talents, how and when we share them is up to us. I read in this; be yourself, don’t try to outdo others. if you have the time and the talent use it for whatever you feel called to use it for. if it is to lift up someones day with a bit of special attention to their snacks, or if it is a smile and thank you for all you do. but don’t stress out trying to be someone you are not.

  32. Lynna

    I agree with the lady who said DON’T stop doing it if you are stopping because you feel pressure not to be “that” Mom. I AM crafty and proud of it…I also was only blessed with one daughter (other than my older step son whom I did not get to be that involved with) so I want to make the most of each experience with and for her…I want to make special memories because I won’t have that next kiddo coming along to do it for. Be careful not to judge so harshly… you don’t know that person’s circumstances or motives.

  33. ksimpson0122

    I’m not very creative and don’t have much time for it anyhow. However, to each their own! I love that some moms love to do this sort of thing and have the time to do it. I don’t have animosity toward them. Live and let live. Bashing something that someone does as a kindness to others that they enjoy doing is honestly a total dick move.

  34. DId none of you notice what he said about the kid? THE KID DIDN”T NOTICE THE CRAFTINESS OR THE INSPIRATIONAL THOUGHTS. She only noticed the candy. Candy is enough to make the kids happy. They rarely NOTICE all the over-parenting that goes on. Thank God. Know what I did instead? I taught my kids to cook their OWN snacks for school events and have a competent feeling about themselves and their OWN efforts, not mine. Maybe a little more of that would bring this mom-comepetitiveness to an end. We’re raising small people to become big people who can do for themselves, not hothouse flowers that will wilt the minute they get out from under our “loving” care. Maybe we should remember that.

    • Carrie

      I just have to make a quick comment. I would have been the kid that noticed the cute packaging and would have been reluctant to destroy it to eat the goodies. Just because most of the kids noticed the candy first, doesn’t mean all of them did. Without going into personal details, I was also the kid that had to teach myself to cook. While I appreciate that you raised your children to be self-sufficient, please don’t assume that every child has the same family background, and that no child appreciates an extra act of kindness.

    • Sandy

      Just a little comment on something I noticed. You say we’re raising small people to become big people who can do for themselves. Crafting is DIY. One could go out and buy the same thing, but they chose to do it themselves.

      I also have a niece who was going to elope because they don’t have the money for a big expensive wedding. So with the help of a couple of aunts and a couple of other family members, we are using our crafting skills to do her invitations, flowers, wedding cake, reception food, etc. so that she can have the wedding of her dreams. And, of course, she’s doing a lot herself. She just finished making her own centerpieces and now onto the next thing. I don’t see any negatives here.

  35. Doc

    Being a teacher for 28 years now we have to think about all children. There are children in our classrooms who do not receive positives of any kind in their homes. I am sure the teacher who took the time to put this snack bag together was thinking about all of his/ her students knowing that some of them may not have a lot to go home to. This act of kindness from the teacher may be the one thing that helps them get through. Not all children will ignore the messages. These messages may be the only positive they ever get.

  36. Jan

    NO! I will NOT stop doing/making “cutesy” things for my children, my friends, my co-workers! I do just because I WANT too – I could care less what you do or think! I will NOT judge you if you do not do the “cutesy” thing.

  37. Rebecca Smith

    You know, I almost didn’t do an end of the year teacher gift and was self conscious about the little gifts I gave to my little boy’s preschool friends because of a condescending comment made by a mom with similar feelings as yours. She actually said, “(Curse world), get a job.” Little does she know, I woke up in the wee hours to finish those little crafts and I didn’t do them because I give a flying flip about what the mom’s thought. I did them, because I knew it would bring joy to my sweet little guy to pass out the $1 paintbrushes and joy to his sweet little friends to receive them. I have three small children and a husband who coaches a college sport and is gone most of the year. I am tired, and offen feel like a failure. When I can have a little “victory” like these little gifts, I am proud of it.

    Why don’t we take the stand to not tear each other down as moms, even if “in jest.” I have worked since I was 15, and until five years ago when I stayed home after the birth of my second son, I have worked sixty hour weeks in salary positions. I would often dream of staying home, imagining a life of Pinterest worthy projects and relaxation. But it’s hard to stay at home with three small children. We sacrifice a lot, but for our family, it’s worth it.And since I’ve been one, I also realize it’s hard to be a working mom. There are all kinds of moms, some crafty, some playful, some frumpy, some well put together, some organized and some not. But we all love our children and we all need encouragement. Why don’t we build each other up instead of tearing each other down and make life a little easier instead of more complicated?

  38. Grammy

    God gave us different talents. Celebrate yours; be happy for the others. He did this to give order to the world He created>

  39. Pete

    Ha ha, love all the passion on here. I’m *completely* with you on this issue. But I also can hardly draw a stick figure let alone create anything “cute.” Here is the key quote for me: “…we spend far too much time and effort worrying about what others will think, forgetting that most don’t even notice. And those few who do are likely too self-absorbed to be a true friend to you anyway.” For all of us people pleasers this is a good reminder, whether its about crafts or your athleticism or how you look or the size of your paycheck, how nice your car/house is, etc etc. We should work as unto God and not as unto men. And for those who are genuinely doing it because they love it, well great they are probably doing it for God, but for the rest of us, as you say…stop. It’s for freedom we were made, not to be slaves to the comparisons of others about this kind of thing.

  40. Laura

    Wow. Why are you making something that was for your child about you, your emotions, your feelings of lack even? It’s a bag celebrating your child, for your child, about your child. Move out of the way and allow your child to celebrate and feel good that someone is creating this for them. I actually thought you were going to mock the celebration bag for simply moving into second grade or feel guilty that you missed the ceremony for your child’s moving up day. I commend you for even being at breakfast after a business trip where you arrived home so late. Maybe try simply allowing a teacher or parent to do what they are best at or enjoy. This feels like a whole lot of mockery and anger about something so trivial and seemed to bring your child a moment of joy.

  41. As a first time visitor of your site, I never would have guessed you were a missionary. This article is critical, judgmental, inaccurate and all around unkind. No where do I see the spreading of God’s great Word.

    First off, moms don’t do these things to compete. They do them because the kids find joy in it. My kids feel proud they have a mom that goes out of their way for them to do something really cool. You’re an adult, you’re not supposed to like it. My seven-year-old is. Her seven-year-old friends are.

    Everyone, including you, wants to talk about how there is no connectivity. How I’m wasting precious time with my children. Do you look inside my home? Are you peeking through my windows? Because if you were, you would see us gathered around the table, all participating, having fun together making things. Things that are silly to you, but fun to them. Sure I can “connect” with my kid, but I prefer to show them how to make Love Bugs with yarn and felt and googley eyes. I’ll stick with showing my son how to sew. I, personally, don’t think him wanting to make his Nana pillow covers is silly and pretentious.

    As for the “connecting,” we manage to squeeze that in too. Believe it or not, time management is easily done. Bed time is for books. My kids love to read chapter books together. We are anxiously awaiting the release of the third book in the “Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children” series. In the meantime, we are plowing our way through the “Jacob Wonderbar” series.

    Needless to say, I won’t be coming back here. It was a fruitless venture. Your idea of spreading the Word of God and mine are two totally different things.

    1 Thessalonians 4:11

    The Mother You Belittled and Made to Feel Less Than

    • Jenna

      If that’s really what you took from this article, you should spend a little more time on your own reading comprehension. Your defensiveness smacks of someone who finds personal judgment in every word they read. Do you have something to feel guilty about? Probably not, but it sounds as though you don’t feel worthy for some reason. If you really want to “spread the word of God,” you might start by learning to love yourself and not finding judgment and negativity in everything you read.

  42. Sharon Lovoy

    This YouTube video echoes this and demonstrates how we are raising a generation of teacups who are too fragile and over celebrated.

  43. Gail

    Scott-I couldn’t agree more. As one of the ‘not crafty mom’ variety (and one who hates glue and anything to do with sticky…I’m with you!

  44. This is freakin fantastic!!!

  45. Michele Schultz

    It’s sad that something that was done to make your child feel special, you turn it around and put a negative spin on it. I can assure you that while this person was making these , you were not on her mind. Only your child! We all have different attributes to contribute to society, why let your insecurities ruin this genuine gesture? In a world where people are body shaming and bullying, your no better for shaming this person. Be a good role model for your children, teach them that although this may not be your thing, you would love to perhaps chaperone a class trip. Stop the Bullying!

    • Jenna

      BULLYING??????? I am flummoxed at the interpretations of this article. I can only imagine what frightening nuggets of “truth” you interpret from the Bible.

  46. People… As with most things in life, people are only reading/seeing the portion they want to and not the whole. This man is trying to make a point on the whole culture that been created around these crafty gifts. He actually says he admires the talent that crafty people have. I do not see him attacking him at all in this article. What I do see him question is the culture that has developed that “shames” the parents who don’t have the time and/or talent to create these masterpieces. He is trying to bring up the question of why can’t those who don’t enjoy making these items just sent in the fruit cups undecorated. He mentions being up at 2am unhappily gluing on googly eyes because it is expected. If you enjoy it, by all means do it! But somehow we have to end the shaming culture that has evolved. I do not see that he was trying to shame you who enjoy crafting, but trying to request sympothy for those who feel obligated to do this rather than something they would more enjoy more like quality time with their child. As a mom who enjoy crafting, but with too busy of a schedule, I have felt the pressure to “meet the bar that has been set” and it has resulted in lost time with my child, because I didn’t have time for both. I have also made the decision to put the time with my child first, and then been guilted because I didn’t contribute a cutesy project.

    Moms (and dads) both sides need to stop guilting the other for EVERYTHING! I think this author only brought forth one issue out there. Those taking the defensive before reading the whole thing, please take time to read through. He even posted a response later apologizing if people took it the wrong way. I think some people took offense first, and then had a blind eye. He praised the crafty. Just not the shaming culture around these end of the year treats. Overall, parents need to just stop judging each other. I know my family. I don’t know yours. Thanks!

    • Jenna

      AMEN!!! I couldn’t have said it better myself. The “pick and choose” interpretations of articles like these always burns my toast, but I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. It happens all the time. I don’t think the author should have even bothered to apologize for people “taking it the wrong way.” These kinds of blogs, on every subject imaginable, are going to elicit responses where people cherry-pick the thing to be defensive and upset about. It’s called “victim mentality.”

  47. Liz

    Spoken like a true man. Gifts should come from the heart- if to don’t want to do a a treat for kids then don’t. It is that simple. If you live in the south gift giving is an art form meant for someone to enjoy and that is all. 🙂

  48. craftymom

    The thing is the kids that don’t have crafty moms probably aren’t craft liking kids as much as those kids that have crafty moms. I do what I do for my kids. My kids would be the ones to come home and notice every little bit of effort another mom put into something and it would mean a lot to them. But that’s because they share my DNA. If it’s not your thing don’t do it. If it is embrace it and go for it. I don’t jump all over the moms with super balanced lunches that they pack for their kids, I’m a PBJ kinda mom. But I should be allowed to draw silly faces on my ziplock and not be judged for it. Guess what if your kid really doesn’t care and notice then they aren’t going to notice and be upset my kid has it. It’s ridiculous to be told I’m wrong for wanting to be crafty. I would love to help someone do something crafty for their kids in exchange for them doing something I stink at for mine. We should all stand out in our own way and let our kids know if you have a talent then share it. We aren’t all one profession then why should we all just do the same things for the kids. Someone who’s good at sports is ok to come to school on field day and teach kids how to play kick ball then why can’t I come to school and do crafts on a holiday or make super cute cookies to celebrate my kids birthdays. If it’s not your thing and it stress you out but your kids enjoy it call me I love doing it. Let me call you when my 10 year old wants to run marathons and I look at him like he’s nuts. Run??? Is the ice cream truck coming? Then WHY? Does it mean I don’t want my kid to be exposed to running or see it as an option? Absolutely not. Be who you are and let me be who I am. I won’t pretend I can run a marathon and you don’t pretend to enjoy cutting small pieces of paper for hours and hours. We all have different talents and likes. Let our kids know that’s ok and show off your own talents! Then they can feel good about showing off theirs and being who they are!

  49. Pam Mitcham

    Some of us work, still like to do crafts for our kids (and WITH our kids) and still snuggle up with them and read a book and tuck them in and says prayers together and sing them goodnight. I don’t judge anything that comes home from school with my daughter or son. I’m just grateful someone took the time to remember them, whether it’s plain or all covered in glitter and fairy farts. Maybe that’s what we should all do.

      • Amy

        And others choose to write in a blog. You could have (gasp) made something crafty in the time it took to write this incredibly insightful entry. Remember the days when people used to write their thoughts in a personal journal? Now we all stumble upon your witty and snarky thoughts on the world. Thanks. Next time, send it home with my kid in a bag.

  50. the mom that does it all happily

    You clearly have issues. Worry about yourself. Who cares if Suzy wants to accessorize treats for the class. Be thankful there IS a Suzy to make all of the kids (including YOURS) feel special and do something fun. You feminist women wanted your lives too, go out into the world to work leaving everyone else to care and do for your children and when we do you bitch and complain because it’s HURT YOUR FEELINGS. Awwww. Cry me a river.

    • Workingmomdoingfine

      Wow. What a nonjudgmental attitude toward working mothers. I work, and I care and do for my children just fine. I don’t need you to do it, thanks anyway. The point of the post, which I think you missed, was to worry about yourself— to do what’s right for you and not to do something out of obligation. He actually celebrated the fact that there are Suzy Craftsalot moms. Just don’t put pressure on yourself to be something you’re not. I don’t get all the defensive reactions to this. It was pretty balanced.

    • Crystal

      Well, first of all, the author is male, so he’s hardly a feminist woman. Secondly, you didn’t even get what HE was trying to say. The underlying principle was “to each their own”. He didn’t say he didn’t appreciate the sentiment. He was saying for mothers not to beat themselves up if they didn’t want to be crafty. Personally, I loved what he said.

    • Wait a minute...

      You seem like a very bitter and hateful person. The author never said that it was bad to be the crafty mom, just for the moms out there who can’t be crafty not to stress out about it. No one here is whining or complaining, and I doubt that those mothers are. Did it ever occur to you that some of those mothers can’t craft things for their kids school parties because they don’t have the money to? Or that they might be a single mom with other priorities? Or that maybe they have a newborn to attend to? There’s a million reasons that a woman might not be able to afford the time to glue eyeballs on an orange, that shouldn’t determine her worth as a parent. I hope you don’t use that filthy language around your children, and I hope that they learn to not be so quick to judge others, like you appear to do.

    • mrsb

      Um, this was written by a MAN.

  51. Amy Baggett

    My issue with the Super Crafting Moms – I don’t care that you go above and beyond for your kid or for the kids in their classes. My problem is that the Super Crafting Moms tend to coordinate for grade level PTA parties and send out emails explaining step by step what we’re going to do – what ingredients to get for the snack, props for games, music, etc. It’s always complicated and a giant headache. They far out number the “let’s give them a Capri Sun and call it a day crowd” like me. In the end, I just quit the PTA rather than fight with the Super Crafters who always want to do more for the kids. The Lone Crafter I applaud, it’s the one leading everyone else into her creative world that I can’t deal with.

    • and if you want to try to help, but arne’t able to go above and beyond, then your shunned.

      I can’t tell you how many times we get emails at like 8pm the night before saying oh we need this and this, done in this exact way and at the start of school tomorrow. because everyone has 3 dozen of x just laying around the house…

    • I have to admit. I’m usually this mom- why? Because I’m a very tidy, organized person who doesn’t like overspending when she doesn’t have to & genuinely likes to organize events and crafty stuff. Honestly though, I’m OK with moms who just don’t have the time for this shit. JUST FREAKIN SAY IT “I don’t have time for this shit”. There, done. Because here’s what happens: they act all enthused for the event, ask what they can bring, and we hug and say goodbye then they head home and tell their spouse about this annoying asshole that’s making them buy 25 bananas and give up their Wednesday nights. Here’s an idea: just say “This is too complicated for me, I’ll bring some capri suns and call it a day”- that is AWESOME! Great, got you down, see you then. Thanks for quitting the PTA but the fight is on you- you’re the one who didn’t speak up, who volunteered for something you don’t have time for and now hate on the supercrafters who simply have different priorities- not better ones, just different ones. No one’s trying to lead you into their world- get in touch with your insecurities and take responsibility for yourself.

  52. TaraD

    I am that mom. I have a craft studio with just about anything anyone could ever want. My children have their little stations and love to craft. I spend lots of time in the classrooms and in the schools in general. I thoroughly enjoy time with my kids and time away from them. However the items pictured (if you are a true crafter) only took about 10-20 minutes each. So yeah why not quick easy and cute? I am blessed to be about to be home and have the time to spend in their school and I understand not all moms can or want to be home. I don’t judge them so why judge me?

    • Lisa

      Me too! And I agree. I know that may not have been the point of this blog post but now I’m feeling a little defensive. I live to craft. It’s my refuge from the stress of every day life. I’m not giving it up because others feel less than.

      • Not All Parents Have The Time

        You very much missed the point of the blog. He literally said “Some folks love to do this kinda’ thing, and that’s totally cool. But if it’s not you, then don’t try to be something you’re not. Because the results of our endless impress-a-thon are not good.” If you love to craft, great, no one is stopping you. This is a message for the mom’s that don’t and may feel bad about themselves. They shouldn’t feel bad. We all as parents have different types of responsibilities and we all do different things for our kids. And at the end of the day that’s all that matters. If you want to make my kid a snack pack, go for it!

  53. Judy

    i think you are trying to take alot of fun from a lot of people who really enjoy doing this kind of thing and also enjoy the happiness this brings to children. I can assure you there are thousands of people who enjoy doing this. If you aren’t one of them, that’s fine. But don’t try to diminish others because of your own lack of enjoyment. To all my crafty friends, enjoying being you and know most people appreciate who you are and what you do.

  54. bbethp27

    I am one of those crafty moms. Maybe you don’t understand the purpose behind things like that, but I do. I spent seven years as a classroom teacher and it is much more about the kids enjoyment. Maybe some do it for praise, but very few do. Most because they see something and think it would enhance it and make it more fun for the kids. At the end of the year when only two parents show up to a party, it is the little things that make kids smile and keep them from being sad that their parent didn’t show up. I thank all the crafty moms that put kids first, stay up late at night doing their projects, and spending their own money they probably don’t have to make sure your kids have an enjoyable party full of good memories! Oh…and maybe the teacher made it. Did you ever stop to consider that? Yes, some teachers actually do things for their kiddo’s at the end of the year. What difference does it make if a bag of gold fish has a cute saying on it? You are evidently disconnected from the educational setting or you would understand the meaning behind all of those cute things!

    • Crystal

      I’m a teacher too, but I didn’t read the article you read apparently. I did not take it that the author was trying to make the crafty moms feel badly about themselves. Conversely, I took it that he was trying to say that if you are crafty and want to do it, then by all means do it, but if you aren’t, don’t kill yourself trying to just because someone else is.

      I’m not sure that he’s disconnected from the educational setting. As a teacher and a mother, I can’t always make cutesy things for my daughters’ or even my classes. This doesn’t mean they don’t get treats. They just might be plain. In the end, the kids only care about the treats. I’ve never seen one really even care about the cute factor or the sayings.

    • As a Teacher

      As a second grade teacher, I can tell you that the kids generally don’t care about that stuff. I’ve had parents come in with the cutest cupcakes, snack packs, etc. The kids rip off the decorations/signs/etc. to get to the goodies. They’re 8 years old, they really don’t care about those crafts.

  55. I can honestly understand both sides. I am one of “those” moms who loved to help the A project be an A+ Project with a little extra crafting. Handmade cards, etc. But, I also gain my own joy and satisfaction from it. I was told once by a friend that if she were as talented as I was, she would be doing something different. However, I saw the talent she had, she could calm a raging storm (in a person of course.) The same people who could make me very upset, she could get them to just calm down and listen. We all have talents, in different forms. Mine just happens to be paper crafting and I love to share it. Those moms are not doing it for praise, or even the teachers. The smile on the child’s or recipient’s face says it all. Handmade cards to adults in an electronic age are priceless. Smiles don’t cost alot of money, it’s just the thought that counts. Share whatever talent you have, whether it is just “being” there for your child supporting them, or making them wonderful brownies at home, just share and enjoy. Don’t ever compare yourself to someone else. There is only one of each of us for a reason.

  56. Horrifically amazing! Haha

  57. I personally LOVE to do the crafting/creating for my child’s benefit. I love the fact that she loves it. I love the fact that she constantly tells me I’m the ‘best mom ever!’ because of the things I create for her. She comes up with the ideas, inspects the Pinterest boards and tells me which ideas are worth attempting to replicate. She also helps in the areas in which she can. That being said I don’t see one thing wrong with the mom who brings a package of doughnuts for snack. If it’s not your thing don’t do it! I just think it’s amazingly fun!

  58. I was totally ready to make fairy turds for my son’s preschool class on Wednesday and now I don’t feel bad for not wanting to! I am a part time substitute teacher and stay-at-home mom and I see all varying levels of parent participation. Giving extra effort to our kids is wonderful, but it can’t always be expected. Your child loves that you brought cookies. Just because you didn’t hand pipe personalized messages on them or print edible school logos doesn’t mean you don’t care or give effort!

  59. Lisa Wilnau

    I am a disabled Mom. I have had 34 back surgeries in 6 years. I have 2 boys who are 6 & 7 and there are many times I am physically not able to be at school functions, soccer games, Easter Egg hunts, friends Birthday parties, etc. I have more pictures of my boys taken by other people than by myself. Laying in bed, I am able to craft for each holiday, Birthday party or event and it helps me to feel as if I am a part of my boys lives a tiny bit. There is nothing worse than waiting all your life to be a Mom and then not being able to volunteer once in awhile, see your children proudly make a goal, go trick-or-treating, or even teach them to swim. Please don’t think Mothers like myself who go out of their way to do creative things are trying to one up you. Maybe, just maybe it is the one day that they are actually smiling when their children go to school so proudly, instead of waving them off with tears in their eyes because they can’t share in a special memory with them. My boys know that I would give anything in this world to be a “normal” able bodied Mom to them and that is enough. Maybe a little understanding and compassion would go a long ways and realize it isn’t about YOU.

    • ang

      My heart aches when reading this…my sister is in a very similar situation…having developed adhesive archnoiditis and is often bedridden from back disability . ….I think you should continue to do whatever makes you happy and brings joy to both your children and yourself

    • Karen R.

      I’m sorry that you dealt with your health issues, but this blog post wasn’t about you either… It’s encouragement for mom’s who can’t do those things for their kids.

  60. It’s OK to get off the Martha Stewart train. Really, it is. 90% of the parents will say thank you for taking it down a notch. (and I admit to being one who likes to cut, color and paste once in awhile — but then has no qualms about picking up our cookie contribution from the grocery store on the way to school 🙂 )

  61. Molly

    Yes yes yes

  62. Brooke

    I am a mom who enjoys doing these types of things for my son… I think we all possess the time and ability, it’s just how you prioritize. So don’t knock moms who take the time just because you don’t want to. And I won’t knock you for not doing it.

    • Rach

      I’m not sure we do all possess the time and ability. My son was delivered 9 weeks premature the third week of kindergarten. I’m in RN school, I work part time. I’ve taken final exams on less than two hours of sleep this year, and my daughter was late to school more than one during the time my son was in the NICU as well as the first few months he was home. More than once I was too busy meeting my children’s basic needs to remember to run to the grocery store to buy snacks for the week, let alone have time to craft for other’s. Do I wish my daughter’s first year of school had gone differently? Yes, of course I do. Did I possess the time to volunteer and be involved? I mean, I guess you and I have the same 24 hours in a day, mine just wasn’t spent worrying about trivial things between specialists appointments, clinicals, exams, and countless nights spent pacing the floor and nursing an infant with extra needs. People that automatically assume everyone has free time (and spare funds) need to realize that not all of us are playing the same hand of cards at the same time.

    • As one of those mom's

      Some mom’s want to do things, they just don’t have the time. Maybe you shouldn’t be so quick to judge how someone else prioritizes their time. I think that taking care of my sick toddler is a little more important than decorating a bag of pretzels. I would hope that you would agree.

  63. Yes!!! Amen!!! And can I please add that we need to stop throwing ridiculous birthday parties. Like, seriously. Your kid doesn’t care. They really, really don’t.

    • Wendy

      My kid(s) really do care. My son told me last month (as I was trying to get him to accept a birthday party at a local party place), Mom, “their birthday parties just aren’t as good as your birthday parties!” My son planned and helped me prepare for his party. It is exhausting, and sometimes I don’t love the work, but at heart I am crafty, and if I can do a little something every once in a while that makes my kid really really happy (not in an effort to one up anyone else!!!), then I guess I can put myself out there for them!

  64. Lauren Kuo

    I never hosted a birthday party for my 3 children for this very reason. We kept it a family celebration and they all survived and thrived. No sleepovers either because a house full of kids in PJ’s is a frenzied wakeover not a sleepover.

  65. Molly

    I think the person who wrote this is sad and suffering from extremely low self esteem. These decorations probably took 30 min tops and made the kids feel special. If you think they were there to “impress” the parents or other people I feel sorry for you because you have a warped view of the world and children.

    • Karen R.

      I feel sorry for you ma’am. You’re being very judgmental, and didn’t get the overall message that he is talking about. In the article he said that the parents that are crafty should go ahead and be crafty, just that the one’s who aren’t shouldn’t feel bad about themselves. God didn’t give us all the ability to be crafty. It doesn’t make us any less of a parent.

  66. You sound like a arrogant, controlling, joyless sack of …um… entertainment. No, it actually isn’t terribly difficult to print out a couple sheets of cute sayings and clip art to stick on prepackaged snacks; this was a very thoughtful, but in no way Herculean effort on the part of the giver. And no, no one would have looked askance at undecorated Goldfish crackers, or even no goody bag at all; though I guess I could see how the insecure underachievers among us might choose to feel threatened by the efforts of others.

    This was a gift that someone chose to invest their time and resources in for your child because they wanted to do so, and here you are trying to make some ill-conceived and poorly articulated non-point about it on the internet, where the giver is likely to see your rude and ignorant ranting. Bro. Get a life. Your kid probably minimized the contents of the bag to you when you asked because she knows you’re the kind of loose cannon who would find something, anything to freak out about.

    Let me give you some solid advice: Find the good and praise it. Make that your motto. And feel free to apply it “IRL” as well, since it’s unlikely that your hysterical and hyper-critical ranting stops when you log off your “daddy blog.”

    • Jessie Craftsalot

      Perfect! He sounds angry and unhappy. What’s sad is he was a missionary? Good thing he only shares his negativity in his blog and no longer around the world as “Christ’s love.” Bless his poor children… And wife. Hopefully he just takes his misplaced anger out on the blogging world and not his family.

      • As one of those mom's

        You sound so self-righteous. Get off your high horse… No one is being negative. But your comment seems to reflect a bitter and judgmental person. Hope that your poor children and husband aren’t subject to your hateful judgments of people 😦

  67. I was a stay-at-home mom when my kids were in elementary school, and I spent a LOT of time at the school helping in the office and in the classroom. Throughout their school years they have always gone to very diverse schools and some kids were from families that were very poor or who had a lot going on at home.

    My best friend and I shared homeroom mom duties over the years and we had treat bag duty. It was so fun for me to create these bags (we both LOVED crafting, and still do) and to see how happy the kids were to get a bag filled with fun stuff, and FOOD. The things you pictured in your post were just printed on a computer. Easy peasy and gives the kids a laugh at the play on words. My kids loved that kind of humor.

    As for spending time hugging and reading to kids instead of working on these projects, I would say most probably spend the time the kids are at school doing things like this. I remember get-togethers with other moms that were fun — laughter and no cussing. 🙂

    When I later became a working mom, I appreciated the moms who had this kind of time and creativity and would never think of shaming them as someone who doesn’t have anything better to do or who doesn’t spend quality time with their kids. As a matter of fact, these are the same moms who are helping out the teachers FOR FREE. Who are mentoring at-risk kids in reading programs. Who are having lunch in the cafeteria with their child and noticing the one who doesn’t have anything to eat and buying them lunch. Who are able to go to the school parties and programs and will remember to take a picture or video of your child, so you can share the day.

    Do I think some things can be over the top? YES. I’ve seen some very expensive party favors, things that were store bought in pricey boutiques. But to me, googly eyes on a apple and a cute phrase stapled to food doesn’t fall in that category.

  68. Brittany at

    Agreed. But hey, if they want to have fun–why not let them? Just because you don’t enjoy it doesn’t mean other moms who do enjoy it shouldn’t be allowed to. Personally, I am NOT the crafty type either. But if others’ want to be, by all means. No reason for me to feel bad because I have my own, different talents. I say–good for them! 🙂

  69. Jennifer

    Though I understand this is supposed to be funny and an observation, etc. can I be the odd man out and just say quit hating? It’s not a competition? Some of us moms that do these types of things are artists and creatively minded people. This type of thing is our outlet and fun for us. I have seen and heard mom comments about creative crafts and or gifts given and I just want to say – Lighten Up! Don’t act this way! It’s not meant to be a stab at you and your mommy-ing. I. I’m sure you’re a wonderful mom! My husband LOVES when I make things like this because, guess what? He’s an artist, too! There are all types of people on this planet. Some of us write well and make people think with their writing and some of us make things.
    Let’s stop the negativity and encourage each other in their giftings. There. I said it.

    • J.

      Another Jennifer! Hi!

      The thing is, if you read through these comments…it clearly IS a competition, at least for some, and my eyebrows are raised up about to my hairline at this point at the number of times I’ve read something vaguely equivalent to, “You non-crafty moms who can’t prioritize your time should be grateful someone is making your kids feel special” or the like–clearly there IS animosity and judgment going on among some of those who claim to “just love this stuff” but clearly have something else going on under the surface. (Reminds me of my mom, who happens to love vegetables, smugly telling me how I could lose weight if I just ate more vegetables, SHE eats almost nothing else and has no trouble with her weight. Thanks, mom.) (She never glued googly-eyes on oranges either.)

      I’m not crafty at all. But I got a kick out of, at my daughter’s last birthday party, sitting down at the piano and playing “Let it go” while all the little girls wailed Elsa’s anthem at the top of their lungs (God help the neighbors). Just because it was fun. And I could. And they liked it. So I get the creative-artist vibe thing. But I also have to admit that deep down part of me was going, “See, I can’t do cool crafty things, the sum total of this party was making a huge mess of sundaes in the kitchen and then watching a movie, but THIS is something I can do with these kids that might be different from the other parties they’ve been to.” I’m not proud of that, nor should I be, because primarily it was about fun…but I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t succumb to the mommy-competing pressure at least a little.

      We all just do our best. I for one appreciated this post. No, crafty-moms, don’t stop doing it if you love it–and I’ll work on forgetting that I read all these comments (and yours, Jennifer, wasn’t one of them) implying that these activities somehow imply greater love, attention, and investment of time in making our children feel great about themselves, and just notice how cute whatever it is is, and hope you enjoyed the process. 🙂

      Meanwhile, I’ll bring the juice boxes.

  70. M

    Maybe it’s just me but I didn’t see anything in here that said “crafty” moms should stop being crafty. To me this article is telling those moms that only do crafty things to “measure up” to stop. To me this article is saying it’s ok not to be crafty and that it’s ok to give very simple items. I am not a crafty person. It takes every ounce of my being to even think in a crafty way. I teach high school and coming up with a bulletin board idea each year is stressful. I use pinterest and when I try things on that site, they never come out quite right. If I attempt to create crafty things for my children to bring to school I always wonder whether I’ll be singled out because it’s not cute enough or because I brought nothing more than a store bought package of Little Debbie’s for my children to give out as their gifts. Maybe that’s paranoia–who knows. In my town, there are those people who are that petty. But take it from me…I am one of those mom’s who worries about the fact that I can’t come up with cute ideas like other moms and it stresses me out. I’m not asking anyone to stop–keep on keeping on. Just know that there are some of us who can’t–hopefully you don’t judge us the way you think we judge you.

    • Karen R.

      Well said! As a mother of four, taking care of my youngest and my sick mother, I just don’t have the time to do this kind of stuff for my kiddos parties. While I’d love to, I just can’t. I hope that people here understand that doesn’t make me a bad mom. It’s just not a priority for me. The time I could be up making them googlie eyed snack bags is time that I would rather spend with my kids, reading them a bed time story or playing with them. At the end of the day we are all just mommas and daddys trying to do the best we can for our kiddos! Be blessed! 😀

  71. Carrie

    I went back and re-read the article after reading all the comments. This is what I get from the article. Scott is writing this after seeing his wife struggle to finish a craft for his daughter’s end of the school year party. His comments should have been spoken directly, (and in my opinion privately) to his wife. I don’t think he thought this through enough, if at all, before writing this article. I’m sorry that his wife felt pressured and compelled to do a project that she had no time, and apparently no enthusiasm for. His wife is an adult, and more than capable of making the decision for herself as to whether or not she wishes to do so. That he didn’t take the opportunity with his daughter to even find out who made the goodie bag is rather telling. Instead of feeling so much competitiveness, it would have been better to have asked his daughter if she had remembered to thank the giver of the treat bag, instead of taking numerous pictures of it and writing an article essentially saying, “This is too much. It makes others feel bad. It is okay if others don’t do this for their child. My child didn’t even notice the effort you put into it. If you’re really crafty, then good for you.” I am in agreement that we all have our own gifts, and that trying to one-up each other isn’t a good thing. I do think that this article was not the best use of Scott’s stated commitment to “keep the flame of service burning.”

  72. Momma

    why all the parent shaming?! So what if these parents want to send in cute end of the year things. Why do we need to make other parents feel bad for doing these or not doing them?! Maybe we should realize we’re all fighting the same battle… Raise well adjusted, loving children.
    If you feel so frustrated by another parents desires… I feel bad for you. And if people feel obligated to do these crafts I feel bad for them… It’s call peer pressure- just say no! It’s not rocket science.
    I’m so tired of working parents shaming stay at home parents and vice versa.

    • What?!??!

      Did you even read the article??? That’s not what he’s saying at all. He literally said “Some folks love to do this kinda’ thing, and that’s totally cool. But if it’s not you, then don’t try to be something you’re not. Because the results of our endless impress-a-thon are not good.”

      I hope you aren’t the one that will be teaching your kids to read….

  73. Susie Craftsalot here. Yep, I am her. The one with the crazy-assed theme parties where even the food fits the theme. I make posters and plan activities and provide home-made hats and generally overhear the grumbling from the parents who attend. While they think it’s all clever, they feel like I’m setting a bar for them. I try to tell all of them the truth and maybe it’s time you all heard it too. There is a reason every second of those birthday parties is scheduled. There is a reason why the work that goes into them is so outrageous. I hate parties. I’m so painfully shy that I don’t know what to do with myself if I don’t have a job at that second. So having a job is a coping mechanism and planning every second ensures that I have that job. See? I really do like making my own pinatas. I get a kick out of coming up with twelve Dr. Seuss hats and turning grapes into truffula fruits. Party games where there’s actually a gax to throw rings at make me happy — happy in a place where I’d otherwise be miserable. When I go to another parents party where there’s less planning but still activities and mom seems to be comfortable talking to tons of grownups she’s hardly met before, I feel that same sense of the bar being set too high. I can’t do that. So I do what I can (this does not include marshmallow fluff or fairy poop) and what I do is not the same as what others do. That’s okay. And no, there’s no mice riding unicycles in my craft-room, though that might be a fun bakable clay project for next week.

  74. Anita

    Have you ever noticed that there are hairstyles and a million ways to do your nails on Pinterest too? I spend about as much time crafting as most moms spend on their hair, nails and tanning. We all have a hobby, a gift or a talent! Don’t pick on what someone enjoys doing just because is isn’t your strength! I don’t see a mom with beautiful hair and feel like I have to keep up with her. I just think “Wow, God gave her some nice hair and boy, she knows what to do with it”! I don’t see a guy who spends 8 hours fishing and think I need to go catch bigger fish! I don’t judge myself based on your talents so don’t judge yourself on the gifts God gave me!

    • Karen R.

      I think you missed the entire point of his post. In the article he said that the parents that are crafty should go ahead and be crafty, just that the one’s who aren’t shouldn’t feel bad about themselves. God didn’t give us all the ability to be crafty. It doesn’t make us any less of a parent. No one is judging you here, so there’s really no need to be defensive! Be blessed! 😀

  75. Wow, can you say, “JEALOUS MUCH???” I’m a “Susie Crafts-A-Lot” and damn proud of it. (As many Elementary-teacher types are…the types you WANT to be your child’s teacher!) The fact that you chose to say, “I just got back from my business trip” goes to show that you wanted to emphasize the fact that you’re a busy working mom who travels for your job. I could choose to let that statement make me feel inadequate as a teacher-turned-stay-at-home mom, the same way you CHOSE to let your child’s crafty snacks make you feel inadequate as a traveling business-woman mom. If the person who created all that stuff ENJOYED doing it, as opposed to feeling “obligated” (as you suggested), then what’s the harm?

    Rant over.

    • Beth

      The author is a he. So I don’t think HE is trying to emphasize anything about being a working mother.

    • Karen R.

      You seem to be angry over something very trivial. Also the author is a man. But even if it were a travelling business woman, so what? That doesn’t mean that woman is a bad mother. Some women have to do those jobs because they need to provide for their kids. Please don’t judge them. I hope that you will be open-minded in the future and understand that at the end of the day we are all just parents trying to do the best for our kiddos! Be blessed! 😀

  76. kdrose1

    Reblogged this on authorkdrose.

  77. Dmj

    You may find it silly but this level of effort can foster real creative thinking and the desire to make our everyday run of the mill activities more personalized. When check the block has become the norm, I appreciate the efforts of those glue gun yielding parents who do care. I’m all for it! (The play on words teaches creative writing, the googlie eyes teaches to look for familiar faces in ordinary objects =artistic & marketing skills, patterns & design)More attention to details the better. Life should be full of people willing to spread creative joy and happy thoughts one glue stick at a time. Don’t be a hater just because it’s not your thing. Just smile and be grateful someone made a prepackaged fruit cup more special. They may end up designing your next dress, writing your favorite music lyrics or poetry & believe it or not it can make your child who still finds wonder in this world feel special!

  78. Jessica

    I am a mom who enjoys doing these things, my kids and I come up with ideas together. It’s not to show up other moms, it’s for fun. Life isn’t a competition to everyone.

  79. Wow Bruce, Judgement much? Did you even read the article? It’s not about not wanting to make your kids smile, it’s about not feeling obligated to compete with other parents to make the cutest craftiest gifts. Some people don’t like to craft (p.s. that has nothing to do with their work schedule). Some people prefer to show their love for their children in ways other than googly eyes and cute sayings. There is nothing wrong if you really like to do that, but this article is addressing the pressure that people put on themselves (and people like you put on others) to do something that they don’t like just because it’s cute. I’ll be the bad guy my nieces and nephews get to tie up, I’ll watch doc mcstuffins with them, and I’ll sit and read with them but I won’t draw a happy face on each pack of crackers I give them. Bruce, I am glad your kids like your perfect party planning but for the rest of us who don’t care if everything is color-coordinated, it’s good to know that we are not being judged…oh wait, except by you. Oh well, Better just not give a **** what you think.

  80. Nina

    So true!!! And for all those who enjoy it thank you and don’t stop because others aren’t into crafting. I myself love to but i have five kids so i pick and choose when i get creative and i don’t stress if i only have time to grab a box of cookies. Do what makes you happy and yes you are enough craft or no craft. ❤

  81. Yes! Good for you for saying it! I’ve been thinking it myself! I must admit, I am a bit of a Susie Craftsalot, but still….it’s all gone too far! Everything our kids experience doesn’t need to be epic. Well said!

  82. When I was little a ‘big deal’ school treat was those moms that made the cupcakes in the ice cream cake cones or finger jello! Love this post. We do have to really consider WHY we are doing what we are doing. Impressing others is not necessary.

  83. Brittney

    In a way I do agree with your article, but I found it kind of off-putting. I’m sorry if you feel like you don’t have enough time to craft, and craft with your children. it for that matter. I on the other hand love it and so do my children. But I won’t go as far as eyes on a fruit cup but every once and a while I will splurge. But maybe just maybe you should find that spare time.

    • Not All Parents Have The Time

      I used to be one of those moms that would go above and beyond, making little crafts for my kids parties. However, things changed. My youngest daughter was diagnosed with cancer a year ago. But I guess that I’m just not “finding that spare time”. Is that correct? You have a lot of nerve to judge how other parents should be spending their time. Maybe you should understand that other people do have other obligations that outweigh something as trivial as “cutesy” snacks.

  84. Jen

    …make sure those cookies are gluten free and nut free….possibly made with organic flour and free trade chocolate chips…

    • Karen R.

      HA! I know that feeling! Usually if I send my kids with snacks for a party, it’s fruit. The restrictions are getting crazier with the years! I remember growing up and we had candy, cookies, and everything else and we all did just fine!

  85. Karen

    Stop the online cat fights. Why are you so concerned with what everybody else is doing? Do what you love and love what you do. There are so many important issues to be concerned with these days.

  86. Michelle

    Oh my gosh, seriously why all the haters…the blogger CLEARLY said “for those of you who are crafty and enjoy it, by all means do it.. but for those of you who get stressed out with this sort of thing, make it easy on yourself, be yourself and don’t worry about it..the kids don’t care either way.” I am a work from HOME full time single mom, and I agree whole heartedly with this blogger and I think if some of yawl were truly honest you would admit that SOME Of your motives might be to look like the cool mom in the class…(thus the incessant need to post photos of all this crafty stuff.” And seriously those of you judging moms because they don’t like to be crafty with their kids. I grew up with a crafty mom and as a result I grew to HATE seriously…get over yourself. Some of us moms do OTHER things with their kids like take them hiking, to the waterpark, local swimming pool, and all sorts of other things outdoors. Some of our kids don’t like the crafty crap so why should we feel pressured to do it. Just as you felt judged by this blogger–you in turn are doing the exact same thing.

  87. Beth

    THANK YOU! Who really needs to celebrate matriculating from the first grade to the second? Would any of those special snowflakes have gone hungry had someone not provided a bag full of off food? Let alone bedazzled it for them? It’s all just too much. Kids don’t need a party and a prize every time they fart, or finish a grade in school. Does anyone ever stop to think about the cumulative effect that all this fawning over them will have on our kids? They are going to be lost when the heavens stop opening and the choirs of angels stop singing merely because they accomplished that which is expected. Save the hoopla for the exceptional and the unexpected. They’ll all be better people for it.

  88. Bridget

    why is everything a zero-sum game – can’t we be happy others might enjoy doing what we can’t/won’t?

    I’m not bitter when my kids being home crafty things I didn’t make, I just enjoy it with them.

    There are a lot of things in this world to take to this level of disdain, but crafts aren’t it.

    • Wendy

      This is true. Alfie Cohn wrote a book called Punished by Rewards about the way extrinsic rewards like stickers and treats distract kids from developing the intrinsic desire to do well just for the satisfaction of a job well done.

      • Karen R.

        That goes against every principle we know works for parents. Look up behavioral parent training. It’s backed by years and years and years of research! Rewards and incentives are great for motivating kids to do well! Be blessed! 😀

  89. I love this article. I was prepared to get all defensive until I realized the writer is saying stop competing with Susie Craftalot if you’re not naturally inclined to be a Susie Craftalot.

    • Karen R.

      Glad you understood it, that’s how I did too! Wish many of the others here with their pitchforks could understand isntead of taking it as a personal insult!! Be blessed! 😀

  90. Connie

    It seems to me like he’s making the assumption that that people who put these items together didn’t want to do it, otherwise why would he have written this post. I am the crafty mom who likes to do it. I don’t do it out of competition but because my kids enjoy it. Let me rephrase that. My daughter enjoys it, my son does not. Therefore my son’s class gets cookies in ziplocs while my daughter gets a bag with the 4 food groups from the movie ELF, along with the list of what they are (you know, Candy. Candy Canes. Candy Corn and Syrup). No competition, no undue stress. I am sorry if his wife feels under pressure to ‘keep up’ but that is her issue, not mine. So need to tell me to ‘Stop it. Just stop it.’ Thanks anyway.

    • Karen R.

      Coonie, no one is telling you to stop it! He’s saying to the moms who are trying to do it and stressing themselves out to stop! It won’t make them happier! If you love making crafts keep crafting! I’m sure other parents appreciate your gifts! No need for negativity! Let’s all just remember as parents we are all trying to be the best parent we can be for our kiddos!! Be blessed! 😀

      • Connie


        After reading your reply I went and re-read the article and can see where it was addressed to the Mom’s who feel pressured into doing something they would rather not do and perhaps I jumped to the defensive. However, statements like this do appear to be quite negative towards the people who enjoy this type of thing.

        “There’s is probably one mom in the United States who actually enjoys doing this kinda’ thing. She sits whistling in her craft room, making little doo-dads out of marshmallow fluff and fairy turds while bluebirds flit about her shoulders.”

        I appreciate his attempt to take the pressure off parents who, as you rightly point out, are just trying to do their best, but no need for him to insult me while doing so.

        Thank you for making me rethink my response.

  91. Sally

    I love every word of yours on this topic! What I understood you saying is that craftiness is a gift and if you do not have that gift it is okay! Don’t try to be somebody you aren’t. those who are creative and crafty should not judge others. It is not a competition. Crafty people may feel free to continue and enjoy it and the uncrafty should not feel pressured to compete.

  92. shawn

    I work full-time after staying home with my kids for five years. I cannot get every school event off of work. I HAVE to work. I volunteer for at least one field trip each year for both kids. I pack lunches with love, and sometimes notes. My mom was a very creative room mom when I was little…wish I could do more…but have very happy, intelligent and well adjusted kids. They love their Saturday music lessons. When I read this post, my thoughts were: A. The daughter was excited about the treats and the mustache, lol! B. She didn’t notice the cute sayings. (I am sure other kids loved them) C. I bet my kids eould greatly appreciate the bag…at their school they would rather not have classroom parties. The last few years (3rd, 4rth, and 5th) the PTA decided each classroom would have a small paper cup of skinny popcorn, and a cup of water. The parties are an hour and a half which include the game Seven-up at the end (a way to quiet the kids). I have volunteer at one party per kid per year. I do not have the time to do more and know that many may say I shouldn’t complain if I am not in the PTA, but the parties the last year are so lame that they might as well be cancelled…They have taken all of the fun out. So….my kids seriously appreciate the crafty parents!!!

  93. AKChia

    WOW! I am completely surprised by the number of folks on here that took the time to formulate a reply to an article they apparently couldn’t take the time to read! So many “crafters” writing about not “hating”. So many comments about “stay at home vs working moms”. One person read that he was saying “enough with the celebrating every achievement (not sure how that one came up). While one spouted a load of vitriol at “feminist women” and another determined that the article was written for, and only for, his wife (without even considering that he knows more than one woman who has “relunctlantly glued googly eyes on all the fruit cups” in order to meet some imagined standard)!

    Seems more of us should follow the rule of reading through once and then reading through again for clarity before posting comment.

    • Sandy

      AKChia, a lot of the responses are actually to other people’s comments and not to the author. I did reply to a couple of responses, but not to the writer at all. I read the article and understood what he was saying, although he did kind of take a long way around to get there.

  94. Hooray, yes! I think this craziness must be being peddled by the googly eyes manufacturers.

  95. I’m most surprised that EVERYTHING in that bag seems to be food. Not a single keepsake-like thing. If you’re going to put all of that time and energy to (willingly or not) make something cute for the kids, wouldn’t you at least want it to be something that they would KEEP???

  96. Jamie


    • GretchenMatthews

      This seems very judgmental Jamie. Also no need for all the capitals. I hope as a teacher you understand how to type a sentence without coming across as screaming as a run on.

  97. this mom worked so hard to do something special for your child and this is how u respond to her?? How about being thankful. Nobody is asking u to do this. She did it because she enjoyed doing it. U and your post r ridiculous and make me so sad that there r parents out there that act like this. :(((((

    • GretchenMatthews

      No one is trying to hurt your feelings. That wasn’t the point of what this parent said. Maybe read through the entire thing before commenting?

    • But, that’s the thing. You know she didn’t do it simply because she enjoyed doing it. She wanted other parents to ooh and ahh over her perfectly Pinterested bag. Enough is enough. I know no one wants to come out and admit it, but it’s the glaring truth. It’s over the top. Sure, give kids a treat. But, a whole bag of snacks with sayings? C’mon now.

  98. ifeelthesameway

    I feel the same way about the “viral videos” of wedding proposals, first dances, prom invitations, etc. It always seems like everyone is out there to one up each other.

  99. maggie5

    Here’s the thing. I don’t work. My husband travels. Ten years ago, I was lonely, really. I put my kids to bed, and was fractious because I didn’t have the career I used to have, because we doubled down on his career so I could stay home. I’m not complaining. We made a choice. A choice that doesn’t denigrate the choice of another person, just what worked for us. If there is something crafty and fun that I could do to potentially be fun for the kids and give me some pleasure and outlet for MY creativity, what I do NOT need is another parent giving me judgment.

    This year? I still don’t work. But the demands of a chronically ill-child and some financial concerns mean I can not do these sorts of pleasures. I am NOT going to condemn the parent who can and does enjoy these things that give my child a small boost.

    What I’m going to do? Is be grateful. THANK YOU to the sweet parent who cared enough about ALL OF OUR CHILDREN to include them in a small token of remembrance.

    (And for the parents who complained about the content or quality of these tokens? FOR SHAME. What are you teaching you children about gratitude?)

    And maybe we should all take some time to be GRATEFUL for the parents who care, whether they can provide these sorts of treats or not. Those who make their kids say sorry, or clean up their mess, or say good job, or say thank you.

    Move along. Nothing to see here. We all just do the best we can. If you can’t see that, then that is on you.

    • Rae

      Maggie5 – I feel like you’ve written my story in your response!!

    • Kp

      take it easy, man. I am a stay at home mom of 4. Parents who have or take the time to do “crafty” things for their kids or classrooms are hard to come by. I agree that bag was a little absurd. Overdone for sure, but a bag of chips ahoy is lame. That is if your talking about presenting it to a classroom full of children. I guarantee you those oranges with with googly eyes were appreciated by the majority of those children, even if they weren’t by your own. How about writing a blog asking parents to stop inviting us to their freaking birthday parties every weekend. That I can relate to.

    • mallory

      the thing that I wonder is -how much of this is to show to the world that you are still smart/clever/creative genus and how much is because you truly enjoy doing this kind of thing? The thing that I found with these over-achieving moms is that it really is kind of a competition and a way for them to prove their worth and that they are better than me because I don’t comb pinterest for ways to compete with them. .

    • Michele

      Well said!!! Thank you!

    • Scribbit

      Are you kidding? If you need an outlet for your creativity, please pick up something truly fulfilling- like painting or dancing or anything besides gluing googly eyes onto oranges. I’m not in the least convinced that light decorating can replace the outlet you lost when you gave up your career. If you want to really do something creative for yourself, then commit to something permanent and serious. Clear out a room and make yourself a dance studio or atelier. Plus think of what your competence in actual art could mean to your kids.

      • Lindsey

        Scribbit – I can’t help but hear a load of snobbery in your comment. If someone enjoys crafting, great. Why must you assume that there is no way one could enjoy something so “non-serious?” Maybe that is WHY she likes it – it’s light hearted and fun. Lighten up. Geez.

    • Maria

      I feel like you have missed who the author was addressing and the message she was trying to communicate, but anyhow….your comment seems very emotionally charged and I think there is a deeper issue that has you vexed. Peace to you my friend 🙂

    • Kat42

      It’s subtle, but there is judgement and competition on both sides of this issue. While reading your reply, I felt judged. When I got to “…cared enough …”, I felt that you were implying that if I don’t do these things I don’t care? I am thankful for the gifts sent in, but I’m aware of the “I do everything and nobody does anything” attitude that can develop in some of the parents who are always doing the over-the-top gifts. I hear it in the workroom at the school and at the PTA meetings.

      I love crafting. I understand the need to do something when you’re a stay-at-home mom, but pouring this passion into creating social capital for your children may not be the what you were intending. What you were intending as “fun” may not be fun for everyone. I understand that creating subtle competition was not what you were intending, but we need to be careful about the messages we’re teaching our kids by doing this. Do you talk to your kids about the gifts and why you are doing it? They see you making them. Even if you don’t put their names on it, your kids tell them who brought the treats. The thing is, your children are getting the social credit – they become the popular ones who brings awesomeness. You might not even be thinking about the subtle competition you are creating and the ostracization of some kids. I do – my parents didn’t have means to do these types of things. I was never the person who brought in treats (not even for my birthday). Not because my parents didn’t care, but because they couldn’t. Trust me, these over-the-top things were momentarily fun, but they eventually reminded me of our inability to do it and made me feel worse in the end. As an adult with kids, I can only imagine what it made my parents feel when I asked if I could bring in bakery cupcakes for the whole class and they had to say no.

      An occasional treat is fun, but the crazy over-the-top treats can have unintended consequences. Think about all the other opportunities you can pour this creativity into – charities, community organizations, senior centers .. the list goes on an on. Trust me, a local nursing home would love crafty treats to pass out to those who may not have anyone. You would make someones day, teach your children about community and selfless giving, and get the warm fuzzies.

  100. jb

    As a teacher I’ve seen plenty of parents with great intentions with this stuff. They want to make things “special.” I get that. But not everything needs to be “special.” In the end its something that strokes our own ego, “I made this special for them.” If you want to do this special stuff here’s an idea that will be “crafty” but more importantly, give students the opportunity: have them do it. Stop doing it for them. So it looks like it was dropped. A lot. So what. Its not about how you feel. Its about the students.

    And to the mom that said she turned her kid’s project from an “A” to an “A+,” stop it. If you want your kid to grow, don’t do it for them. Seriously, teachers hate it when parents “make it crafty” at the expence of the expression of the kid. Teachers want their student’s voice to come out. Not the parent’s.

    • munchkinmomof3

      Loved your post jb! My daughters are now 23, 23, and 20. I just had a conversation with the 20 year old a couple weeks back. She was teasing me about how their projects were always THEIR creations and when she got to school every year she always new which projects were more parent created versus her classmates creations. She said she loved me for that! LOL Favorite project she ever did was Great Wall of China-made out of sugar cubes-she painted, then cut up a shirt of her sisters to make clothes for a couple of polly pocket dolls. Too bad I kind of forgot how heavy more then one box of sugar cubes could get once it was all glued together!!!. I did have to help carry it. Haha

      • Jennifer

        Isn’t it wonderful when your grown kids thank you for the way you raised them and even appreciate the things that you thought were shortcomings? ☺

    • Kp

      Um, don’t think this comment applies here. Topic not about doing school work for your kids.

      • Phil

        Her topic is perfect. Like the teacher said, if you want to make “special stuff” have the kids do it, have them take part. Take what the top poster said, a post that you seemed to love. She would wait for the kids to go to bed then spend all her time alone doing it, while complaining about being lonely. Maybe she should spend time with the kiddos doing projects like she speaks of after dinner for the whole class. Less lonely, for sure, great creative stuff for the class, for sure, kids take part, are creative and did something for the sake of their class teaching them generosity and service, bingo. I would also argue, it is almost guaranteed that the parents who do spend the time to do the extra cutesy stuff for every little event on earth are also the parents you can always count on to have the kids turn in projects that look like paid professionals put the project together, yet passing the work off as a 3rd grader. Do you now see how this teacher’s topic applies now

    • D's Mom

      LOVE this response…a couple of weeks ago my son (1st grade) had due his fairy tale project. He had to choose 3 projects to complete from a list based on the story he chose. Walking into school that day you could definitely tell that the parents did more than 90% of the work. I saw some of the looks my child’s work got because HE DID IT ALL HIMSELF. So what if it wasn’t 100% perfect? Yes, maybe it did look “sloppy” compared to the radiance of some of those princess projects floating around but the lesson in all of it was that I want my child to take responsibility for himself and his work. If he starts now to realize that he is ultimately responsible for completion and the grade he receives, I think the better for him in the long run. The only part I had in it all was to correct spelling errors during the rough draft process (yes, we did a rough draft of each project). Guess what, he got a perfect score and he did it all on his own!

      • DiannaM

        The teacher knew and appreciated that he did it all himself.

        I taught fourth grade and still remember to this day a Rain Forest project (15 years later) that a boy handed in that his mom did for him. I asked him what materials he used — he had no idea. I asked him how he came up with the idea — he just looked at me blankly. I finally asked him if his mom did the project and he admitted that she did about 90% of it! I gave him a C, and I wrote a note to the mom that his low grade was because she did most of the project.

    • bev

      The most thanks I ever received for a teacher gift? From a teacher/mom…sent her home with a crock pot meal on the night of our annual Christmas program. It allowed her to have a hot dinner with her family before rushing back to school for the evening program. Cute? No. Crafty? not really. A thoughtful, gift from the heart? YES!

  101. Pingback: Confession: I was THAT mom | i could cry but i don't have time

  102. Tammy aultman

    you are my hero! I totally agree with everything you have posted here. It is out of control and needs to stop. Bless you for what you are doing and stay humble.

  103. Helene

    I think everyone should do what makes them feel happy. I think people should stop writing about their opinions and write factual information about matters. I think people who continue to look to what others write as advice to feel the need to feel justified need to work on their own self-esteem. Only you can make yourself happy. Cute bag full of treats. Thanks to the mom choosing to say kids are worth her time!

  104. capturedwhisper

    I’ve read some of the comments criticizing your opinion on the subject, but I just want to say what I got out of this post was a sense of encouragement and empowerment. Thanks for the refreshing reminder to be who we are and not worry about what others think. Love the humor as well 🙂

    • allison

      Yes, I think a lot of people missed his point. Kids love treats and always will. Do they really care that their bag of sour gummi worms has a catchy note about them being a “bookworm” and reading over the summer? Doubtful! Parents shouldn’t stress about this and should stop trying to one-up each other. It’s annoying and the kids honestly don’t care!

  105. Marcy

    I grew up in a time when there were no bags of treats- never mind notes on treats- and I think I’m a pretty normal, well adjusted, productive nearly 50 year old woman. Personally, I prefer the good old days when the last day of school meant scrubbing your desk with a sponge and a bucket and going home with a bag full of papers and broken crayons.

  106. Irene McGuinness

    awesome awesome awesome.
    Some are just great at doing a great oatmeal cookie! And others are great at encouragement. Yes, the kid’s school bag treats were impressive but good grief!!! Like kids birthday parties and do in!!! Oh my!!!

  107. torie

    This is an opinion piece. It is not meant to offend the moms who enjoy doing these things (I’m one of them) but instead make the ones without that extra time and cutesiness feel better. While I enjoy doing things like this, screw making 20+ of those bags. Kudos to that mom!

  108. J.F.

    I am a stay-at-home mom and I’m extremely crafty. I’d be the one sitting at home making these snacks or working with other people’s children who can’t join the class parties to make them for themselves. The problem with your point of view is that you’re condemning someone’s effort to make your child feel special or happy. She’s probably not thinking about competition at all. Every now and then there is that special person who needs to outshine everyone, but that’s usually not the case. I spend so much time at my children’s schools volunteering and I would think that the parents who can’t be there would be grateful. On so many occasions children feel bad and cry because no one came for them. It’s understandable that everyone can’t take off work, so I make it a point to pay extra attention to those children. For you too attack someone for doing something so kind is ridiculous. Maybe you should thank that person instead.

    • D.C.

      Did you even read what he wrote?? He didn’t attack anyone. He essentially said if you’re the person who loves making faces on oranges or whatever because you genuinely enjoy it, then by all means, go for it. But if your motivation for being crafty is to avoid judgement by other parents, then stop torturing yourself because the other parents are too busy to pass judgement. If you took that to be an attack, perhaps an examination of your own motivations or your feelings towards those parents who aren’t able to contribute as much as you is in order.

    • GretchenMatthews

      You shouldn’t cry for me. I already cry that I can’t attend my other children’s school parties. I can not attend them because I have a disabled child at home that needs round the clock care. Stop judging other parents and holding yourself above them. Everyone has a story. There is no need for you to put down others because you think that you care more about their kids than they do.

  109. Charity

    You’re a guy and you just don’t get it. Most of the time we are actually competing with the ideal mom we are supposed to be on our own head. I think your advice is good but it ain’t going to happen. Yes, I’m one of the crafty ones but I too stress. You should see the birthday parties I put together! I do it for the memories, the oohs and ahhs, the kids, and so people feel loved and appreciated. Anyone can send a gift card and nobody remembers it. I can tell you if I had more money I would do even more. I think the world needs more personal touches and less gift cards.

    • HappyMomma103

      What do gift cards have anything to do with this? My kiddos could care less about the little printed notes that someone got from pinterest. And you’re being quite sexist in that post. Maybe you should stop judging the author of the blog and re-read the blog. Only this time read it the whole way through so you will actually understand what they are getting at. You seem to have missed the point Charity.

  110. “Not because she thinks she’s better, but because she’s honestly, genuinely surrounded by the intrinsic joy of making creative stuff.” Can i use this quote as a meme? 🙂 This is me,and I like to make things look more fun and cute! As a preschool teacher and mom,I know they are just going to get thrown away, but if it makes me happy to make them and the kids happy to get them,and the other parents appreciative because they don’t have the crafty thumb, then its all good! When i saw all those pictures i just kept thinking…”How cuuuute!” and “Thanks for the idea!” But I also agree with you,if its not your thing please don’t feel like you have to do it….”Suzie Craftsalot” (me) doesn’t care or judge if you didn’t do anything crafty,and is not in a competition…its just a genuine love for crafting.I get excited when my kids come home with these things that other moms make and feel no sort of competition or need to outdo them next time,I just get new ideas and use them in the future for my own kids or for my preschoolers! Craft on I say!!

    • allison

      The cute tags get ripped off in about 2 seconds and thrown in the garbage, unfortunately. This Pinterest-perfect competitiveness has got to stop.

      • Michelle

        AMEN to the “This Pinterest-perfect competitiveness has got to stop”. Too many stay-at-home moms need to get over themselves AND quit worrying about what other people think. We are creating a whole generation of needy “don’t judge me” moms. That was how I was greeted after an ill mom begged on Facebook for one of her friends to help her out getting her kids up and ready for school. I was available and showed up at her house at 6:30 am and was greeted with a pathetic “don’t judge me”. As expected, her house was a mess. That’s what happens when mom is sick and dad is working double shifts. As a mom who is now a grandama, I can’t imagine my daughter-in-law whining about her choice to stay home and worrying about what kinds of treats other moms are sending to school.
        If the whiney, needy mom’s want to do themselves and their families a favor, get a job and send your kids to daycare. You are not doing them any favors by your “sacrifice” of being a stay-at-home mom.

    • Cheryn

      On a rare occasion I get a very crafty bug and go above and beyond. It feels great and my kids love sharing them. When my kids bring home something someone else put time in to I like to talk with them about it. Sometimes they don’t get the meaning of little sayings so it becomes a teachable moment. So I personally say THANK YOU!

      To all the other moms and dads, I feel ya. The pressure to be more so you aren’t judged, or even (in my case) so your child isn’t embarrassed for not bringing something cute enough ~ maybe more so for a parent of girls.

      Why don’t we stop trying to be all things to all people? We’re setting our kids up for the same stress! Teach your children to show gratitude for others’ talents by being grateful yourself. Appreciate the crafty moms, the volunteer moms, the working parents that send money for the pizza party, etc… We all play a part, and our kids enjoy the fruits of our team work.

  111. Wow, so I have to comment.. so many parents when they have their child share over and over pics on fb, instagram, etc.. and always say look at my child.. and then a mother goes out of her way to make such awesome little gifts cause maybe she felt she didn’t get to participate in a lot of activities for the year.. and then someone comments like this.. shame on you. You can’t have it both ways, always wanting people to help, care for your kids and then verbally attack the ones who do. Shame on you blog writer, shame on you!!!

  112. allison

    So well-said, Scott (blogger). What kid is going to look back and say, “I LOVED when the bag of orange slices read, “Orange you glad 1st grade is over?”? This is ridiculous! There are so many passive aggressive commenters saying, “We do this to make the kids feel cared for and special.” No, sorry. Reality checks are in order. That’s not what made me feel special and cared for as a kid. My parents reading to me, listening to me, helping me, teachers saying kind things to me, grandparents attending my events to support me…..I remember some friends’ parents helping me when I was sick at a basketball game. That’s what made me feel special. I’m also a teacher and say this from a teacher’s perspective. Let your children make imperfect crafts to give out. Let them hand-write their names on their Valentines. Teacher gifts (if you wish to give them) are the best when they’re heartfelt. I’ll take a letter of thanks from a parent or student over a, “Have a grape summer!” basket of purple things any day.

  113. When my children were in school, I WAS the type of parent that sent in those type of snacks and the best part is, “The Kids LOVED It!!!” That’s all that mattered to me. To those parents that can’t do it…go to the store and buy cupcakes that have some kind of design on it. The kids Love those too. It ISN’T hard to be craft or have an imagination. Put yourself in the kids shoes and think of what they like. Easy peasy…don’t have the time, then go to the store..they make Great stuff there. Did some of you ever realize that the ones that do this may be low income so they try their hardest to make it look like they aren’t low income. Yes, I had fit in that category. Don’t feel that we did it to be a pain in other parents butts or to show off, it was the best that we could do. (At least, that was my reason for doing it.) Sincerely, Gwen Barton – God Bless –

  114. Beth

    Mommy wars are stupid but as someone who genuinely enjoys crafts and making things special, I find this post judgmental and condescending as hell. I know what I’m worth and I know what I like and I don’t need validation from a stranger. I know it’s stupid to comment and everyone is entitled to share their opinion but this genuinelyl pissed me off.

  115. Kim Lane

    Oh my goodness, the defensiveness! Me thinks you protest too much! This was an opinion piece. Personally U thought it was hysterical. I appreciate Moms…and Dads…who have the talent and make the time to create special things for the kids. But I do appreciate being “enough”, store bought Oreos and all. At 52, I realize U am from a different generation…but seriously, kids haven’t changed that much. We used to have fun helping our teacher clean up her classroom! Now don’t get me started on birthday parties…:)

  116. Gabby G

    I believe what I got on the last day of school was “bye”.

    I was happy with that. Our kids would be also. It’s summer.

  117. 12 years I was home with my boys before my divorce sent me back into the paying work world. I could not craft those items if Susie herself were next to me giving me her ideas. Funny thing is I have actually apologized to my boys for not being a crafty mom. Their response was crazy, full of love. They also just love the sugar rush in the package. Thankful for the parents that love this stuff and even more thankful that my own boys do not interpret it as a symbol of being a good mom or how much I love them! Great opinion piece that honestly expressed the feelings of us non crafty moms and the appreciation for the ones that are.

  118. Reblogged this on Worst Ex Wife Ever and commented:
    Thank you for articulating both sides. As the non crafty mom, we appreciate you crafty types. My boys just love the sugar rush that’s provided.

  119. Amber

    I have to say that all moms have different strengths and challenges, and this mom seems a little jealous. I appreciate stuff like this, I really do. I remember once, as a very young mom, I made these special chocolate covered Oreo Santa’s and Nutter Butter snowmen for a Christmas potluck. I was so proud of my hard work and talent, until I overheard another mother sarcastically say, “yeah, wish I had time for something like that.”

  120. oh my gosh... chill out

    Ladies… chill. If you took the time to read the post, she is saying two things:
    1.) If you actually enjoy doing the crafts, then go for it. Rock on. You are great.
    2.) If you only are doing it to keep up with some imaginary notion of what a mom should be doing, stop it. Do what you enjoy and don’t worry about stressing yourself out with a one person pinterest party.

    How is this being taken so many wayward ways? I don’t understand. It’s pretty clear what she is trying to say. Are people just using this as a backboard to vent about other things?

    I rarely comment on these things (as in about once a year), but these comments…

    • Amber

      But we, as moms, need to understand that this is how these other moms show love, they don’t do it to make us feel inferior. That reaction is of our own doing.

      • oh my gosh... chill out

        Agreed, but I don’t think that she is saying that the crafty moms are trying to make people feel inferior. I’m just saying that there are a lot of comments based on general opinions on the matter aimed at her. I am one of those crafty moms and didn’t take it as an attack. All she is simply saying is that the moms that don’t enjoy that stuff shouldn’t feel guilty if they choose not to do it. They need to stop putting pressure on themselves because instead of coming from love, it comes from guilt. Two totally different feelings!

      • oh my gosh... chill out

        oh and by the way ~ the teacher that suggested letting the kids do it. GENIUS! Why didn’t I think of that?

  121. I’ve long since let it go. When I had only one child and we would sit and do these things together, it was fun. Now that I have three and the younger two aren’t interested in it, it no longer interests me. So I don’t bother. And no one cares. On the other hand, there is a picnic in the park coming up and the teacher asked me to bring ketchup, mayo and mustard. Well, I can’t very well service hamburgers without lettuce, tomato, onions and pickles, now can I? Before it’s over it will turn into a gourmet burger bar, because, well, that’s my thing.

  122. Julie Stirling

    I’ve always had to work. As a single parent, staying at home was not an option. But, to those of you that are stay at home Moms and say that you don’t work, I say you’d better look in the mirror again. You have the hardest and the best job in the world. Raising kids to be great adults. And that is backbreaking work, plus (unless you have maids and child care workers galore) you also cook, clean, schedule (ballet classes, ball games, etc.), you chauffeur, you squeeze the pennies until they scream. Yes, the rest of us do this as well, but, as a stay at home Mom, you are on duty 24/7, no holidays, sick days, etc. We, at least, have someone older than 4 to talk to during the day. Please do not sell yourself short. I am now a grandmother of 5, was laid off a year and a half ago and caring for my parents full time. My house is in foreclosure and I am struggling to stay afloat. Working full time does not always give the desired benefits. And I would have loved to have been able to stay at home with my children when they were little. Ok, off my soapbox now. Primarily just wanted to say that all professions, including stay at home Moms are work. Just the salary comes in hugs instead of cash. Have a wonderful day.

  123. Are you serious? You are telling other people to stop what r hey enjoy doing just because you can’t do it. Get over yourself.

    • Cheryn

      Nope. That isn’t what is said. If you genuinely love it, carry on and thank you. If it’s out of obligation or fear of judgment then stop. Stop stressing yourself out over googly eyes and be content with what you are willing too do/be.

  124. Brook

    Many of the kids in the school where I teach would love to have food to take home. The brand and adornment wouldn’t matter, because it might be the most food they will see for days.

  125. Maybe he could spend his time doing “crafty” stuff for his kids and their classmates rather than posting cynical blogs.

  126. michelle

    People bring different things to the table, I am one of those parents that try to make each experience unique for my kids and their friends. I am the mom that makes special gifts for their teachers vs giving a gift card. My kids birthday parties are talked about year after year for the creative and energy we put into it. Am I a better parent- no- this is what makes me happy and not every parent needs to do these things. Do not judge the ones who want to do these things to put a smile of kid’s faces….

  127. Karen

    Their only kids once and the items are cute. Stopped getting angry at someone else for wanting to put a smile on someone’s face. You don’t want to do it and it’s your choice. No one has judged you for it. Rest assured that your cookies will get eaten as well. No one cares that you have no desire to put a picture on a bag of crackers. Be miserable about the party and keep it to yourself. Everyone else wants to make the most of it because they are young once

  128. Joy

    Maybe stop judging eachother regardless of whether you’re crafty or not. Let the creative people do their thing and be grateful for their talents and efforts instead of bitchy. Geez, people are so weird.

  129. Breleigh79

    Why can’t you just stop at the point when you appreciate that someone took the time to make your daughter feel special? For some of us we recieve gratification in making gifts like these. And it’s not for ourselves as you so one sidedly pointed out. It’s knowing that our children were able to show appreciation to their teachers and friends. And while your out on your business trip not returning home until after midnight we are up too gluing googly eyes to oranges and working just as hard as you do. My talents lay in the the area of crafting and Pintrest is simply a suggestive tool for me. Without a doubt you possess talents that I could never master but I’m not going to be a jerk and go slamming yours online just to make myself feel better.

  130. Shannon

    The biggest thing I am surprised about is the few minutes of my life that I will never get back after reading this blog post. Really? You’re going to dedicate a whole article talking about how ridiculous the parents are who make crafty things for their children and classmates? Then that you believe most other parents feel obligated to do the same and that they have better things to do? Honestly, this is a pointless topic and this forum could have been used for a much more appropriate message that actually talked about something worthwhile. There is nothing wrong with your writing but if you want to be a great writer you need to identify with the audience better. As a parent, I worry about and think about many things that have to do with my child. The craftiness of things she brings home is NOT one of them.

  131. Amy

    What a great story……you hit it right on the nail!….you weren’t complaining or cutting anyone down. I love that you see that parents do this cause they like it……well written…..and moms/ dads, if you do it to try to beat the others STOP IT….because you did this for your child and no matter what it is or how it looks, they will love it over all……

  132. Granny Goodcraft

    Lighten up people! I loved it and it’s totally true. I am a self made crafter that taught myself out of boredom. I guess I could have been out bar hopping, leaving my children home alone instead of crafting. It brings me pride and pleasure to craft. I’m 62 and I still make things for my adult children. I have passed it to my children and now my grand children love to craft too!

  133. I’m always fascinated by opinion pieces (and their subsequent responses). It brings out the best in us, while somehow managing to turn us against each other based on…..what exactly? In this case party favours? Folks, in a day and age when it’s really hard to find people who understand the need for compromise and unity can we not just accept this one man’s feelings on the matter? If he sees there is a segment of ridiculous effort going into things that don’t matter, then by all means let him express. I for one think it is equally valid for people to enjoy doing these type of things (I know several crafty moms out there who get a feeling of satisfaction when people say ”Oh that’s cute!”).

    My end point being that we all do things that make us feel worthy and validated, be it pouring ourselves into work, or our social lives, or a kid’s party favours, or yes even writing an opinion article…we ALL do things to make us feel worthy and validated. Nothing wrong with that, and I hope that each of us will take the time to appreciate the over-excited crafting mothers out there as well as the over-excited wordsmith bloggers. Good on them both!

  134. Jamie

    The thing is – some people really, really enjoy doing this type of thing. I agree with your point if they are feeling pressured to do it. However, for some people they really like to do it. Why steal their joy?

  135. Annie

    I had no one to get me off to school. I did. So I celebrate the first day of school with a card, and some special things for my kids. I always give them something for grades or Valentines Day…I was never celebrated, ever. My artwork was never hung up. As early as second grade, my dad left and my mom wouldn’t get out of bed…so a bag like that would have really made me feel special. So though I am not that crafty…they don’t stay little that long…and I do too much, but I don’t want them to ever feel what I felt…feeling special is important at that age. I get what you’re saying, I do. But if that bag changed the day for one, then it’s a huge victory in my book. 🙂

  136. although I found this hilarious, I disagree with the premise. Most (MAYBE NOT ALL,) of the people who do these kinds of “crafty” things, actually WANT TO. A mom or dad who was “assigned” to make the “end of year gift baggies” could have very easily done so without all the “bells and whistles.” In my opinion, someone who ENJOYS this type of thing VOLUNTEERED to make said gift bags. Decorating kids’ stuff with unnecessary crap is nothing new!!! Just because it seems “over the top” doesn’t mean the majority look at it as a CHORE like you seem to. Just at food for thought.

  137. Rebecca

    I must admit that I am that crafty mom. I love to craft, especially paper crafting. The craft and hobby industry is a 30 billion dollar market so there is more than one mom in the USA that enjoys the hobby. With that being said, I craft because it is my stress release. It is my creative outlet that allows me time to decompress and be in my happy place. Making treats for the kiddos is just another fun project. It is not meant to cause other moms stress. I never judge other people by what they do or do not bring for a party. The author is correct that we moms are putting to much stress upon ourselves. No one is perfect. Just be happy in you and don’t worry about the rest. That is how you find joy in life. Impressing Susie Craftsalot will not happen…she has already moved on to her next project and will be engrossed with it! Right now it’s softball hair bows LOL.

  138. Kristin

    This article just furthers the Mommy wars dialogue. This is a working moms against stay at home moms mentality. You work to make yourself feel good and accomplished…maybe for a stay at home mom, this gives her a feeling of worth. Not having a job and choosing to be home is hard on your self worth. This article made me cry.

  139. Clarissa

    I really get that you are trying to let women off the hook but I really want you to see it from the perspective of women other than your wife. If that is not something your wife enjoys then that is fine. I used to be a stay at home mom and I did Pinterest things for my children because motherhood is often a thankless but amazing job and I needed to actually accomplish something from beginning to end on a day. These did double duty of letting me do something for my children (they were my career just like you probably have a career that you take great pride in and would never be looked down on for going the extra mile at work-this is a double standard for SAHMs) and seeing something finished (the house gets dirty immediately after you clean it and the kids forget what you just told them so you just have to FINISH something.) I also want to add that my boys always notice when another mother does this because they actually see how much work goes into it. I often hear that my children said thank you so much for working so hard to the other mothers in a room. The last thing the mom that worked on this needs is your eye roll. If you had been appreciative then I guarantee that your daughter would also have been grateful for the effort and noticed since gratefulness is a learned behavior and not an innate one. I work now. I don’t feel bad that I don’t Pinterest little crafts for my boys anymore but I have so much gratitude for the moms that do work to make my kids feel special. We are a village. We are all doing our best and I wish you could see that.

  140. im a crafty mom. I love doing stuff like this, it’s fun to me. I also work full time & have 3 kids. I don’t do crafts to stress other moms, I do it because I simply enjoy it. I know my kids get a kick out of it too, we normally do these sort of projects together. I’ll be the first to stop when I am in over my head, or its “just not fun” anymore. But for now, crafts are a way for me to relax, have fun, be creative & sometimes silly. Please don’t feel like I’m trying to one up you or outdo you, my children don’t “expect” things like this… Just giggle (or roll your eyes) & know that anyway you volunteer or contribute is awesome!

  141. R

    sometimes the crafts and Pinterest is the way to keep me sane- manageable hobby…because someone has to be home and look after kids; can’t just go for a run or do grouse grind anymore for stress release…so why not kill two birds at once? something for the kids + stress release (avoidance of chores)/acts of service to show love. I don’t think anyone judges- all moms know it’s hard work and that everyone is doing their best given the resources they have.

  142. I hear you… but what you don’t understand is that sometimes it’s not for competition or praise, it’s to feel three dimensional again. Before I had 4 kids I had all the time in the world for my hobbies that mostly consisted of creative outlets: nature photography, oil painting, drawing. These days I don’t have the blocks of time necessary to do those hobbies the way I want to, so I use my creative skills to create things for my kids; crazy cakes and hand drawn decorations for birthday parties, turning their pb&j into a dinosaur head eating fritos, etc. Between running my business and trying to manage this big, messy family, doing these things make me feel “whole”, as cheesy as that sounds, but without it, all I am is a work horse. And I like to see the enjoyment my creativity brings to my kids and others. Someday I’ll be able to set up a place to oil paint without worrying the kids will get in to it, and some afternoon I’ll have a few free hours to draw the portraits of my kids I’ve been meaning to draw since they were two, until then it’s minecraft, paw patrol and monster high and some pretty cool homemade Halloween costumes.

  143. Penny Buckingham

    Why not let the crafty moms do their thing? Your daughter’s bag got her to the breakfast table with a smile and was a conversation starter. I don’t have a creative bone in my body but don’t hold it against those who do. We all have different strengths. The bigger issue IMO is the large amount of unhealthy food in the bag!

  144. Gary

    The thing that I’m tired of is those Moms (or Dads) who do their childs projects for them and make them so ridiculously incredible that you know for a fact that the child had absolutely no part in it at all. Then they win first place. WTF is that? I have my son feeling like he failed because he basically was beaten by someone 30 years older than him. lol. It is not teaching the kid anything if you do their project for them and certainly not when you allow them to take the credit for someone else’s work.

  145. Toeknee

    My concern is more about the “stuff.” As a teacher, I see more and more students who feel like “You want me to do that? Ok well what do I get?” In the instant gratification society we live in, practically everything we want, not need, is a click away. Do we want to teach our children that every moment of their lives is “special?” Or are we setting our children up for disappointment about the real world. Personally, I don’t remember the last time I got recognized at work with gifts. It’s the internal that feels good, not the stuff.

  146. CC

    Don’t worry about the parents who do this sort of thing. Worry about why you’re worried about the parents who do this sort of thing. I’m not a parent but I do know that most parents at one point or the other do something that displays their pride in a way that non-parents cant relate to. This includes throwing expensive parties for a 5 year old or posting 5 pictures a day on Facebook of their baby and some take the time to put together thoughtful gifts. Children go through phases where they appreciate some things and don’t appreciate other things but when they become adults some of these gestures will stay in their mind and they too will have kind gestures towards other people. That is the true value of doing this sort of thing – being kind.

  147. Robin

    My daughter is a teacher. In her class, she is the one who puts this bag together. Not parents. I’m sure she would appreciate help. On her pitiful salary, she would welcome contributions. Just be grateful someone thought of the children. Grumble quietly to yourself!

  148. normal53

    My son for some odd reason came up with an idea all on his own. He made the rubber loom bracelets for each of his classmates and a card that said, “have a great summer.” It was simple but the point is he did it on his own. Just like all these other moms do. He will probably be just as crafty as these mom’s that do these cute little bags of treats. By no means do I ever feel like I have to do these for school to outshine any other mom. Yeah, I’m glad he’s in school and continuing on but I don’t know any of the other 20 plus kids that change every year to make them feel special. I make little notes with pictures on it for my child’s lunch. I make my kids feel special and by doing this it makes them want to make others feel that way. In my eyes I’m more proud my son that he showed the gratitude and thoughtfulness of his own class that he spends all year with.

  149. whisperedaria

    My Mom was a teacher for several years. Every gift she gives, every handout…everything is accompanied by a written or verbal version of these notes. And we love her for it. When they get a little corny, we roll our eyes and laugh. I think the thing a lot of people are taking offense to is your assertion that most people do this only to keep up with the neighbors. Some people genuinely enjoy this, and this is the way they think. They get pleasure out of imagining the kids opening each goodie, out of crafting the punny little sayings, out of gluing the googly eyes. I agree that anyone who doesn’t enjoy it should stop.

    To the person who said the people who enjoy this should do something “worthwhile” with their time: Why is their art and enjoyment any less valid? My mom can’t dance, and she doesn’t enjoy it. She doesn’t like to paint. She already volunteers for a lot of things, a lot of these crafts are for that purpose. She has a definite talent for making these cute doodads and sayings, and she likes it! Sure, she gets an ego boost, but doesn’t anyone whose hard work pays off? Does a dancer not get an ego boost at applause or a painter get a boost off of good comments on their painting? It doesn’t mean that’s solely why they practice their art. Telling people who enjoy this to do something else is just like telling a dancer that they should start gluing googly eyes on everything.

    So let’s just let people do what they enjoy, appreciate what they do, and don’t judge what they don’t.

    • Lori

      Well said! No need to vilify that which we do not agree with. Your mom sounds lovely!

    • DiannaM

      Love love love this response! I totally agree — some people really enjoy doing these crafty things so let them do it and be thankful! If you’re not crafty, don’t beat yourself up and don’t feel like you need to be. I think what we really should be discussing is why we always feel less than, why we cannot allow others to have gifts and talents without jealousy, why we don’t allow ourselves to just shrug and say, “Oh well. That’s not my thing but you have fun with it.” We are all different and that’s a very good thing!

    • achn

      My gift is photoshop. I clone out the kids who aren’t allowed to be in the picture for one reason or another. You can’t say “don’t be in it because your Mom and Dad don’t want you photographed” you stick them on the end and take them out electronically. That is my crafting gift to the world. Basically, those parents were probably too busy dealing with their at home lives to notice the hand crafted items their kid brings home, which some Mom lovingly created.

    • babyroo0501

      Nicely written comeback to this bitter woman. She should be thankful for the gift to her child and the fact that someone’s artistic gifts made her smile and get out of bed Happy in the morning. Super cute ideas in that bag for the end of the year!

  150. Meg

    This post is so petty. You don’t like it? Don’t do it.
    Don’t slam the women who do enjoy it.

    • did you actually read it? he wasn’t “slamming” anyone. he says women shouldn’t feel obligated to do it, as if it’s some kind of competition. let the creative women be creative. you guys are awesome at it! let the rest of us contribute in the ways we can. Then you can have fun and I can spare you from my painful pinterest fails lol.

      • Lol

        Not because she thinks she’s better, but because she’s honestly, genuinely surrounded by the intrinsic joy of making creative stuff.

      • Meg

        You’re right. I reacted poorly when I first read the post because it made me feel guilty as a crafty-mom. I never have intended to make other mothers feel inferior or like they have to compete with me. It’s sad to me, as adults, that we need to post things like this to say “You are enough.” Shouldn’t we know that by now?

  151. TR

    So what if there are mom’s wanting to do nice things for kids! As a mom in the school I can tell you they appreciate what they get either way.
    For those who want it to stop, why? Do you feel Guilty? I don’t make those cute things for my kids but I do get involved. Want to make yourself feel better? Go volunteer with your schools pto or in the classroom once in awhile. People volunteer and do special things for the kids, get over it.
    I’m terribly disappointed in this, just another form of bullying over insecurity. Not everyone is super mom or super dad but if you want to complain just stop!

    • Kira

      “Whatever the case, for most of you moms out there, the competition is all in your head. And so is Susie Craftsalot. Some folks love to do this kinda’ thing, and that’s totally cool. But if it’s not you, then don’t try to be something you’re not”

      Shockingly, the author said the exact same thing you did.

  152. Yes! Yes! Yes!

    I was already the “lazy” mom, but you just gave me permission to embrace and celebrate that!

  153. You obviously have a liw selg esteem! The notes and comments attached were exactly meant to build that self esteem in the children receiving them! Sorry that your feelings are of disappointment in yourself and I am sure your child will learn to follow in your footsteps regardless of that little bag of fun and encouragement!

    • Mogwai

      Yes, liw selg esteem is a problem in the world today. You seem like kind of a bitch, just sayin’

  154. Kim cortes

    Ok so I am one of those mom’s that enjoys doing these type of things every once in awhile!!! BUT yes you are right we all have an area where we shine more that is where we should concentrate our efforts. While doing this it makes us happy and others around us that may not enjoy that certain thing. And ya know sometimes ” that bag” of cookies is more popular than those craft things.😉

  155. If you feel your wife is under pressure, tell her to stop it. Not me. We do it for ourselves & the kids. Not to make other parents feel bad.

    • Exactly!!! I loved crafting far before putting Pinterest! I make stuff for my kids because for me it de-stresses me. Crafting is like therapy for some of us. I don’t do it to make anyone else feel bad. I love love love making things. Other parents have different talents. And they shine when they do their thing! Find your thing and let it shine! But I will keep crafting because it’s fun and I enjoy it.

  156. Thank you for affirming people that we don’t have to be a super crafter and that we are enough. But I also feel for the mom whose gift you just blasted on the internet. I know that you said that you don’t know everyone’s motives, but you made her the poster child for excess. And she took her time and made a gift and is being called out for it. You had a loving message but then did something a bit unloving, it seems.

  157. Ok, did anyone pay attention to what he actually said, or did you just jump down here halfway thru to show how offended you are? He specifically states that women who DO NOT LIKE to do these things but feel obligated to should stop and find another way to contribute. If you like to do these things, it was NOT targeted at you. That’s fantastic, and we need creative people out there. You guys should keep doing awesome things because that’s what you’re good at! But the women who see that and feel that they have something they need to measure up to or compete against should stop and find another way to contribute that they can actually be happy with. That’s all he was saying.

    • But his does he know if someone enjoys doing the crafty things? That isn’t his judgement to make. Just because it isn’t something he enjoys, it doesn’t mean that other crafty parents don’t enjoy it. So just let people do their crafty thing without judging.

      • Dee Dee

        Again, read the post. He clearly says if you’re one of those who love it, you should keep on keeping on. He also says that super crafter mom is likely not in it for the competition but does it because it brings her joy. The point, I believe, is that some of us feel OBLIGATED to make every gift bag super special all the time. And we shouldn’t feel that way. Period. That whatever we’re doing at whatever level is enough.

        Personally, our goodie bags are usually a small handful of candy in a nondescript bag tied with a twist tie. And the kids are happy every time.

  158. Stacy

    Slapping a ‘your good enough’ quote in this post doesn’t manically make it an empowering, positive thing. Be happy there are moms who make your kid smile by doing the things you don’t want to do and go in your way. Ironically, I’m not even one of them, I don’t own a glue gun or a bedazzler, but I am certainly thankful for the moms who make pet rocks with my kids during home room. You’re creating a negative environment by telling moms there’s a secret competition out there. We’re all on the same side, we all have something to offer, embrace our differences and move on.

    • DiannaM

      Amen! When my kids come home with a bag like this, I am grateful that there is someone that took the time to make my child feel special! And I usually ask my kids if they know who made the bags so I can THANK THEM!

      If these bags make you feel inferior, that is YOUR problem. If you are asked to help create something like this for your child’s classroom and it’s not your thing, just politely say you cannot help out with it. Maybe the lesson here should be more about learning to say “NO” rather than making those crafty moms stop what they are doing.

  159. Diane Grubb

    I am a mom that loves to do fun little things. I don’t always do them but love when I can! I am a working mom but have always loved crafts..I love to scrapbook etc. No one expects every parent to do this items. I do it because 1) I love to craft 2) it makes me forget about work for a while 3) my child helps and sends time with me 4) I like to give to others and hope that giving these teaches my kid that sometimes bringing joy to others give you s nice warm fuzzy feeling 5) I do it because some parents can’t! either they don’t have the time, the craftiness or the money…

  160. I found myself smiling in agreement, just enjoying this article. Then, I reaf the comments full of defensive darts. Why? Is it because people really do not read. Have we really reduced ourselves to shallow skimming of all that crosses our screen? Or, is that defensiveness why this article is written – because so few people know how to be confident and comfortable in their own, unique skin?

    • I read it and I agreed with half of it. Yea… Don’t do something if you don’t enjoy it and don’t make life a Competition. Are all running our own races there is no need to try and run someone else’s, however I disagreed with the part that said stop it because you’re making other moms feel bad. Or the snide little remark about being the “one mom” who enjoys being crafty. Yes it was made to be uplifting to some moms. I get that. But it just came across a little snide. I can be confident without being snide.

  161. Vera Weeks

    I say “whatever floats your boat.” If you feel the need and you have the time and money to make such cutesy crafty things for the kids then go for it. I won’t be offended because I know what I can do and what I’m unable to do and my son understands that. So whenever an act of kindness is bestowed upon us – we are eternally grateful. Hoping that at some point in the future I would be able to return the good deed. Which is exactly what has happened. Fast forward to HS days, and my son was involved in the school musicals. During rehearsals, to avoid the kids driving off campus parents (myself included) volunteered to bring in hot food for dinner for the entire cast and crew. Each day was a different menu and the Moms for that specific day would bring in food according to that day’s menu. All kids had hot meals, so as it may have cost me and others some $ the appreciation from the kids was priceless. Not all parents were able to do this as they didn’t have the time nor the $ to contribute, but that’s okay because to me that is what a community is all about. Each person helps out when they can without judgment from others. My point being that all parents will at some point will be able to do something for their child and their classmates at school, and that is fine. If you put the competition in your head then it will be a competition. I’d rather put it in my head that this Mom did a good deed and put smiles on the faces of children; my son included and for that I’m always grateful.

  162. T

    Stop saying “moms.” They are parents, and even if the vast majority are women, you’re reinforcing stereotypes and it’s a bit antiquated.

  163. Jessica

    For those who don’t want to do it then don’t…. “YOU ARE ENOUGH” too. It sounds like this post is try to validate “Moms who either aren’t creative or doesn’t have time for it”. That’s fine YOU ARE ENOUGH. But because you “don’t want to or have no time for it” don’t say “Just. Stop, It.” maybe you should take step back and say to yourself “just. stop. it. and know that YOUR ARE ENOUGH” And let me just tell you this…. my husband helps me do Birthdays, Seasonal Parties and ect…. he never grew up in a home that did stuff like that and his ex wife never did any of that either. I told him that was fine but do not make fun of me or make comments. My mom didn’t have a lot of money but she was the original Martha Stewart. She would make us handmade construction paper cards, sugar cookies, homemade candy and stuff for each holiday (even St. Patrick’s Day) she was a stay at home mom who was room mother, volunteer & everything we needed. She took that job as important as a traveling cooperate buisness women/mom would take her job. I fall very short to what my mom did, I don’t have a yard that looks like it could be in a magazine like hers, or garden, can & make perserves, bake fresh apple pies from the apple tree in our back yard, scrapbook Every. Single. Event. keep all the RBI, pitches & stuff for my kids games like she did….. but she truly enjoyed it all. But she would never tell someone that they should or shouldn’t be doing. Just my 2 cents

    • Stephanie

      This article never told women to stop making crafts. Ever. Nowhere in the article. It said to stop doing things you don’t like just to compete in an imaginary race.

  164. Robin

    Some moms really do enjoy it! So let them have their fun (it’s not hurting you at all). And stop comparing yourself to Crafty Mom, because that is what this is really about. How dare Crafty Mom go above and beyond with her craftiness and make you feel inadequate (sarcasm intended). It is so ridiculous to tell someone to stop doing what they love. How would you feel if someone told you to quilt a hobby of yours that made you feel happy? Adults need to get over themselves. The cute bags were for the kids, not the parents. Was your daughter excited about the bag? Yes. So there you go.

    • Kira

      Where do you see him telling crafty moms to stop? I can quote you the exact opposite from the article.

      Did you just read the title and jump to the comments?

  165. Camila Melchick

    I believe you are already reading the comments on defesive mode, please be open to this one.

    Try to take a deep breath, relax a little and don’t try to take other mom’s efforts as attacking you because you are busy, not crafty or any other reason you might think.

    Some people are crafty and enjoy do these things as a therapy! It probably makes them happy, and they have the time to do so, why not then?
    Compare it as a person that wakes up one hour earlier to do a perfect hair and make up to another person who doesn’t really care about and spends 10 min on this process. Is the same thing, some people will do these things because makes them feel good, other (like you) don’t care about. But, are you going to be the hater and be talking bad about the woman in beautiful make up just because you don’t care about doing on yourself???

    You said you are not a crafty person but I’m sure you have other qualities, don’t take as a “competition” as you said, don’t think people are judging you all the time, what really matters is the quality time you spend with your kids not be home for them all day.

    Now, having the kids decorate the bags does sounds like a resonable idea, although the age of the kids and the class schesule should be consider as well.

    Now, about parents do the work for the kids, i’m completely against as well, and it only teach wrong things to the kid. But in this case, they were not doing their homework, just doing something cute to congratulate them on the end of the school year. You should be happy about it 😉

  166. bev

    My problem is that, if inspiration happens to hit, I’m all in, but if it’s gone, it’s just not there…so sometimes you get wonderful, creative things and other times,….well, let’s just say, I’ve done my share of “whoops, that was today?”

  167. Marcy

    I’m laughing so hard that I am in TEARS!! Great post!

  168. Pingback: Step Away from the Glue Gun

  169. Joni Scott

    I have heard it all. Jealousy is a bad thing.

  170. Eva

    I am just so sad for you, that you can’t appreciate when people do something different or ‘better’ than you. At our school we have a Mom that’s craftier than heck, and honestly, we can’t wait to see what she will come up with next! She in no way makes me feel like less of a Mom, or that there is pressure to live up to her. Do I feel bad that your breakfast parfaits sound way better than my ‘toast or cereal’ routine? No. Grow up.

  171. peach0604

    I wouldn’ t call the processed junk in the bag “snacks.” I’d be very frustrated if my child came home with a load of crap like that- jellied sugar things that look like orange slices, goldfish crackers, etc. Also, yogurt & cereal are full of sugar-kind of cancels out the benefits of the fruit. The fruit with the hat sounded best. Kust draw on the google eyes with a sharpie & skip the extra work. He forgot to mention the extra parent work of managing kids full of sugar & dyes.

  172. Chereese

    This seems like such an insecure, petty post. I’m not a “crafty mom,” but it seems small and almost like something a jealous catty person would write.

  173. A great friend of ours received a phone call from the lead choir mom asking her to join in this summer on all the kind of things described in this post. Our friend gave an awesome response, “I appreciate the invitation, but let me be clear up front, choir is my daughter’s activity, not mine.” Loved it!

  174. Ellen

    I get it. I do not enjoy those crafty type things. My gift is music, so I contribute that when I can and opt out of all things crafty. I think being an “older” parent has its benefits in that we are little more laid back. I love parents who are crafty and I think that the googly eyes are beautiful and make kids feel special. I just leave it to the parents who like being crafty. Perhaps that is what the writer meant? Don’t do it out of guilt?

    • I hope that’s what the writer meant! I’m jealous of your musical talent (in a good way). I’m crafty but not musical! I am grateful for people like you who will give my children the opportunity to learn something that I never had the chance to!

  175. My kids rip off those cutesy craft things, that I later pick up off the floor, and eat the snacks. The author is so correct, do it only if it makes you feel good, but don’t do it thinking it’s a craft competition because your recipients only care what flavors the snacks are, not that you used a glitter pen!

  176. Micah

    Read the post. Read some of the replies. As a single mom who was a former very married, very pintresty, stay-at-home-and-glue-googly-eyes-on-everything mom, I appreciate this post emphatically! I went from “Leave it to Beaver” to the mom who has zero energy to remember to go through the take-home folders every night after work. I had to give up the idea that I could be that cool mom that knows how to whip out that hot glue gun. I had to learn that what I do “is enough”.

    Now, with that said, I so appreciate those moms who have the blessing of time and craftiness to conjure up these cute gifts for my kids. Thank you ladies (and gents if you’re out there). I give you kudos for investing time into my kids lives in that small way.

  177. Some people are just crafty. They like it. If that’s not you’re thing, don’t worry about it. There’s no need to judge each other, either way.

  178. Carole Anne Patterson

    So…I laughed when I read the article and I am that Mom. No apologies for being that Mom. I’m getting ready for an 8th Grade Breakfast at school, the fry boxes are embossed with stars and trimmed with “Shine like Stars in the Universe”, little grad caps and a few treats. I’m going to defend those “crafty Mom’s”. I do it because it’s my thing and I love it! I do it for the kids and not to make any other Mom feel inadequate nor do I want to feel inadequate because it’s my thing. I look for an economical way to make the little things special. We all have our strengths. I may not be interested in climbing the corporate ladder in the business world but in my own element — I am the boss. Thank GOD we all have our strengths and as women, we all should empower each other and appreciate the differences. SO if you don’t have the time to make things, hire me to make your goodies!!! It will be a win-win.

  179. We already know we are enough. The things you speak of are usually done from the heart – and yes there are some out there trying to ‘look’ better than their peers – but give us some credit – we recognize this and have enough confidence in ourselves to not let it bother us or even notice! I bet the person who did the end of the school year bag for your daughter wanted it to be special and added those fun little touches so it carried more heartfelt meaning for the 2nd graders. A little something extra to create a positive bridge to the children’s next school experience and celebrate their accomplishments in the past school year. This blog just really rubbed me the wrong way. I felt like I was being talked down to. Mother of 4.

  180. Alison

    I loved this post, and it’s so true, we have turned every stepping stone into an extravaganza of celebratios. I totally get the moms and dads who like to do this, but some of us just don’t have the time to give it a thought. The same goes for birthday parties, it just seems like everyone has to out do each other. Whatever happened to pizza and pin the tail on the donkey? Now it’s rock walls, and banquet halls. Unfortunately, some parents are feeling obligated to do all the bells and whistles, as the child demands, no matter the financial stress it puts on the family.

  181. Nichol

    It’s not only mommies out there, “parents” is more accurate for future reference

  182. Jane Fraser

    My daughter is now 28 years old! And yes all these things were around when she was in school! She was the one that taught us in second grade that we were good enough just as we were, as parents and as people! I am not crafty, but I am kind, considerate, loving, and understanding, which I instilled in her! Her father has a great work ethic, treats everyone the same, is selfless when it comes to his family, and has taught her what a real man is and how a real man should treat her! She will be 29 soon! Please moms and dads don’t let anyone else stress you out or guilt you into spending your time with your children their way! Stick with what you think is important! You will be very happy you did! You will be surprised what your children remember!

    • Jane Fraser

      I know this family and they are a fantastic example of what’s important! Education, building real self esteem, fun birthday parties planned by their daughter, picnics, etc. Not silly things things that kids don’t even notice and toss aside! That’s just competition between parents!

  183. Like the writers rant stated most women place the stress on themselves. If a parent is talented and crafty enough to do these things for not only her children but their class mates then Good bless her. I hope her kids appreciate all she does for them. Everyone contributes in their own way and we as women need to applaud each other’s strengths and and support their weakness. We also need to STOP beating ourselves down if we feel we don’t measure up to a standard that we create.

  184. Dot elrick

    So glad there was not facebook when my girls were small because I would have hated to try to keep up with everything everyone posted showing how talented etc they are.

  185. Daphne Brune

    Ladies, ladies, please. If you’re about to post an angrily defensive comment about this blog post, please go read it again. Thoroughly. He’s not bashing on anyone.

  186. Emmi

    I find this part interesting:

    ” A survey of 7,000 women show that their average stress level is 8.5 out of 10. Nearly 50% report suffering from “Pinterest Stress” – not feeling crafty enough. And three out of four say “the pressure they place on themselves is worse than any pressure or judgment they get from other moms.”

    My stress level is easily 8.5 out of ten. And it has exactly NOTHING to do with googly eyes on a fruit cup. It has to do with me being the primary breadwinner for our house, the one who’s job provides all our medical coverage (this right here is 7 out of 10 off the bat – one layoff and we’re struggling to pay for food and mortgage and coverageless. Not a good system in this country. And no, we don’t live beyond our means and we do have savings) while still being Mom – which means I also meal plan, grocery shop, cook, do laundry, do dishes, clean the bathroom, represent at PTA meetings, help with homework, make sure school supplies are available, note birthday parties and social obligations on the calendar and then make sure we are ready for them, write out and pay the monthly bills, and so on. Oh, and I’m also supposed to find time to exercise, get my hair done, and all that other stuff so I look “hot” because pressure never goes away. Or if you prefer, I need to be skinny and exercise because HEALTHY. (not really, we all know it’s because women are expected to be ornamental. We just try to dress it up by claiming ‘health’) Plus along with being Worker Bee and Mom, I am also a wife, a sister, a daughter, a friend, and a million other roles that have obligations that come with them too. That’s a hell of a lot of plates to keep spinning in the air.

    Sticking some googly eyes on a fruit cup may in fact be the only way I feel I **have** accomplished something, that I **have** succeeded. Getting grins from the kids may be the one validation I get today. So leave me alone with my googly eyes, I am tired of other people telling me to knock it off when I am doing something I enjoy.

    • Multiplemama

      👆 She is my hero! I feel Much More stress to be “Hot” than crafty, which is natural. Next time I see a skinny 18yr old running faster than me at the gym I’m going to unplug the treadmill & tell her to stop trying so hard 😉 LOL….LOL!

  187. Pingback: Overachieving Moms | Dreaming Of Mommyhood

  188. Kelly kc

    I had to read it twice because I really don’t understand why it all had to be said.

    Most people know what their gifts and talents really are. But for those of us who like the sometimes corny encouragement projects we do for others, regardless if some don’t get it or appreciate it. That’s ok!!

    For those that it may have helped, or brought a quick smile, even the rolling of their eyes, in this world today to have been able to be s small spark of sunshine, or laughter, my job was done!

    Seems like he’s never had that. Cause if he did, he would be making an overwhelming case as to why those who would love to do such things, but out of fear it won’t be accepted. DO YOU!! One never knows the awesome encouraging or if just for a moment one was able to smile, laugh maybe even cry to relieve themselves if for just a moment of the many pressures and stresses of life.

    It also allows for the so seriously me to be able to get a good laugh sometimes out of the things that I’ve actually came up with.☺️ But exciting when one gets it, right off the bat, then it also brings a little peace to me, letting me know I’m not all that crazy!😜

    Let folks be!😘

  189. MomInLA

    No one would ever tell a paid employee to stop being so driven or to stop putting pressure on themselves to impress people. When you have paid employment you’re celebrated for working hard and being ambitious. However, if you’re a mom or dad who excels at fabulous birthday parties or creative gift bags (or even someone who doesn’t excel at it, but is trying to keep up with others who do), you’re accused of creating more stress in the world. Why can’t we celebrate people who are good at this stuff, just like we celebrate teachers, doctors etc… who are good at their jobs?

  190. klm1974

    I think of the many children in my school district that get very little in a positive way from their home environment. This kind of stuff may be the only bright spot in their day. Something that shows that somebody out there cares just a little. School to some is a sanctuary and these kinds of “silly things” might make their day. I work full time, long shifts, so I get your annoyance, but it’s the Facebook braggers that annoy me more. Our kids are lucky, they get way more in a day in the way of support and live than some kids will get in a week. Next time you get one of these bags, think about the other kids…

  191. Karen

    I love the crafty stuff, and I do the crafty stuff NOT for the adults but for the kids and for me. If you want us to stop, what do you want us to stop doing? Stop being a memorable part of kids lives, stop wanting kids to enjoy their childhood, stop wanting them to be kids. I only want my crafts to bring joy to myself and others. With the nonstop testing and assessing kids need to remember that learning, school and their childhood is fun and enriching. Anything that we has parents, helpers and adults that are with children can do to enrich kids lives is a plus. Think back to when you were a kid, what do you remember? Do you remember that one mom was better at anything? No, you remember that someone cared enough to do something special for you. Not everyone enjoys crafting and the ones that do should be able to craft as they want and not be made fun of or compared to anyone else. Please remember that most of the time the crafty things are done out of caring and just wanting to make kids happy.

  192. mlfcnt99

    Amen! And AMEN!!!! I admit I am VERY crafty BUT when its Valentine’s my kids pick out the box of cards they want and get this parents…THEY WRITE THEIR OWN TO AND FROM ON IT THEMSELVES! 😉 That’s its. No mustache. No print off. Just the cheesy heart sticker included in the box to seal it. Maybe at the most the sucker if it was included. I am so worn out by parents living through and stealing the basic joys and memories of a kids life. Don’t even get me started on sports leagues and post game “snacks”….its like freaking Christmas after every game.
    Granola bars are enough.
    A Capri Sun is enough.
    My rant over…lol

  193. Teresa

    These bags and their contents are adorable! They have good messages on them too. This is a way to celebrate their age and I don’t think there is anything wrong with it. I personally like to make people happy and I like to see people smile., This is something I would do and it doesn’t matter what the grouchy parents think. If the kids liked it and felt special then job well done!!

  194. Multiplemama

    No! No I will not! I am Susie Craftsalot. We all show love our own way. Crafting is what I’m good at, it is effortless for me. Crafting is my happy place, my reward for drudging through mountains of laundry. You were suppose to feel special not threatened or inadequate. Am I to feel inadequate when you blog, or belittle your efforts? I didn’t just step off the tarmac at 12am feeling good for closing the big deal. I don’t depose witnesses for multimillion dollar cases. I didn’t just close out an internal audit for GM. I didn’t give back an elderly patient her vision after cataract surgery. (Although, I do rejoice with my friends when they succeed & think they’re really cool.) I make kids smile & adults chuckle with my silly crafts….

    Now, if Missy Drawerorganizer wants to show me some love & organize my craft closet; I’d think she’s cool! 😉

  195. I think some folks really missed the point of this post. Some people really like being creative and have a talent for it. Some people don’t have the time or the energy to be able to devote several hours to projects like this. The author was simply saying that those of us who don’t have the time/talent/cash shouldn’t feel pressured to do what others do. That said, while the treats were cute and meant for a special occasion, all I can see is a huge bag of sugar. LOL

  196. Dancer

    if you read the article thoroughly, he is telling the women who feel pressure to do this sort of thing just to keep up to stop it. The worst thing he did was make a joke about how the crafty moms are training mice and learning how to ride a unicycle. Hopefully we can all take a joke.

  197. Tracy

    I’m a crafty mom and I didn’t take offense to this post at all. What’s being said is cut yourself some slack as a mom. I don’t try to make everything I hand out a project. I pick what I want and make is special. Moms (and dads) try too hard to compete. God gave each of us talents to use. Do what makes you happy, parenting is not a competition.

  198. Tina Tucker

    All I can say is, wow! You should probably keep your advice to yourself. Just because you are self absorbed, lack an imagination for crafty ideas, and clearly do not think putting an extra effort forth for children is noticed by children does not mean the over whelming majority of adults are the same. Stress of adult women comes from real life problems not passing moments of worry over how best to make children’s lives a little brighter, if even only for a moment. If people are not into crafty things then they do not participate in such things.

    Maybe the unsolicited and ridiculous advice you have given, here, is based on your feelings of inadequacy, which are unnecessary. As a parents we all have our strengths. So what if being crafty is not one of them. I myself am not a crafty parent but do have my moments now and then and can say when I do, it makes me feel good to know that I was able to do something to brighten, if only for a fleeting moment, the childrens’ lives. I do not worry about what other parents think as the purpose of the crafty ideas is to generate a smile from the child receiving the item/s.

    Focus on your strengths, don’t view life as a competition, and above all else, Stop thinking that because you are an adult that your views, beliefs, and ideals are held by all or most other adults simply because you share the same title of “Grown Up”.

  199. GoodGodYall

    So, for those, untutored in the fine art of suburban backhanded insult, lemme translate:

    “but we spend far too much time and effort worrying about what others will think, forgetting that most don’t even notice. And those few who do are likely too self-absorbed to be a true friend to you anyway.”

    Translation: “Ugh, like, why do you even do this? Do you think anyone CARES? No one cares about you or what you’re doing. They just wish you’d stop. Do you even HAVE any real friends?”

    “No more made-up competition.”

    Translation: “You think you’re BETTER than me. When I make parfaits in the morning for my children, that’s a fancy cool thing that cool people do. But YOUR hobbies are just dummypants.”

    ” Like a professional stylist had just prepped them for the red carpet at some weird awards ceremony for pre-packaged snacks.”

    Translation: “NEEEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRRRDDDD!” *Makes L sign on forehead*

    “And I realize the inherent hypocrisy of my statement, since I am guilty of adding a bit of “flair” to the breakfast parfaits from time-to-time.”

    Translation: “C’mon, bro, we’re just messing around! And because I said that for one second, the past half hour of abuse is justified!”

    “So now we’re all working to impress Susie Craftsalot, hoping to measure up.”

    Translation: “Susie Craftsalot. You know. Like a little child cutting out paper snowflakes at the kiddy table. Not like ADULTS do. Grow up.”

    ” Not because she thinks she’s better, but because she’s honestly, genuinely surrounded by the intrinsic joy of making creative stuff.”

    Translation: “You felt frustrated at one point doing this really nice thing for everyone? I guess you’re just faking it huh? You’ll never measure up to this person I just made up to insult you with, but that you should also be more like before you do anything she does.”

    This is a classic exercise in passive agressive. They should study it in friggin’ college.

    • Meg

      Yes! You said what I felt after reading this.

    • Mike


      We have (at least) one wonderful lady who, whether she actually has the time or not, goes through these very efforts – and with similarly impressive skill. Best of all, she *doesn’t* do it as a competition and in fact, goes out of her way to show appreciation for and admire the efforts of anyone who participates.

      Kudos to her and all those like her because they care enough to 1) do *something*, 2) use her skills to make others happy, 3) not only not do it slap-dash, but even excel at it, and 4) realize it’s FOR THE KIDS – not to make trigger your guilty conscience.

      But no, instead of appreciating that these kids might have a good memory of their last day of the school year (and a positive inspiration to keep going), this person has, instead, seemingly turned a kind act into a rant about their self-perceived inadequacies. Transference, much?

      No, sorry. The real people here in Suburbia don’t buy it. We are thankful for those amongst us who CAN do this – and we don’t feel guilty when all we can chip in is perhaps a plate of un-decorated homemade crisp rice treats, some store-bought packages of cookies, or even just a few moments of our time to help put up the decorations. I may not be the the star of the show – but I’m happy to help in whatever way I can.

      So, to the person who jotted this little fancy down Bitterness lane:

      Yes, we ARE enough (unless we *could* do something but *choose* to do nothing at all) – and thank you for saying so – but so also are those who create these wonderful gifts. I’m sure the children appreciate them. Perhaps you should try, as well.

      • Amy

        Thank you for this!!!! I was actually offended by this article because I’m “one of those moms”. I too have a busy schedule, business owner, and mother of too very active boys & wife. It’s not a competition, it’s not to make anyone feel bad, it’s not for a blue ribbon…. it’s for the kids!!!! I don’t always go all pinterest out, but those tiny added gestures can make a kid feel super good, just as good as a plain rice krispie bar. Instead of feeling bitter, and telling these moms to stop maybe be grateful for the parents that do these things for the kids and nothing more. Crafty people tend to go overboard… let us do it! 😉

      • Maureen

        Your message is well said. I agree with it completely!

    • Kelli

      Yes! She is bitter! So what if others want to do that for these kids!

    • Yes!!! My reaction was a HUGE eyeroll. Yours was better.

    • Chip on your shoulder much… You are reading way too much into this.

    • Stephane in AK

      I’m one of the moms who enjoys doing this kind of thing. I thought this bag was particularly well-done, charming and sweet. I guess I now know how some people regard my efforts. 😔

      • Sarah

        Stephanie, as another one of those moms, I feel exactly the same way. But since we do these things for the kids and for our own enjoyment, I agree to not give a “flying unicorn fart” what they think. Unless I happen come across a blog post insultingly dissecting a goody bag I put together. Then I’d be upset by the sheer tackiness of the post. To everyone else, be crafty, or don’t be…but either way let’s lay off the judgements. As for me, I’m T-minus 30 days until my son’s 6th birthday party, and I really need to get back to my fairy turds.

      • Fairy turds and bluebirds

        I’m not one of those moms but believe me your efforts are truly appreciated. If my daughter had brought home this bag we would have spent ages looking at everything and talking about how cool it was. We would have also sent you a thank-you note. Unlike the author of this article I believe showing appreciation when people do something nice for you is important.

    • You sound bitter and critical. Appreciate the thought and effort put into this bag.

    • Andrea

      Amen to this comment! Why do some parents feel the need to pass judgment on other parents? Can’t we all just agree that we all have something different to offer, and be grateful for the strengths of others that fill in our weak spots? I, for one, am grateful for parents who take time to make my kids feel loved and seen…especially in areas that I fall short (like creating cute handouts and volunteering to help in school).

    • AMRS

      Is there a like button.

  200. Jeri

    I refuse to recognize ANYTHING labeled graduation until end of high school!

    • Jennifer M

      Thank you!! So refreshing to know I’m not the only one who thinks this exact same though!!

    • Ginger

      Here, here! Kids don’t “graduate” from preschool or kindergarten or even elementary school or junior high. They just move to the next grade. And the gifts and the goodies and the praise are over the top. “Congratulations junior, you just farted!” I agree with the article’s author! Stop it! Aside from the fact the entire contents of the “You’re such an awesome 6-year-old” bag is full of sugar and crap!

  201. Adalyn

    In the amount of time she took to write that blog post she could of been doing something more time worthy. I’d rather be hot glueing eyeballs on oranges than whining about a mom that does. I just don’t find the bother in this at all. If your stressed about crafts I don’t know how you’ll survive very long.

  202. I find it ironic that this column/post is written by a man who, with his wife, “quit (his) corporate career(s) to spend a year doing mission and volunteer work in Guatemala.” Talk about over-achievers!

    • Mike

      Exactly, Molly! You would think someone who professes to volunteer so much of their time would not find fault with someone else who volunteers their time, as well. O.o

  203. No I don’t go all out like this. For the moms who do? I applaud them and admire them, and they are the mom I aspire to be. The kids truly love it. I’ve seen my son go crazy over stuff like that. Do I expect it from parents/teachers? No. Is it lovely to see the kids so happy? Yes. That’s why they do it. For that (all be it fleeting) two to five minutes of pure joy a child experiences from a funny mustache taped to an orange. It’s the little things. Let the moms who want to do so without judging them about it. They have their reasons. Not every crafty cookie is made in the hopes of one-upping the other parents. It’s a collective. I don’t like that you’ve determined hardly any moms actually do this for the right reasons…you don’t know unless you are psychic and can know all parents’ thoughts when they do awesome stuff like this. 🙂

  204. Lindsay

    I don’t think any Mom’s should stop doing what they love, especially if it makes kids feel special. Its possible that some child in any class doesn’t get the love and acknowledgment from family members at home. Maybe that gift bag was all the acknowledgement they got after passing from one grade to the next. Loving our kids, the kids in the classroom has never been a competition, even as a PTA Mom and volunteer and now a working Mom. We do it out of love. This makes me very sad.
    Like · Reply · Just now

  205. Crafty mama

    “you are enough”…unless you are crafty or artistic.

  206. Nicole

    I agree with the not competing with each other. Ever. If this kind of thing is your thing, then go for it. If it’s not, NO ONE is making you feel guilty but YOU. I don’t like his backhanded insulting of the nice mom who did this–who probably found it relaxing, not stressful. But if you DO find it stressful, then don’t worry about what SHE did. JUDGMENT. We all need to stop that.

  207. jen

    More to the point……where the hell did all these gift bags come from?? Since when do we have to reward kids with candy for passing 1st grade? Why does every child at a birthday party get a gift?? I think we have all gone over the top with believing we have to celebrate every tiny achievement with candy and inspirational quotes. Does anyone over 40 remember getting gift bags, trophies, or ribbons just for participating?? And we wonder why we have a new generation of spoiled,entitled kids.

    • Shannon

      Exactly. Ain’t nobody got time for that. 😂

    • Kathy Slankard

      I completely agree with you. My kids are now grown, and survived very well without being overly recognized for going from first to second grade. I truly appreciate the crafty people around me (I am not) and their creativity and imagination. BUT, I don’t think our kids benefit from recognition for every normal right of passage. Graduating elementary school, junior high, high school – absolutely. But not for just showing up.

    • Yes, this. Exactly. We wonder why kids are: Entitled, spoiled, world revokes around them. And then we bend over backwards to reward them on the last day of school. Guess what, it’s a privilege to go to school depending on what country you’re in. Kids should be reminded of that instead of fussed over. Crafting is fine. Over indulgence not.

      • nikki

        “Bend over backwards to reward kids on the last day of school”? With that over the top, indulgent, going to create a generation of entitled kids, bag of snacks? (insert sarcasm here). I think they SHOULD be rewarded for their year of hard work. I wonder how people feel when they don’t get a raise after a year of hard work at their jobs. Guess what…having a job is a privilege depending on the economy where you live. Adults who don’t get a raise should be reminded of that instead of fussed over with more money in their paychecks. Calm down.

      • Yes nicki “bend over backwards” it’s silly. A simple word of praise goes a long way.

      • And a job is a privilege as well. No boss is going to craft them a reward for doing what they’re supposed to be doing.

    • It's me

      For me, this is the bigger issue rather than all the craftiness. Why do the kids need this junk? They are being overly compensated for doing what they are supposed to be doing.

      And please don’t fool yourself that the kids remember or even enjoy it. It’s for mom-petition rights ONLY. Maybe a small few of the children enjoy it but most don’t notice, are confused by it (“is this is a craft or can we eat it?”), or straight up don’t care. They rip it open and eat the treat. Believe me, I’ve been to enough class room parties to see this.

  208. Sounds a little bitter to me. how about we stop judging each other and just let people do what makes them happy?

    • jenny ha

      I was thinking the same thing! If the teacher wants to have fun with some end of year gifts then let them enjoy themselves! It’s nice to see a teacher who puts so much effort on something for YOUR kids! If the teacher opened a box of chips ahoy – you would complain they were lazy…smh

  209. “And I realize the inherent hypocrisy of my statement, since I am guilty of adding a bit of “flair” to the breakfast parfaits from time-to-time.”
    Your not a hypocrite, you’re even worse. You Sir are a HUMBLEBRAG! and no one likes false humility.

  210. I appreciate all the Susie Craftsalot…and I am not..I’m a pinterest copy cat…but if a mom wants to make a cute big deal out of a 1st grade completion LET HER. No one is trying to make you feel bad, only you can do that. Look at it like we all did with a big ‘Awwwww, that’s so cute’. Stop taking life so seriously and recognize, it’s not all about you. Its sometimes for your littles…:)

  211. Gretchen

    Newsflash…you’re totally wrong here. Most mothers in the real world are not made to feel inadequate by their lack if craftiness and there is certainly no competition between mothers over said craftiness. Most (if not all) who do this are doing it because they enjoy it. Those who don’t enjoy the crafty stuff don’t do it. End of story.

  212. Janine B

    Everyone should just do their own thing and be proud of that. I have a situation right now that I can’t legally work. It’s an immigration thing-legal resident but not able to work-so I do the PTA/PTO/PTG things. I am the Scout Troop Leader and sometimes I do crafts for my kids’ classes. I commend those parents that work and take business trips and make parfaits for breakfast-I don’t/can’t do that. I don’t whine about it or tell you to stop, I do my own thing and move on. If someone is competing, that’s their issue not mine.

  213. Dissarray

    A two second email to the mom who made this thanking her for adding a smile on my kid’s face would have been enough writing. The rest of the time writing this bitter posting might have been better spent enjoying the love you have around you. More of that might make you like yourself a little more.

    Maybe, like yourself, this mom just tried to “leave the world better than [she] found it.” We can’t all be as great as you.

  214. crinwil

    sounds like you are the one who is feeling competitive….this bag of thoughtful decorated treats was not a good example of mom competitiveness. ( which CAN be brutal)

  215. Amy

    Chillax, writer. When someone does something nice for you the proper response is “Thanks”. Why do you need to dis’ this awesome Mom for using her talents. We all share our talents in different ways and this gal’s talent is clever crafts. Celebrate it. No one expects YOU to replicate it. Hey, maybe your talent is writing and you share that. Should we start talking behind your back about what an asshole you are for being such a good writer? Now, I am more of a science lady. I did an awesome presentation for the 3rd grade class 4 years ago. At the end we drank “blood”. The kids still talk about it and the teacher loved it, and they learned a ton. The project wasn’t about my ego it was about giving. Maybe your class Mom felt the same.

  216. Sam Mix

    I think the competition is in *your* head. You’re not confident that your efforts, big or small –or even no effort at all– are good enough. For whom? I guarantee your kid loves you, despite your low self-esteem. We crafty moms don’t scrutinize you as much as you think we do. Ever. I mean, do you go to a mall and badmouth fashion designers because they make cute clothes? Do you order a steak and blog about the uppity rancher who thinks he’s so hot as to raise a tasty bull? You could make your own clothes and raise your own cattle, but do not criticize those moms (crafters & rafters, sewists & cowgirls) for doing their thing well and sharing with others. I assume you choose not to do those particular activities (above) that give great pleasure to others. So what. (And who’s to say that *moms* made all those cute gifts anyway?)

  217. Renee Tucker

    Crafting us my stress reliever. I do it for me, and the children do enjoy it. My children’s friends do remember special little things too. That’s why I do it. It makes memories for people. There’s so much bad in the world, why be upset when someone takes time to put a smile on a face. If you don’t appreciate someone doing something good, I see a cranky old lady living alone some day. I could go on and on, but don’t want to waste anymore time on unappreciative people.

  218. nikki

    I’m not sure if someone else has already mentioned this or not (i didn’t read all 395 comments) but I’m feeling very bad for the mom who went to all the trouble of making this nice bag for Scott’s daughter. It’s one thing to write a general blog post about this “issue” but to actually include the pictures of the specific items that set him off is just mean spirited. If that mom doesn’t read his blog, I’m sure someone in their community does and he has just humiliated her publicly. Scott’s bio says that he “makes a living traveling the country talking to people about how to think better” and to ” leave the world better than they found it.” Well, great job Scott. Publicly flogging the mother of one of your daughter’s classmates will certainly make the world a better place. Some mom’s are crafty. Some mom’s coach the kids soccer and lacrosse teams. Some mom’s volunteer at the school. Every mom has their niche. The ONLY thing i will agree with Scott on is that mom’s need to stop feeling the need to compete with one another. I am more than happy to make a child an end of the year gift bag because i thank god that another mom wants to coach the soccer team!

    • MG

      I am not 100% positive (and I fully agree with your comments and those of the others who disagree with his post) but I think the mom who made this stuff for his daughter’s class is his wife. I could see my husband writing an article like this and I’d kick him in the teeth for it! I think the pictures are of stuff his wife made — again, I could be wrong.

  219. Beth

    I am just fine with lookiing at the situations describe in these blogs and just sighing. I understand that I don’t possess these skills and I am OK with that. I struggle to juggle the demands of home and career each week, and at times I wish I could be a stay a home, crafty kind of mom. What we all need is a greater appreciation for individual talents, in both adults and in kids. If we were a less competitive and focused on our own beliefs, we as a society, would be better off.

  220. Kim

    I think all the people making such awful comments toward this writer completely MISSED THE POINT he was trying to make. The point is his wife is NOT the type to enjoy doing this crafty shit however makes herself crazy doing it because it’s what the “suburban super mom” is expected to do and therefore feel guilty if they don’t probably because they work or have about a billion and one other things that need to be done. He’s clearly trying to get his wife and other moms who aren’t “Susie Craftsalot” to stop making themselves batshit crazy over stuff kids are just going to toss in the trash anyway because they are amused by it for all of 2.3 seconds….if at all.

    • It's me

      YES! I completely got the same message and didn’t realize that some were missing the point. But I guess people’s own bias always take a front seat to actually listening to others.

  221. Carol

    I don’t usually comment on these articles, but this one struck a nerve with me. Maybe because I am a craft nerd. I’ve been this kind of nerd/loser since I was a kid. I sucked at school, I didn’t go to college, I worked from the time I was 16. I got craftier in my 20’s long before I had kids. I consider it my therapy. I pour a big class of wine and make stuff, and trust me, there are no bluebirds singing outside my window and nobody singing “Whistle While You Work.” I don’t do it to impress anyone, and I don’t give a shit what people think. But honestly, this is just another case of Mom bullying. I don’t judge the moms who are perfectly coiffed and ready for work, the moms who drop their kids off in the tennis outfits ready to hit the courts (I live in FL, so this is all the time) or the chicks in the yoga pants ready to hit the gym. The moms who show up in pajamas, who gives a shit?! Then of course the moms who don’t let there kids have sugar, or only organic or the ones that send twinkles in their kids lunches, how does it affect anyone? If one is doing it because she feels she has to keep up, then yes, stop. Don’t do it. But I feel the mom wars are so horrible and intimidating. I have a certain luxury in my life right now, I’m 47, been married for 25 years and I have a 14 yr old son and 3 yr old daughter. I literally am not influenced by anyone, but myself. I do not care what the other moms think. Been there, done that. We all have our shit, good, bad and ugly. That’s the reality. Just let everyone be!

  222. zener

    You forget its only about entertaining the kids the adults dont even count for this stuff

  223. Harmony Stewart

    Nice way to make something special into something negative. How do you know her kids didn’t help make those? They were probably so proud to hand them out to their classmates. You sound like a cynical jealous b****. Instead of writing an article complaining about special sweet gestures from others why don’t you take the time to make some cookies with your kids or do a little craft project to make something special for their teacher. Ridiculous article.

    • Harmony, I was just thinking the same thing. As I stated in my comment, I honestly don’t really do stuff like this for my son’s class. But I truly appreciate those who are kind enough to make the time. Maybe, just maybe, a mom made crafty treats for a class and her kids helped, and it was a really fun family activity. This rant isn’t even from the POV of a mother, and Accidental Missionary guy doesn’t know what’s going on in each parents’ head. Making a craft with your kids is loads better than “sit them in front of their tablet time.” And even if the kids didn’t help, still, good on parents for doing such a sweet gesture for the kiddos. Geesh.

  224. Yes yes yes, a thousand times yes!

  225. I really want a retraction of this blog. Poo.

  226. spritequeen

    This post cracks me up, actually – especially everyone that got all bent out of shape about it. It’s TRUTH and everybody knows it. Keeping up with the Jones’ kids is just as important as keeping up with their parents to a LOT of people – and everybody knows it, whether they admit to it or not. To me, he didn’t say ‘don’t be crafty at all’. To me, he’s saying don’t feel like you HAVE to be crafty to be a good parent. There’s a BIG difference! Not everyone has a craft room in their house decked out with the latest decorative scissors. Some people are not financially capable of such a set up, and some wouldn’t use it anyway, because that’s just not one of their talents. It DOESN’T make them ANY less of a loving parent! Whether your send your kid to school with a smiley-faced orange, or just a kiss on the forehead, your good parenting is NOT defined by your crafting skills.

    • nikki

      You’re quite right when you say, “To me, he’s saying don’t feel like you HAVE to be crafty to be a good parent.” I agree 1000%. But he could have made that point without insulting every single person that is crafty because they WANT to be.

  227. …said the Dad who deep down feels a little bit guilty about the amount of stuff he has or hasn’t done. Stop blogging and pick up a pair of scissors and a bottle of glue. And one day, when your grandson shows you with pride what his Mommy made for his whole class you will finally understand why she did it. And then say Thank you

  228. DJ

    My comment is not regarding the craftiness of the accessories on the items, but rather the items themselves. When did these things become snacks? In my opinion, other than the orange, everything else pictured is a treat. As in a “once in a while” treat. I think it’s time we made a change in the amount of goodies and sugar that is allowed in schools in the form of both school snacks, lunches, and birthday treats. My daughter’s preschool does a great job of allowing kids to only bring in their favorite fruit or vegetable to share for their birthday. I’ve never heard of a kid complain that they got strawberries or carrots instead of a cupcake.

    • Sarah

      JUST STOP THIS…my goodness the moms that obsess over their kids eating tend to have be the ones out of shape and lazy. Perhaps that’s why they over obsess… get some exercise and eat a balanced diet. A women complaining over gold fish crackers not being carrot sticks sounds like she needs to find better things to worry about.

  229. Jennie

    Sorry. I’m one of those mom’s. I love to do stuff like this. It’s not about competition, it’s about doing something nice and being creative.

  230. Craftymom4life

    Wow!!!! I am absolutely appalled by the negativity of whoever wrote this! I am a mom that loves to craft as well and when I do it for my daughters class or her birthday, it brings pure joy to see the kids faces light up in excitement! It is never to “one up” anybody or make any other parent feel bad about themselves! Anybody who has the time to write a ridiculous blog tearing someone down for what they love to do and bringing a smile to your child’s face should be ashamed of themself. As a parent you should teach your children respect and acceptance for others, not how to tear people apart, especially when last time I checked “crafting” didn’t hurt anybody!

    • Craftymom4life

      Ok after re-reading the article, I will have to apologize for such a quick, defensive response. While it could have been written differently to make the point a little more clear, the second time reading it I saw the article in a different light. For those that felt the same way I did initially, he is actually asking the moms that aren’t crafty to stop stressing themselves out trying to match those that are because it’s not a competition. I think the way it was written though made it come across as an attack on crafty moms

  231. Pingback: A response to The Accidental Missionary | 3lists

  232. Pat

    somewhere in the text it is said: …..’Some folks love to do this kinda’ thing, and that’s totally cool.’…..
    so why the defensive fuss???

  233. Jenny

    The writer didn’t make very clear, but the photos make clear: the bag is filled with treats and snacks that have been contributed to by multiple moms. His wife was the one who had to put graduation hats on the fruit cups. Notice that the fruit cup is one of the goodies in the bag. That implies the other goodies came from other moms, some sort of group parental contribution to the graduation day, some of whom may have enjoyed making the snacks cute, some of whom may not have. He’s trying to tell the ones who didn’t enjoy it (i.e., his wife) to stop worrying about it, but in the process has managed to offend those who did.

  234. Jason


    You wrote a book about not buying anything from Amazon.

    Look out, “Eat Pray Love,” we’ve got real life lessons over here.


  235. Trish P

    Actually, I can’t just take a box of chips ahoy to the school anymore. Because it’s not healthy enough to be allowed. I’m no longer allowed to make decisions about what to send my kids for lunch either, apparently someone other than me is better suited to parent them from afar.

  236. Beverly

    Seems a tiny bit nasty for a person devoted to serving others and God.

  237. Maritza

    I don’t do this for Susie, or for the other kids or for whoever else it is I’m supposedly trying to impress. At the end of the day, I drive myself crazy doing these silly things because A) I can, I’m home, why not?! And B) I LOVE seeing the excitement in my kids eyes when the table is all decked out for some fun craft time. To each his own. Personally, if someone has a problem with my ‘Pinterest addiction’, they have bigger problems then I do. 😛

  238. Kristen

    just FYI – some moms truly do enjoy things like this. And aren’t doing it to one-up the rest of the moms. So maybe this little rant is a little unfounded.

  239. Brenna

    Look, Like the blogger, I’m not a “crafty” person. But, in my 23 years as a mom, I’ve learned that some people are. It’s in their DNA. That ability to think of clever ways to do the everyday. As long as Susie Craftsalot isn’t demeaning to us uncrafty folk, let her do her thing. It makes her happy, and, it makes my kid happy. A win-win situation. This is yet another mommy war not worth fighting.

  240. Fairy turds and bluebirds

    So let me get this straight… A couple of creative and involved parents went to the trouble of making an amazing end of year bag for your daughter and her classmates and your response was to publicly ridicule them. For a man you make a heck of a mean girl. I hope they use some of those fairy turds to decorate your car.

  241. I am not thrilled about the stuff. It IS affecting my right to make choices for my kids. Call me crazy, but I want them to eat the dinner I prepared and not have an insatiable sweet tooth habit. There is at least 1 sugary holiday a week, including birthdays, St. Patricks Day, Chinese New Year, on and on…. I also am not thrilled about all of the non-functional dollar store trinkets that clutter my house, get stuck in my drain traps, trash my car, trip me in the night, and overflow my recycling bin —in an attempt to make everything a big deal.
    The point missed is that it makes them happy for all of TWO SECONDS, that’s not memory making time, folks. A fond memory is special, or unique, or once in a lifetime, not every week. I remember having a room mother who made sure there was one fun sweet or treat for everyone for each major holiday- nice. Yes, I am a tad resentful, but not because I feel I don’t measure up, but it is the undoing of all the values I’ve tried to instill in them so far, don’t live on sugar, don’t waste your money on crap, don’t buy crap that only fills landfills, etc, etc As always (and for decades): friends, accomplishments, games should be enough for celebration fun and memory making…. not stuff. And …I think he was having a little fun, don’t take offense.

  242. AJ Kohn

    Your blog header mentions ‘integrity’ and ‘faith’, yet you seem consumed with bitterness and lack the ability to stop and smell the roses.

    People decided to make those little crafts and, lets be honest, some of them aren’t all that crafty. (A printer and a stapler isn’t exactly Martha Stewart.) You know what these might just show instead? CARING. Some people cared enough to do a little more. And while you might not have noticed I’m sure other kids and parents did and it brought a smile to their face. (Man, the parents that did that must be awful human beings huh?)

    But the fact is, you DID notice. Because you made a big deal out of it and wrote this rather cruel and unfeeling piece as a result.

    By your logic I suppose restaurants shouldn’t exist because those troublesome cooks are just showing off and does anyone really notice the presentation of the food on the plate? I mean, really, can’t we just pop a grey pill each day for our sustenance and be done with it?

    And why all the different styles and colors of houses? Shouldn’t we just all live in the same square house of the same color? That way no one feels like they’re different or special.

    Sorry, but that’s not the world I want to live in. Give Kurt Vonnegut’s Harrison Bergeron a read if you want an eye opener.

    So don’t for a second think that your experience is that of others. And sampling your own children (and did you really ask them?) isn’t going to work because if the parents aren’t stopping to smell the roses or appreciate these things the kids aren’t going to either. The apple and the tree and all that.

    How about this instead. Say THANK YOU. Don’t turn this around on your own High School like insecurities about what is expected or not. That’s your problem and you should deal with it. But don’t make other people feel bad about taking some additional time and wanting to do something more.

    Follow the golden rule my friend and say thank you when someone does something nice for you or your family.

  243. I was that mom, in spades. 7 kids, 5 schools, and 36 different Christmas teacher gifts. I began crafting in June or July because I loved the uniqueness of making homemade items. It brought me joy. Still the mom of 7 kids, just at a different stage in life. After about the 5 the grade, this all falls away. I miss it. But that season is over. I now send notes, encourage with a small $5 gift card, or an email. Time is sparse for me as I help plan a wedding, teach several to drive, car pool to endless games, practices and part time jobs… But I look forward to the day when I can return to my clever creative crafting ways… And when I do it will be another season in life… Which will serve another purpose. If you desire, join the ranks of crazy creative moms of littles… If you can’t or don’t desire to, recognize the gift and be grateful. If your neutral that’s fine too. No pressure. No stress. No worries. To each his own.

  244. Jophline

    I really would like to receive more mails especially about families. I love the article about how we tend to forget about our kids and how other person tend to uplift the kid in simple ways that are meaning ful.

  245. Nancy Krause

    I appears to me point/spirit of this post is lost on a lot of you.
    While some of you do this stuff because you find joy in it – there are plenty of moms/dads who do it because they feel that’s what’s expected of them and they feel “less than” if they don’t.
    He made a point to say Suzy Craftsalot does it because she likes it and isn’t doing it for competition.
    I think the “stop it” is referring to the parents who put the pressure on themselves to do the “pintrest” stuff even though they don’t find joy in it….not aimed at the people who do it because the have the time, talent, patience, etc.
    Frankly, the writer is not the one with a chip on his shoulder.
    I don’t do this type of stuff…it’s not my thing….but I can write a mean press release for a school fundraiser or donation letters to local businesses…we all have different talents to give.
    I guess it goes to show – no matter what or how much we do for our kids, we’re all a little bit defensive or insecure for one reason or another…which if you look on the bright side – it just proves we all care and shows we all have different talents to share – both with our own children and their friends and classmates.

    • Fairy turds and bluebirds

      From the article “Here’s a theory for you. There’s is probably one mom in the United States who actually enjoys doing this kinda’ thing. She sits whistling in her craft room, making little doo-dads out of marshmallow fluff and fairy turds while bluebirds flit about her shoulders. Meanwhile, all the rest of the moms are like:” Yeah he’s not mocking crafty moms at all (sarcasm – in case you missed it)

  246. chelsea

    I’m not even a mom and I love doing this stuff. If you genuinely don’t like it, then don’t do it. You have your own strengths. Leave Joann’s and Pinterest to those of us who want it. Your whining literally is doing nothing to make the world a better place.

  247. lin

    You’re too frazzled. Get a grip. If they enjoy it, let them. If you don’t…don’t. Its not really a competition until you make it one. I’m sure the other ladies don’t think of it that way. Just trying to do something cute. Its kind of like the fist day of school signs moms.make. you’re either into it, or your not. I’m not.

  248. Amanda

    I am a mom but I must be considered a nerd since I do this. But here is the kicker I do this kind of stuff for my co – workers. .and I LOVE doing this..I guess it was something instilled in me by my mom. My reward is seeing the happy faces on my co – workers. You never know if someone is having a bad day, week, etc and just seeing their excitement is the best..And I would hope the same rings true when these kids open their bags of treats..instead of gripping about how its made teach your child what she was trying to represent by adding little sayings to the goodies. I seriously don’t think when she was making these she was wanting anyone to feel they need to one up her.

    • Linda

      I’m assuming your co-workers are adults, and as adults they probably are too polite to say, “Oh, no! Not again. What is she thinking – that we’re five?” Seriously, Amanda? Your co-workers? And your kids might tell you the same thing when they stop rolling their eyes.

      • Fairy turds and bluebirds

        Wow Linda! you must feel so much better about yourself now that you have anonymously bullied a person for acts of kindness from behind that keyboard. Sheesh !

      • Liz

        I think it is nice that you think of your co-workers that way. I teach 4 year olds so maybe its just me. I would smile.

      • Danielle W

        Linda, I think your comment is way out of line. First, who doesn’t love goodies? And second, at what point did you think that everyone feels the same way you do. I don’t know why when life gives you the choice to be negative or positive you would chose to be negative.

        That being said, fairy turds, her comment isn’t bullying. Stop overusing that word. Either open a dictionary or don’t get online. Just because someone expresses a negative opinion, even if the comment is personal, does not make it bullying. I’m so tired of people using that word to describe any type of negativity. Read a book please.

      • Fairy turds and bluebirds

        Daniella W – You should really only take a condescending superior attitude when you have the good
        Definition of CYBERBULLYING

        : the electronic posting of mean-spirited messages about a person (as a student) often done anonymously

        From Merriam webster
        Might I suggest you ” read a book” or “open a dictionary” unless you are implying that Linda’s post wasn’t mean spirited … a bit like yours

      • E

        I completely agree with you, Linda. These people have WAY too much time on their hands.

      • Jen

        You are mean!

      • Maggie Stewart

        Linda, I hope that the happy little bluebirds don’t dive bomb your desk and leave creative dropping behind!

    • andrea

      Yes!!!! I do it because I love seeing the joy of the kids faces when their juice box is a robot or their grapes and goldfish are butterflies. To each their own just because you don’t like it, doesn’t give yu the right to bash others. No one should judge others for what they give, or if they give. If the world were to live listening to cynical people, then the world would be doing things for themselves selfishly and not give for others.

    • Amy

      He addressed that in the post, though. Some people love doing this. He’s talking about everyone who hates it and is just doing it because they feel like they have to. As a mom who works fulltime, has kids whose activities take a LOT of time, AND loves to craft, I totally got what he was saying. Because sometimes I’m the mom who does the Pinteresty stuff for the sheer joy of it, and sometimes I just don’t have the time and can’t be bothered.

      In short: don’t take it personally. It wasn’t about you.

      • Amber

        Thank you! I’m the same way. I work, a lot, and I would love to always have the energy to do cute little things for my children all the time. However, sometimes it’s more of a chore, so we sacrifice cutesy for quality. I’d much rather take my boys on a hike than spend however long making cute little edible things to send toschool. I also have mom friends who LOVE doing these things, all the time. They’re good at it and include their children. Sometimes it makes me jealous,but I get my own special time with my kids.

      • Very well said, Amy. No reason to get defensive if you love to do crafty things but I honestly don’t have the time. I’d rather spend that time with my kids riding bikes, going to the park, or reading then to create a cutsie orange OR I’d love to spend the time with my husband when my kids are in bed. It’s just priorities. If crafts make you happy, then go for it!

      • Cindy

        Why has Robert not been reported/ how can I do that?

    • Mary McDole

      You go on doing what you do girl and what you enjoy. We all have our own niche…things we like and things we do well. Shame on people for trying to make anyone feel bad, or guilty for being creative, and generous with their time and talents.

    • Sheri

      I’m with you my Sister In Law is so good at all crafts, I at none. I keep her gifts forever and truly appreciate every one. There’s no reason she should have to stop. Her daughter takes after her, and gets paid well!

    • Peggy

      Amanda — I love it!! I have been on both ends — the receiver and giver — of fun little items for co-workers. For some co-workers, it was the only recognition they received, especially on their birthday, so it was actually more fun to give than receive.
      Isn’t that the point of it all???

    • Jill Duarte

      You’re wrong. Kids don’t care. I think it’s very caring that you do this for your adult co-workers but kids just don’t care.

  249. Heidi

    I think it takes a village to raise a child and the more approaches that a child has the more rounded and observant they can be. I appreciate the efforts of those crafty people but I also appreciate the efforts of those who come in just to read with a child. Each has their different talents and if all shared with a child, the child will be better for it. If craftiness isn’t your thing, that is fine as long as you are helping and participating in whatever “thing” you are good at. I have been known to do both and enjoyed both and my kids remember me being there no matter which way I participated. Mom was there and I am grateful for the opportunity to help and for those who share with my child in whatever way they can. 🙂

  250. Ellen

    If whom ever wrote this vile letter about another mother thinks she is that frazzled perhaps it is you who are taking on too much! How can you be that angry! My sons best memories were when I would make the time in my busy working schedule to be accompany the kids to the zoo. or on a trip to the Field Museum.
    May God bless your children and the people you work for!

    • Sheryl

      Maybe you should re-read the letter. It was written by a man married to a crafty woman who observed how petty and competitive women can be. Women who are unwilling to admit that this competitive behavior is just their ‘gift of being a great mom’ is not living in reality. It is wonderful that you made time for field trips with your kids! I have fond memories of those times with my children! But that is not what this letter was about…

      • Meg

        No, it’s written by a man who has a wife who feels as though SHE must compete with those crafty mothers. He even said that the crafty mom didn’t give a crap about what anyone else brought in. Most of us who craft for our children do not do it for competition. The competition is in the mind of those who perceive it.

      • Fairy turds and bluebirds

        Actually I don’t think that is what is going on here. Put your self in the position of the parents who took the time to put this together. He basically tells them the kids don’t appreciate it and to stop doing it . From the article” Here’s a theory for you. There’s is probably one mom in the United States who actually enjoys doing this kinda’ thing. She sits whistling in her craft room, making little doo-dads out of marshmallow fluff and fairy turds while bluebirds flit about her shoulders. Meanwhile, all the rest of the moms are like:

        “$#!+. That f’in party is tomorrow, and I gotta’ come up with something cute for the kids, cause you know Susie Craftsalot is gonna’ make the Taj Mahal of lemon bars. Here, let me just slap some googley eyes and some construction paper on this fruit cup and call it good.”
        “Deep down, we know we’re not doing it for the kids. They couldn’t care less. My daughter didn’t even notice the adornments. But she did appreciate the snacks.”

        I’m not one of those crafty moms but I do appreciate the ones who make my kids life more fun. This post is just vile

    • AmyC

      I’m pretty sure you didn’t read this article. Or you prob just stopped at the first paragraph and started judging. If you had read this entire thing you would’ve absorbed that it’s a man who wrote this, a husband of a mother who does this ‘googly eyes’ crafty crap. You also would’ve read that he is in agreement with you. He feels that time spent with your children is more important than crafting wings to a bag of chips. So what’s vile, is bible thumping a God’s blessing in sarcasm.
      Now excuse me, I have to go warm up my glue gun….

  251. Sheryl

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing your thoughts! As a mother of 2 boys, I fully agree! My boys used to go to a private school, and during that time I worked a job where I traveled by plane every week. While most Kindergarten moms were completing the assignments for their children (the coloring was perfectly in the lines, the handwriting immaculate) my son did his own work. It stood out in the papers hanging on the wall because it was the one actually completed by a Kindergarten student. I missed many field trips-but often his grandma or grandpa would attend. A stay at home mom actually had the nerve to stop me in the hall one day and in a patronizing tone said “You missed another wonderful field trip!” I feel sorry for those of you who feel this need to compete and gain enjoyment from making others feel bad. Most of us don’t want to do the ‘crafty’ crap and have no desire to compete. There are so many other important things in life to direct your energy toward!

    • Can't we all just get along?

      Just yesterday I had the conversation (again) with my son that it never hurts anyone to give someone else a boost up. My son was sarcastically calling a favorite author a ‘traitor” for writing a good review of another book (in that he was a traitor to his own books). This is a lesson most people never hear – no less take to heart and learn.

    • Lisa

      I helped my girls make home made owl Valentines once. family Fun inspired. They held pencils in their claws. I believe that was 6-8 years ago. I appreciate the crafty moms and, in my imagination, I am one . . .my reality is something different. Maybe it’s because I’m older (45). I just don’t care either way. Our youngest is 8 and the parents brought in a crazy science day for Valentine’s Day. I went into my 5th graders classroom and relaxed with the older moms.

  252. gigi peterson

    My kids are 14 and 16. I too feel like things are “over the top” with celebrations for our kids – from the extravagant birthday parties to the graduations from several grades before high school. Enough!!! And Good Lord, the weddings!! THe money spent and all the
    Pinterest extras are exhausting!

  253. virginia crom

    The little darlings do not need to be glorified constantly. Some, egomaniacs, already know they are “special”. Some, insecure ones, won’t believe the praise anyway. Nope, these Mothers are doing this for, ta-da!!….THEMSELVES…

    • Sally

      Oh, it’s definitely for the moms. I work in a school and there are 2 kinds of Moms who do this. One kind is truly dedicated to their children, and value school and want to make it fun. That kind is wildly outnumbered by the ones who think the showy craft is the important part of parenting. Never mind having their children do homework, learn manners, be accountable or show respect or (gasp) appreciation for all that is done for them by teachers and staff. Nope the craft is the important part. OOH look at me! (and most times, the second kind hijack the lovely plans of the teachers to send their children off to summer with love and appreciation for them as individuals who matter.

    • Anna

      This comment is a masterpiece.

  254. This is pure genius…well done!

  255. Takeasecond

    Ok so let’s take a second and actually try to understand this what this man (yes this is a dad writing this article, please pay attention when you read) is saying.

    1) For those of us (myself inculded) who feel like they are lacking in the craftiness department, stop trying to do crafty things because you may feel obligated to do. Be honest with yourself. We all feel pressured to do those thing for fear of being the only Mom who didn’t and if you didn’t decorate your fruit cup you clearly don’t care about the children’s happiness (shame on you).

    2) If you don’t feel obligated to decorate fruit cups and you do it because you love it — good for you! If you are this type of person (who so many of you claim to be) then I’m sure you wouldn’t pass judgement on other mothers for not decorating fruit cups. You prove this mans point. Hopefully you don’t care what the other mothers do or don’t do.

    3) The kids don’t care. They really don’t. And if they do, it’s only for a second. Teaching your kids to observe others hard work and be thankful for it is great. But they really won’t remember that later. Do I remember anything elementary school parents did to snacks? No. Did it affect who I was as a person in the long run? No.

    In review: for those who love it, keep decorating and being crafty –good for you! Those who stress about fixing something for school kids because they feel obligated or pressured –just stop. Don’t stress yourself out about things that won’t matter.

    Let’s all stop taking things so personally — like this author is speaking directly to you about the way you live your life. It’s an opinion piece. Try and see things from a different perspective rather than trying to defend yourself from a personal attack that doesn’t exist.

    • Be The Change You Wish To See In The World

      I commented because I am the parent who is crafty. Who others talk nice to your face and then bad behind your back. Just like they were doing in this comment thread. I wanted people to know why I do it. Its for the kids, you say don’t think about it for a second. You can’t speak for the kids, so please don’t. I have provided countless volunteer hours and time spent with children who don’t get anything, who need that special moment with their name on the bag that isn’t their siblings, that is just there’s. For the countless underprivileged kids whose proud mama’s said thank you and Bless You. We don’t know what’s going on in each of those children’s lives, because they can’t express it yet, but we can be there. My crafts will be there for them or the time I read with them. Whatever we can give to build our children up, so they grow up respecting each other and knowing that a parents going to be their for them, whatever it takes to show them a little love, because we don’t know who needs it most, we just know it needs to be done. And, thank you for your post, it was the most positive and gave both perspectives beautifully. I felt compelled to write something positive, in light of all the bashing you saw here. Thank you.

      • My Mother was a first grade teacher, in a school that was in an underprivileged area of the community. A lot of those children and their patents sent letters years later, about the special interest she took on their children. I know how much she appreciated all of the crafty little things that volunteers did for her classes. That does make a difference to a child that doesn’t have much. So I guess it may depend on the affluence of the society, in some instances.

  256. Be The Change You Wish To See In The World

    I am that crafty mom, I do it for my child and I will do it for yours, I work long days commuting out of town to work full time. People ask how do I find the time, I don’t know, I just do it. Because the glow of the child’s face, for that smile, for mattering and feeling important…it’s about the kids, not some diluted sense of diminished worth you have for yourself because you don’t craft. Get over yourself, you can do other things. Stop spending so much time saying stop, and look at the bigger picture, a person with a strong sense of worth will not talk down about other peoples efforts, admire moms who don’t talk down to each other, just say thank you and move along. I don’t care what the other moms feel about what I do, I care about the child who gets left out all the time, the different child, the kid who gets the hand me downs and nothing new of his own, the kid who’s parents are really poor but don’t show it, they are out there, all of them. I am there for them! I am here for the children, not for you.

    • Jessica

      I’m not a crafty mom at all, and I don’t feel guilty about it. I can recognize and appreciate that gift in others like yourself, and do think the sweet extra touches make kids happy. I have other gifts to share. I appreciate you sharing your talents. I agree with you and don’t understand why others can’t just see the beauty in other’s actions.


      First person to make any sense. I have lots of friends and family who are crafty. They love doing it and that’s just a part of who they are. Everyone is different and has different talents. It’s a shame to read all these posts from mom’s who could praise the craftiness and kindness. Kudos to the mom’s who do and kudos to the moms who treat other’s with kindness and without judgement. Your kids are watching you!

  257. Darren

    As a person who has worked for many years in a school district, a parent of three (one of which is in school, one who has just graduated, and one out of college), I have to say that I understand where this man is coming from. Although it is possible that those who have been most offended by this post live in communities where all is well, and there is no mom on mom competition or bullying. That is just not so in my community. I have served on many committees where the mom (and sometimes dad) competition often gets out of hand. The writer fairly pointed out that those who don’t have the skills should not stress or feel bad about not participating. More often than not, I have seen “moms” be assigned projects, with little to no regard for their ability or skill set. It has gotten to the point that the most competitive are the only ones who will now serve on these types of committees, and as a result the ideas of those who must, or even choose to work outside of the home are under represented.

    It is not odd to see letters to parents that say, things like “Since you are unwilling to participate in creating the goodie bag for the MS [Team Name], can you at least provide pre-purchased snacks, or the funds for the [Committee Name] can purchase them for you?” I still have one of the letters.

    You all need to understand that what he wrote is true. Mom’s (and sometimes dad’s) need not over involve themselves if it is causing them undue stress, or if they lack the skill set. And it may well be that his prose is colored by his personal experience in his community where, like mine, there is much mom bullying and an extreme level of competition .

  258. Mommy

    Let’s then just say “stop it” to all moms who shower in the morning instead of wearing PJ’s to drop their kids to school, and also to those moms who blow-dry their hair instead of wearing a messy bun every day, and the ones who wear flats instead of plastic flip flops to the playground. C’mon. Competition is only in your heads. If those crafty moms do it for the joy of it, let them be. As long as they don’t expect for the rest of the world to be the same. Express your self they way you want, even if it’s with a fancy birthday party or not. No competition. The fact it bothers you that someone else has a talent, is sad. A lot of moms get in to that game of competing, just don’t get yourself into that.

  259. Jill Peeples

    We are NOT going to stop. Maybe you should stop! Stop ragging on moms who give a crap and work really hard. Some of us are good at this stay home mom thing. Some of us volunteer at school and throw super crafty parties and make end of the school year gift bags for ALL of the children at school! YOUR WELCOME!! You don’t seem to realize that these “crafty” moms are doing fun things not just for their own kids but YOURS TOO. Kids are our “thing”! Some of us can get our selves together and have a few extra minutes to put goggly eyes on applesauce. My kids LOVE goggly eyes! Being a Mom is my JOB! My FULL-TIME job. I CHOSE this over other professions. I take it very seriously. Occasionally If you don’t think that you measure up, well maybe its time to stop measuring! I do my very best every single day and I’m not going to slow down because YOU think for some stupid reason that you need to complete. The truth is that the mom who made those bags probably had her kids help her. And that kid was probably super excited to bring them in to school. I have one in kindergarten, one in fifth grade and another that’s close to graduation. All three LOVE the little extras and effort. They love to do things for others. The junk in that bag was super cute. It was really thoughtful and sweet. It sucks that your too caught up in mom wars to see the kindness and lightheartedness that was bestowed on your child at school by another parent.

    • Be The Change You Wish To See In The World

      Thank you for this post! I am with you, 100%. My child loves giving things out, this teaches her about thinking of others and having fun while doing it! See you on the front lines 😉

    • This. 100% this. If you feel like you’re being measured, then I think that speaks volumes about your character. I am a crafty mom and gardening mom. Every year I volunteer for every single craft/gardening event. Know what? If I didn’t do it? The kids would get NOTHING. Because all the other parents are too absentee to pitch in and help.

      Nothing is better to me and my girls than the smiles on their faces when they get something cute from my family or they get to plant one of the 20 mint plants or 2 flats of flowers I bought for their community garden while I stand in the hot sun with a sunhat helping direct them.

    • LA

      Ah. YOU’RE the one. The one who made sure my son was full of crap from the school Halloween party before I ever took him trick or treating, and had already ripped the costume he HAD to wear (and that I’d spent hours making). The one who threw a full-on Thanksgiving feast the day before, so when I worked 8 hours on our family dinner, he’d already had his fill of turkey and fixings. The one who threw parties for every birthday, without regard to my plans, and sent my kid home full of cupcakes and sugar. The one who made sure that opening presents on Christmas morning was an anticlimax for us, and a strange and conflicting occurrence for the non-Christian students.

      When I complained to the school principal, he had a hard time even wrapping his head around my issues. He seemed to think that this involved group of “professional mothers” were doing great things, and didn’t begrudge the hours every month consumed with non-academics. He refused to do anything about it. So YOU’RE the one that, yes, forced me to move my child to another *school district* in order to find a place where all parties of any sort were forbidden. Incredibly, his grades and his behavior improved. He regained his anticipation of family holiday traditions. Birthdays became special and personal instead of routine and public. (really, nobody in a second grade classroom cares if someone else has a birthday. It’s all about them) And he didn’t miss, one bit, the choreographed, over the top, treat-laden school events.

      So yeah, stop it. It’s not all about YOU and your choices to be a “MOM.” Some of us would rather our children came down on Christmas morning with wonder in their eyes, instead of “ho hum, already did this at school.” Remember that when you’re planning yet another bash, for kids who may not even share your personal concept of whatever holiday you’re prostituting in an effort to persuade yourself you’re doing something valuable with your life. I’m out working for a living because I *have* to. I don’t have time to volunteer, and I make the time to create traditions as *I* see fit. Stop trying to bring up my child in your image. It’s not your place.

  260. jobblogs

    i am friends with these moms and work with these moms. They don’t care what anyone else does. They do it for the kids/teachers/coahes/coworkers. They spend time with their kids, and do all this after they go to bed, or with their kids. I’ve never know a neglected child of this type of mother.

  261. Ellen Albrecht

    Mommy wars! Got to love it! Things just get more outrageous and the kids less impressed! As a grandma I try to stay out of it now!

  262. Missj

    Is he really a Missionary?

  263. Peggy K

    Please, it was a funny article! I took no offense, I was that crafty mom who spent HOURS decorating cut out cookies, pumpkins for Halloween, Christmas Wreath’s/Nutter Butter Santa’s for Christmas, Hearts for Valentines Day, Shamrocks for St Patrick’s Day and Ducks and Flowers for Easter–imagine my horror when most of them had a bite taken out and were thrown in the trash! They had so many cute things to eat that they would have been sick if they ate them all! We spend a lot of time creating these CUTE things, time that could have been better spent! Have a sense of humor people!

  264. angie smith

    Does it really matter if it is done because of the enjoyment or for competition, when my children were small I enjoyed doing little extra things for their classmates- my grown children tell me they enjoyed me making special treats for their class parties. Aside from all that what about the child who rarely gets a special treat and how encouraging that little bag of treats must have been.

  265. Sherry

    We don’t judge you for not wanting to do things like this. I’m sure you have many talents and gifts that you share. Why do you feel the need to yell at and apparently try to shame people that do things that you don’t want to? That’s just sad.

  266. Communication Breakdown

    Note to author: For someone who makes his living teaching others how to “communicate gooder” you are doing one heck of job.

  267. Sue

    This made me laugh out loud. I’m sorry but everyone who is mad after reading this need to lighten up. From what I read, there were compliments to the crafty moms and the point was to relax, you are enough…

  268. monica

    What a bitter and ugly person. Some of us take our job as Stay at Home Moms very seriously, just like you working parents take your job seriously. How dare this numbskull tell us how to do our job. We do not hover over them telling them how to do their job. We both made a choice to work for currency. Just because our currency is not green does not mean ours is less valued. Go suck on an egg you bitter person.

  269. Mom of five

    I’m punching the air with the article. I’m a full time working mom and honestly, I just can’t do it anymore. You do try to keep up! The kids don’t care as much as we care how we look to other moms. My own children have told me that. Secondly, it’s expensive. I once spent $75 helping my son make crafty homemade snow globs for Christmas gifts. I realized later, that money could have gone towards really helping someone that needed it.

  270. Missj

    He has a filthy mouth for a Missionary and one who is supposed to uplift and teach others how to serve.

  271. Cindi H.

    Why are the kids left out? As a child I was proud of the cupcakes I helped my very busy (9 kids) mother decorate. My own kids were proud of their own good ideas for goody gifts.

    Competitive people see competition everywhere while crafters build stuff. I say bring on the hand knitted sweaters, the too-many-sprinkles cookies,
    the origamis, and the fake sheriff badges. Kids live to laugh, to roll with delight. A talking worm–fine. An attitude cop–not so good.

  272. Jenny works

    The amount of time it took you to write this article, you could have simply went on Pinterest, found a craft, and made a fruit cup with googly eyes. It’s priorities. Some people work full time and actually enjoy doing these things. It’s ok if you don’t, but don’t put others down for your own laziness.

  273. Jenny works

    Ps – how about thanking the parent who spent their own time putting this together for your kid…. You’re welcome by the way…

  274. Working mom

    Shorter version: “This May have taken effort, but I refuse to value that work. It doesn’t look like my work. Certainly no one is paying for this kind of work. The only people this kind of work matters to are children, and possibly the women who do it. Therefore, in my world, this kind of work has no value.” I bet the moms who did this are really thrilled they did one for your kid.

  275. Deb

    Wait…not 100% certain I get it. Nothing is overly done here, there’s a few googly eyes on things and others stapled together, cute. It’s the “end of the year party” too, most of these could’ve been done by a teacher that cares for the students, maybe some parents helped… The kids are in 2nd grade? Why not let them have some fun?

    Seems sensible as far as the amount put into the bag. Not sure how many students this would have to be made for, but if someone enjoys it and the parents are obligated I see nothing wrong with this. Parents looking down at others for not being able to do this or one reason or another are people you probably don’t consider your friends anyhow, so what’s it matter? Oh, miss whats her face was snide? So? Does she control anything in your life? Does she have any real effect on your day to day other than being a snide little so and so at times? Is she your friend? If the answer is yes to the friend kick her booty to the curb.

    Telling all parents to “stop it” just because some don’t have time to do this or flat out don’t want to is kinda a jerk move. “Stop, I don’t want to be expected to do things like this” is what I got from that :/ School can be a downer, little things like this really help perk the kids up from time to time. But don’t worry Mr.Spoil-Sport, soon the kids will be older and not have any fun things to bring home and ruin your day and not give you nor anyone else “expectations” to make your child’s life a little brighter..

  276. Dawn

    Wow! You are crazy. No, I do not need your brand of negativity.

  277. crazycatlady42

    I love that the OP specifies that he’s talking to people who DON’T like doing these things. I’ve seen plenty of articles telling people to stop because they’re giving kids unrealistic expectations and stuff like that, but you know, some people just have the craft bug and enjoy doing things. No one ever said everyone in the world had to do the same thing.

    I enjoy crafts. I make things because I think it’s fun. I would never in a million years expect someone else to do these things or think myself superior to them in any way. In fact, I kinda look at my crafts as dorky.

  278. Fairy turds and bluebirds

    So Scott came home “traveling the country talking to people about how to think better, communicate gooder, and leave the world better than they found it” to find his daughter happily unpacking her very cool and creative goody bag her mom had contributed to and decided he needed to just tell parents to “stop It “… seriously.
    His wife was probably burnt out from taking care of the 2 kids by herself for days and said something like ” and I had to make those #%&$ fruit cups”. So instead of doing the sane thing and telling her she did a great job ( which she did) and that her daughter loved them ( uneaten and still intact – so it wasn’t just the snacks) he decided to write this snarky post to justify his feelings of inadequacy.
    Well Scott you have achieved 2 things – you’ve pissed off any parent who has a kid who appreciates that stuff (crafty or not) and you’ve ensured that the next couple of days are super awkward for your wife and daughter.
    You may want to stop giving advice on “thinking better, communicating gooder and leaving the world better than you found it ” ….

  279. Katie Smith

    Wow, so negative. I enjoy doing things like that, and I know plenty of other moms who do. Sometimes it’s stressful, sometimes it’s not, but you know what? I enjoy it either way! Plus, kids LOVE helping out and giving things like that to their friends. It gives them a sense of pride from having helped make it. Just because you don’t like going the extra mile to make something cute doesn’t mean you should make other moms feel dumb or overachieving or uptight for doing it. If I was the child/parent who made those, I’d be really offended by this post. 😦

  280. As one of the moms who LOVES to do this sort of thing, I really wish others would just accept me as I am. I don’t go all out on a birthday party to make someone else feel they didn’t do enough for their own child. I do it because it’s a hobby and I love it. And my kids like helping and planning, and we enjoy the time we spend together creating and crafting.

    You know what I don’t love? Cooking. So I don’t do it. But I most certainly don’t begrudge the moms who do cook for their families every night and do it with flair. The way I see it, we all have different interests, talents, passions, and strengths, and we should encourage each other in our pursuit of those.

    So if you want to cook a lovely dinner for my family, I can guarantee you we will do cartwheels with excitement to share in the fruits of your labor. And if I want to send fancy snacks for soccer practice, know I do it out of love and maybe just say ‘thanks for bringing the snacks today’ without rolling your eyes.

  281. Krazy mom

    When my daughter was in Kindergarten many years ago, we were forced to hold all of the Halloween and Valentine’s parties in the gym at the same time. Each class had their long tables…right beside each other. Now, I volunteered to be the lead room mother and boy was that a mistake! That was when you could still bring home baked goods. I called the other moms who signed up and we divided up the tasks. We needed drinks, baked goods, a treat bag and a game or two. One working mom sent in balloons, which I blew up and tied to ribbons thinking the kids would love to play the “pop the balloon game” when it is tied to your ankle. When I walked in the gym that day with the other moms in my daughter’s class, we were shocked! The other tables had table cloths, bakery cupcakes all fancy and decorated and the table next to us had beautiful helium balloons for each child tied to their place setting. I scooped up all the limp (non-helium) balloons I had painstakingly blown up by mouth and tied them to my picnic basket that had all my supplies in it. That was our “centerpiece”. Yes…the other tables had centerpieces….and they had GIFTS for the teacher in the class! Really? For Halloween? We went ahead and kind of hung our heads as our party was fun, energetic, but by no means fancy. When it came time for our kids to play the balloon stomping game they loved it! The kids had the most fun as they ran around the gym trying to stomp the other kids balloons and pop them…they were squealing with excitement and when we took out the Washing machine box that we had wrapped in black paper to look like a haunted house and played “throw the ghost through the window”…yep, toilet paper and papertowels make amazing ghosts…we knew we had a good party. Now the funny thing…or sad thing…depending on how you look at it was when the children in the class next to us with the amazing and beautiful Halloween helium balloons were crying because their moms wouldn’t let them pop them and stomp them. Those moms were aghast!

    So, what I learned was parties were a terrible competition. I volunteered the next year, since I was a stay-at-home mom, to be the leader of the PTA parties. First thing I did was move those parties back in the classroom! No need for added pressure to the moms who weren’t crafty, or couldn’t afford to send something amazing, or just didn’t have the time…or maybe they forgot!

    Now, as my daughter is getting married in two months, I am finding that Pinterest is the new “Room Mother’s Party”. It is an absolute competition and is just there to antagonize me to make sure that I remember to make the sign that says we are having late night snacks or the sign that the photo booth is “that way”.

    I am caught up in the frenzy again….and trying to make sense of it all because I am sure that no one at the wedding will realize that we weren’t as crafty as those at the last wedding they attended!

  282. Elihu

    I didn’t see this as negative. There is so much excessive pressure out there for parents to have creativity and perfection oozing from their little finger. I love creative people who can come up with cool stuff like this, but it just isn’t worth stressing over. Take that energy and devote it to time with your family instead.

  283. Just because some of you “mothers” are too much of a loser to actually run a home and have your own business and you choose to work outside the home, don’t make fun of those of us who do. (Why have kids in the first place?) don’t make fun of us that do all this and make your kid feel special, if you’re too busy playing corporate woman to do it, someone will and I guarantee you, your daughter will remember her friends mom who took them to the pool and who made the cookies with them more than she ever will your flying every week and how important you made yourself feel by sacrificing her child hood.
    Just the fact that your daughter sat down and smiled said it all. She doesn’t want to come out of the covers to spend time with you but when she sits down at a table and sees what another mom did for her, she is all smiles. Wow, most powerful statement I read. So I own an online clothing store, I make more than my husband does, and I am still home to raise my kids, and the kid down the street whose mom is a “corporate” mom, can’t tell you how many nights that kid has spent the night at our home. So wallow in your hate, your children will remember you weren’t there. They will not remember the BMW you drove or how many Chanel purses you had but they will remember the other moms that are there for them.

  284. jewels

    Everyone has their gifts, talents etc. I get so caught up in the stress of having to be as good as that I find myself frozen out of the sheer stress of it rather then enjoying it as I used to. We need to stop judging each other and stop judging ourselves. (I am my own worst judge) Some people craft, others are good leaders, some are coaches, other again are good car poolers. We each have gifts. If we all had the same talents the world would be so boring, and we’d be a bunch of clones.

  285. jewels

    I think there are some misunderstandings here about the article. He said stop it to all the mom’s who “feel” pressured to perform as these wonderfully creative parents. Not all of us have this kind of talent or desire. It doesn’t mean you are a bad parent. There are things each parent does for their children that is special. It doesn’t have to be crafting. What he was stressing is that we as parents need to give ourselves a break in the self pressure department with regards to our children. The main goal is to raise our children to be productive decent adults. His article was supportive of both the creative and non-creative. We all have our talents and gifts to share with the world. That is what I believe he meant. I was also quite taken aback and surprised at some of the responses. The harshness, and judgements made by some well goodness. Such cruel and mean people. Did you not learn anything from the article? I remember when my kid’s were little, and I was a single parent working full time. There were neat things I could do with my kid’s and there were things better left for other parents to do. I remember also putting undo pressure on myself because I felt like a failure for the things I couldn’t do. When my kid’s grew up they told me that I was a great mom and spending time with them was more important then “buying” them things. I didn’t have the money to buy them things. So we “made” things or colored in coloring books, or had slumber parties, just the three of us in the living room on a friday night. It was our time together that mattered.

  286. marcelle

    “Crackers are enough.” Uh we were supposed to bring end of year snacks?!?!? Missed that memo!

  287. Mamala

    I’m a bit taken aback by the reaction to this article. I appreciated it initially because it suggests that people who craft for the joy of it are…doing it for the joy of doing it and not to compete with other parents. That seemed pretty on point, and I appreciated the reminder that the intent isn’t to pressure others. It suggested that those who are miserable trying to “compete” should stop making themselves miserable, basically because that fails the cost/benefit analysis test. The cost begins to exceed the benefit when the parent is doing it unhappily. Makes sense.

    And then I read the comments. Self-congratulatory comments about doing things “for the kids” and resentment that some random stranger doesn’t appreciate your efforts enough does, I guess, disprove his point. And that’s sad. Because there are so MANY ways of meeting kids’ needs, and they aren’t all public or visible. We don’t need 25 classroom parents all feeling pressured to decorate class treats. We need a few who enjoy it to add a little pizzazz to the party; a few others who quietly slip a few extra dollars in the field trip envelope; a few who bring hand-me-downs to the nurse’s office instead of to a friend who doesn’t need them; a few who don’t have time to give to the larger school community because they are working two jobs–or commuting two hours per day on the bus, and need to spend their reduced free time being present for their kids, but are making sure that there kids are rested, dressed and ready for school.

    Being “good” at being a stay-at-home parent is the same as being “good” at being a parent working outside the home. It involves using your strengths to make your child’s life happy and healthy. Making decorations does not make you a better parent. It does not make you a worse parent. It makes you either a parent who enjoys crafting and finds satisfaction in the result, or it makes you a parent who doesn’t enjoy crafting and doesn’t take particular satisfaction in the result. That’s it.

    • Tracy

      You are exactly on point. I loved the article send then the comments made me sad. Everyone helps in their own way…not having the ability, time, money to make these crafts does not make you uninvolved nor does it mean you don’t appreciate what those crafty people do.

  288. Yvette Grant

    Thank you! Loving your children and spending time with them doing nothing is really enough.

  289. michelle

    First off…YIKES!! I am a teacher, and I do LOTS for my kiddos. I do it because I LOVE doing it. I do not judge ANY other teacher for what they do or do not do for their students. My hubby makes good money, and I LOVE spending it on my kiddos who have none!

    Second…I LOVE the fact that this Robert guy keeps on trying and trying to get a comment on his off color replies and everyone just ignores him! LOL! That might be my favorite part! As you can see, I could not. Que Sera Sera!! Do what you love, Love what you do! That’s my motto!! =-)

    • This whole feed was crazy to read for me… I seriously have been oblivious! Didn’t know some moms HATE me and think I’m “non-existent” lol because I don’t do this kind of stuff. It’s not everyone’s talent. Why can’t we love ourselves without hating everyone else? I have to say though it’s hard when there’s only one parent. Stay at home moms with Dad’s doing all the other stuff should show a bit more respect for their own sex. Us girls are supposed to stick together. Moms especially. I have friends that do all this stuff and I think they are awesome! Your kids are WATCHING! Be a friend. Don’t talk shit. Don’t judge people. Don’t be a bitch. That’s it.

    • And teachers like you make my babies LOVE learning more! So I say than you thank you thank you!!! You are my favorites! LOL Que Sera Sera! And three out of five of my kids are crafty and artsy, so yeah I do it for them sometimes but mostly I love seeing what they come up with!

  290. Debbie

    I don’t feel this article was very kind at all. I was never a crafty Mom raising children but had dear friends that were. They made various things out of the goodness of their hearts and not because they were competing. I never felt bad in fact I enjoyed them just as much as the kids. We all have different gifts, and I actually feel really bad for the woman who worked hard to do these and have them displayed in a negative way. I don’t feel the majority of women judge themselves just because they aren’t crafty. So many more important issues to be concerned about in life.

    • Reds

      Ditto- I feel bad for the mom who spent the time and money to be bashed here also. It really was adorable and meant for the kids to enjoy.

  291. Even though I’m not a mom and I can attest to this. And Pinterest stress? Oh man tell me about it. Try planning a wedding during the Pinterest era.. It’s not easy! I wrote a blog post about if you care to see perspective on that end.

  292. Reds

    I used to have time to do thoughtful stuff like this and loved seeing the kids get excited when they opened it. Now I can longer do it and really appreciate when another mom or dad steps up to do it (or any effort really). My thought is, don’t bash the parent who does thoughtful stuff and don’t bash the parent that wishes she had the time or energy to do it or the ones who don’t really care. Just appreciate that you woke up this morning and count your blessings! We are teaching our kids to judge and bash over a goodie bag.

  293. Liz

    I must say I see both sides here. I love to craft at heart, but am not able to prioritize it right now – I’m our breadwinner and we have 4 children – husband in med school. I focus in on providing for and loving these sweet little children and my husband as best I can. Someday again I will sew, I will knit, and I will enjoy it! Right now, I wouldn’t enjoy it because it would simply exhaust me. I leverage the time and gifts I have to give now for my children. We go for walks, hikes, bike rides – we read stories – LOTS of stories – we play games, we talk, snuggle, hug, wrestle, and watch silly movies. We plan special outings, we camp in the summer, swim, go to the zoo, the park, or just chill in our pajamas and eat cereal. I give what I can at their schools – I go in for special reading days – and teach the kids Chinese words or prep some fun non-fiction and discussions. I’ll probably never be that mom with my kids’ lives scrapbooked and I know I’ll never be the mom who makes that kind of end-of-year bag. But I thought it was cute. That’s just not me. I think being a great mom or dad comes in so many shapes and forms. What’s important is that we’re all sharing love.

  294. Yes! This morning I dropped my daughter off at school along with her “College Commitment Ceremony” sash. I had cursed this sash assignment to the point of telling my mom I wasn’t going to take my kid to the dang ceremony. She volunteered to make and mail the sash. As the teacher exclaimed praises over the sash I found myself feeling all warm and fuzzy, remembering a childhood need for that approval. Wait a second. No, not cool that Grandma Fedexed a stinking sash so that my kindergartener could get brainwashed about the necessity of college. Don’t give me an A+ for this assignment. I don’t want your credit. I don’t recognize your authority to dole out Successes and Failures. Not for my kid, and not for me.

  295. Emily O..

    This spoke to my soul. Thank you!

  296. My 2 cents: I do wish there was less crude language, especially from a blog that aims to represent Christ.

  297. AMRS

    I think it’s really sad that anyone would assume that the parents who do this ONLY do it to impress other parents. I go from the assumption that adults make their own choices on what it is important to spend one’s time on. Each year I make gingerbread houses for my kid’s class. Do you know why? She loves it. And her friends love it. If you think I do it to impress you that’s your issue. Of you don’t want to do it, more power to you. But don’t feel free to assume how I feel about anything.

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