Arts and Crafts

If there is one thing stay-at-home dads (SAHDs)* are most known for above all else it is definitely Arts and Crafts.

Let us loose with some card stock, glitter, glue, and markers and we can create some real magic. I’m not sure what kind of magic all you guys like to make, but in my family, we like to channel this artsy craftiness toward a very specific purpose: the creation of celebratory door signs to greet visiting friends and family members. Well, mainly family members, but I won’t foreclose the possibility of friends one day.

No occasion is too small for a celebratory door sign. 

Cousins visiting from next door?

Boom!

Door sign.

Labor Day Cookout?

Boom!

Door sign.

Family member returning from a weekend trip?

Boom!

Door sign.

Birthday, Anniversary, Fourth of July, Wedding, Bar Mitzvah, Super Bowl Party? Obviously. These just go without saying. Grab a sheet of over-sized paper or an undersized poster board, break out some markers, or if those aren’t available, a Number 2 pencil, and slap that beast on the front door with some Scotch tape!

A couple weeks ago, GD (that’s short for Grandad by the way, apparently there has been some confusion) was coming over for a visit and it happened to be his birthday: a gift-wrapped sign-making opportunity. I asked Jacob if we should make a sign to put on the door. His affirmative answer was genetically pre-ordained.

J: “We need to get out the bird paper!”

Me: “What?”

J: “The bird paper. That’s what we need to make a sign.”

Me: “OK, sounds good.” (I was clueless.)

After searching the house for several minutes, we found this buried under a stack of books on the bookshelf.

 Bird Paper

Bird Paper

Huh, that was mildly impressive. Guess it stands to reason that he would remember the construction paper well, though. Since we use it so often to get crafty.

Because Jacob is just 3-years-old and has yet to master the intricacies of sign construction, I took the lead. I tried to incorporate his input where possible, but I maintained tight editorial control. We don’t mess around when it comes to door signs. I employed an old lawyer trick to get where we needed to go: leading questions.

“What should we write? Happy Birthday, Grandad?”

“Should we draw a picture of him?”

Maybe I should let him have more control, but then again, it's hard to argue with the final product.

 Final Product

Final Product

The only real concession I made was on the color of the paper and crayon, which I still mildly regret.

No matter, when our guests arrived, the sign received the adulation it clearly deserved and even took up its rightful place on the wall at GD’s house during the formal birthday party. Overall, it was a very satisfying experience for me (I mean Jacob).

 Satisfying experience

Satisfying experience

* Or is work-at-home dads (WAHDs) the preferred term now? I see myself as more of a SAHD than a WAHD so I’m sticking with that until further notice.