My daughter started kindergarten this year, which means my status as a working mom received a new layer of meaning. I was prepared to meet the judgy stay at home mom that attends every class party and volunteers at a minimum of 3 days a week. Rest assured, I wasn’t disappointed.
Back in October I finally had the chance to volunteer for the class fall party. I worked long days that week, so I could take off early on Friday to be there. I was assigned “my station,” I knew what time to arrive, and I was stoked!
I walked into that school like…
Hey look at me, I work full time. I have a little monster at home and a deployed husband. But here I am – volunteering at my kid’s school, and I don’t look half bad today in my cardigan and curly hair.
Then, there they were – The Pinterest Moms. Perhaps, it’s envy. They always look so well put together. Or maybe, a small part of me wishes I could be at home with my kids. Nah! I’m a good mom because I don’t stay home with them.
Regardless, I’ve noticed that these small groups of Pinterest Mom’s have a few things in common…
- Oversized Louis Vuitton
- Sparkling coffee mug
- Leggings that match the current holiday
- A baby with leggings that match yours and a bow bigger than their face
- The best contour job you’ve ever seen
- Eyelash extensions
- Perfect manicure (and probably a pedicure that matches the leggings)
- iPhone7 Plus
- Lingering husband in the back with a miserable look on his face yet, he’s still dressed in J. Crew from head to toe.
I know you might be thinking this is critical and hateful. You’re right, it is. But if you think I’m wrong, then you probably are one. Truthfully, the women weren’t that bad. They didn’t talk to me, but I didn’t have an interest in talking to them.
Fast forward three months and I find myself on the 98th day of school frantically skimming through Google, searching for “100th day of school” ideas. I became annoyed with some of the pictures I saw. Who has time to make shirts and pants for this kind of thing? And, how the heck did they know this optional homework assignment was even coming? More importantly, who in their right mind believes that a child made these? Admit it, lady you only let your kid squeeze the glue bottle!
After finding my easiest option, I used my lunch break to run to Target and purchase the supplies: One poster board with a glitter border, one box of foam sticky letters, and five boxes of band-aids. She “survived 100 days of school.” Turned out great, and I didn’t have to do anything.
My daughter’s school uses an app called ClassDojo, it’s essentially Facebook for her class. I love it for the quick updates, pictures, and communicating with her teacher is a breeze. On the 101st day of school, I receive a Dojo alert that new pictures were posted. For a second I thought I was on Pinterest, not ClassDojo.
Am I the only mom left standing that absolutely refuses to be a Pinterest Mom and complete these projects for their kids? Look, I get it… it’s impossible for a kindergartner to create something that isn’t slightly an eye-sore when it’s hanging on the fridge for six months. But isn’t that the point? When did parents stop letting kids be creative and start worrying so much about how this project will make them look? News flash, it isn’t about you. Lets stop and think about what kind of attitude and expectation this creates.
You’re telling them that any masterpiece they create will never be “pretty enough” for you.
You’re eliminating all opportunities for creativity and the use of their imagination.
You’re showing them that it’s acceptable for someone else to do the work for them.
You’re allowing them to take ownership and pride in something they have had minimal if any, participation in.
In 20 years from now, you’ll sit back, and reality will punch you in the gut. You will have a 25-year old that can’t do laundry, expects a crust-less PBJ for lunch, has zero creativity abilities and lacks critical problem-solving skills. Does the thought of that make the few hours of glory and a handful of “likes” you receive from your flawless Pinterest project worth it? At this point, I hope you (at least) let the kid write their name on it themselves.
Stop putting your Pinterest and Facebook post value ahead of your children’s natural desire to be creative. Not only that, stop projecting your “Facebook persona” off onto your children. What do you think they enjoy more – working on a school project with you or hearing that mommy’s latest Facebook post got 43 likes? And for god’s sake, stop wearing leggings with pumpkins on them.