Monday, May 5, 2008

How to Handle Creative Kids?....

Can I ask a question?

What in the world am I supposed to do with this?...

If it isn't bad enough that we have PEOPLE all over the house (and a large dog) we now have paper people to deal with.

Where do I put something like this? I can't just throw it away, it is made in my daughter's image. On it are inscribed the most important events in her little life:

Her birthday, she learned to walk, her little brother was born, we moved, she lost a tooth, went to kindergarten, got a dog, played basketball and she got a Weii. This paper doll has told me a lot about my daughter.

So here is my problem (one of many I'm afraid), I can't bring myself to part with projects my children have put so much of themselves into.

Of course this recent math experiment was an exception:

Who knew fractions could taste so yummy?

Though I get frustrated with the mess my great fear is that someday all I will find laying around the house are things like Algebra homework. And since I don't understand anything beyond the most basic math the only thing I will learn about my kids from those papers is how the teacher graded them.

So back to my original question, what should I do with this precious paper clone my 8 yr. old has so lovingly created?

And while you are at it, any ideas for this?......


elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Each of my kids have a huge Rubbermaid tub. I weed through them periodically and only keep the stuff that means the most. All of their "Christmas" makings like wreaths, etc. have their own box. I string them along the archway during Christmas. As far as artwork, I have these wonderful frames from Pottery Barn that allow me to change out pictures they've done from time to time. Also, I select certain things to laminate and keep in a 3 ring binder(each child has their own). In those binders are 12 dividers (one for each grade of school) where I include award certificates, school pictures, and report cards. I'm not a scrapbooker, so this is the best I can do, but it's simple and works.

I also have a 3 ring binder for Christmas, where I keep the annual Christmas letters, Santa picture for the year, and Christmas family photo. (also any letters to and from Santa). The kids love pulling this out each year and remembering.

As for the huge paper doll...does Office Depot have a laminater that big? Roll it up, paper clip it, and stick it in her "tub" if you can't part with it.

Hope this helps.


Amy said...

Elaine's suggestion is great...
Or you could move to a house with 2,000 square feet of closet space...or, I once read in an organizing book about taking pictures of the artwork.....and making a special book for them....that way they (and you) can look at the art anytime they (or you) want to, but it doesn't take over your entire house.:)

Good luck!
That project of herself is really precious though.:)

God Bless,

P.S. Just thought I'd tell you the word verification that I have to type in for this comment spells "snail"...for some reason that makes me giggle....I have no life.:)

CrownLaidDown said...

I so enjoy your posts, Kelley!

I'm with Elaine. One rubbermaid tub per child. Someday it will be theirs to decide what to do with all the fun stuff.


PS Your jean post below cracks me up!

Jamie said...

No new suggestions from me. I was going to suggest a rubbermaid tub, but Elaine seems to have it covered. The big paper person is so cute, I wouldn't be able to part with it either. Maybe you could hang it in the back of a closet to keep it safe.

Kim said...

I too do the rubbermaid tub. I also created a scrapbook (like the kind you do for photo's) for written reports, cute little projects, awards...etc......I displayed this type of scrapbook at Ashley's graduation open house last year and it was a hit. Especially with the parent who had NO idea..what to do with such stuff.

I LOVE the cute cut-out person. So adorable.


luvmy4sons said...

Yeah. It is a tough one! A large box in a large attic might be an answer! Precious!

Joyful said...

Kelley, you've basically already done my idea without knowing it. TAKE PICTURES! My son made one of those self-portrait paper dolls too, and he even coloured it wearing the EXACT outfit he had on. I took a picture of him standing beside his 'twin' and then threw it away. I would collect his art work and projects, display them on the floor, have him pose with them, take a picture then throw the projects/art away. It's impossible to keep it all. He does have a bin of some special treasures, and of course I keep all his awards etc...but, I think recording it on film is the best way to preserve the memory.

Hope you've had a good day!
Love & prayers,

Ang baylis said...

You probably don't want my advice because I had every single project in my basement until I FINALLY got rid of some of them right before they graduated from high school! I am NOT exaggerating! I wish I would have taken pictures of all of the projects and made a slideshow of them on DVD along with some of their favorite music. Sorry, I'm not much help! I still LOVE to see their handwriting! So so special! You are a great mother and must be so so organized with all of those kids!

Love you,

p.s. You are such a kind friend for writing the sweetest comments on my blog! They mean the world to me. To think your life is so busy and you still take the time to bless me! I am honored to have you as my friend!

Melanie said...

Oh, Kelley.. I completely understand your dilemma. I have a basket that all school work, etc goes into and I sort thru it from time to time. Howver, I really would like to find a better system.

I don't guess I have a lot of helpful input, but I do sympathize with you. :)

Pam said...


I do several of these things, and I think my favorite is taking photos . . . maybe with the artist present so you can keep track of who made what.

The rest of the small things are hidden in my . . . ah . . . panties drawer. I suppose that's not the best place, but they don't get disturbed by anyone besides me.

I loved the "paper person". Made my heart all squishy, and she's not even mine.

SweetPea said...

I was going to say you could hang the paper person on the back of your bedroom door so it's not always seen but you'd see it when you open/close the door.

All the other ideas are great...take photos and then store in a rubbermaid tub for a period of time.

Feathering My Nest said...

Kelley, How absolutely adorable. Oh your daughter is so cute! Sometimes I file the best items my kids make, into a file cabinet, or things which are not flat, I put in a large plastic container. I tell the children that we cannot save everything, but to save the very best things. Sometimes I take a picture of something cool that we have done together, then toss it, but save the picture.

Have a great Tuesday, Kathi

Jenny said...

I don't know what you can do with it, but I have some of the same type of items in my basement!

It looks cute though!

Christina said...

No ideas here, I can't even figure out where to put my own kids art work so a lot of help I would be.

i used to make paper people too. Once I made myself a twin sister out of paper so I totally get paper people.

Linda said...

Kelley, I'm too overcome with empty arms syndrome to give you an objective answer, but I see everyone has done so already, so you're in good hands. I would just say, don't thow it away until your heart can part with it. If you think it's precious now, you will hardly be able to look at it someday. Sorry to be a downer--this is the stage of life I'm in, unfortunately. I'm very sentimental about my kids.