It was the 'Hallowe'en Half Term' Craft Cafe on Thursday.
This marks the start of our 6th year! How time flies... and what a gorgeous sight to meet the children who have grown so much over the years.
Some of 'my girls' are too grown up now and this sort of environment is too tame for them. One of these girls came along to help me with the pom-pom spider table this time *waves at Jo* and that is such a warming thing. Community, Craft, Childhood,Friendship...
And, with the passing of time, older children make way for new little hands and faces. I love meeting the parents and carers who all 'amaze' at how much effort their children put in to their works. I enjoy the barrage of questions about how and why!? we put on these workshops.
The continual comments to me "you should be a teacher, Kirsty - you should you know"
There is another 'me'... inside me (if you know what i mean) and she is fat with happiness and home baking. She has 4 children of her own and a few fostered children. We sit round the farmhouse table 'Home Educating' and make models from Junk and obsess over making bird feeding fat balls.
For many years i thought that is who i would be.
So, selfishly, The Craft Cafe is my way of slipping into that 'Other Me' skin and playing at that life for a while.
I LOVED it when 4 year old Meg was shouting Kirsty... kirsty... K I R S T EEEY at the other end of the room because she wanted help making a bead necklace and did i have "any more Sea Beads"? Who knows what she meant by Sea Beads? 5 months previous that child wouldn't join it without sitting on her Mothers lap and now she is hollering for help from 10 meters away.
And generally, i am a person who hates chaos. I am not good with noise. I find children very hard work and i like to craft alone in silence.
So why, oh why, do i find myself stood in the centre of this mess - telling children how great their painty created mess is, positively welling up with pride for them and 'loving' my own centralness to all this madness?
It is the Other Me.
I like her. I would want to be her friend if i met her outside the village shop. I would want to sit in her messy kitchen drinking tea and having a gentle gossip. And weirdly, i would love to go home to my own neat little house afterward and enjoy calm and silence.
Maybe, this is the secret to our long enjoyed success of the Craft Cafe?
Many parents are putting on this Other Me overcoat? We are all enjoying the feeling of facilitating 2 hours of creativity and fun - where we all live in messy kitchens and let our children be crazed with creatvity?
Just thinking out loud..... x