Making crayons, and the Professionalization of Parenthood

Our first Valentine's Day coincided with finding a new crafting idea to try out with Little Man. So we made custom crayons for his classmates to share with his friends.

Making stuff. © Cheese Curds & Kimchi

The final result! © Cheese Curds & Kimchi

They turned out super cute and we both had a lot of fun doing them! (Find details on making crayons, HERE.)

It's not really a big deal. Just something parents do with their kids. So it was very curious to me to hear a comment from one of The Man's co-workers when he told them about our Valentine's Day crafting.

"Boy, she is really taking this 'mom thing' seriously, isn't she?"

To give a little slack, this was said by a 50-something woman without children. But...yeah. Of course I take this "mom thing" seriously! It's something we waited, planned, chose to do. And like the other things in my life, I want to be the best at it.

But do I take it *too* serious?


I was watching yet another parenting video when I heard a phrase that really resonated with me---"the professionalization of parenthood".

Hold the presses...is this what I'm doing? In all my efforts to be a great mom, am I professionalizing my role? I know that I'm Type-A-ing my way through parenthood. Reading all the books I can, trying to cram as much into the day as I can. Trying to figure out where we are on the continuum of attachment. Making sure I am giving him plenty of opportunities for explorations, creativity, etc.

OK, I guess I am professionalizing being a mom. That can be a good thing, right?

I think so. As long as it's not too much of a good thing. As long as I'm balancing my efforts to be a great parent with his needs to be a kid.

Like so much about parenthood, finding the balance is challenging for me. I'm a person who likes specifics. Like following a recipe. And the required "recipe" for parenting changes day to day for us. Sometimes it's minute to minute.

Hell, I guess that is true of everything in life, isn't it?


Here's the video that kicked off this whole chain of thought for me. What's your take on it?

Regarding free play, I know I need to work on this a bit. After picking up Little Man from daycare after a long day, I feel like my time is so limited with him and I want to make the most of it when we come home. It's hard for me to just watch him play and not play with him.

But I also have to remember that he's had a long day too, and nothing feels better than just unwinding when you get home, and doing something fun and unstructured.


OK. Enough deep thinking for the day. Going to find some play-doh and chill out.

Prescription For Play


  1. I totally support the video! Some extra activities are great but overall too often kids are constantly scheduled and I've seen many examples of the negative backlash from this. Unstructured play and relaxation really is a magical learning experience. It makes me sad that this stance is not valued more by society.

  2. I say keep up the projects, research, etc as long as they're fun...for everyone! I think down time is important for moms and dads too, and its OK to step back and let the kids figure out how to entertain themselves.

    And the crayon project is adorable!


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