My regular readers will know that I hate doing crafts. What’s worse than having to make an Easter bonnet with your kids? Having to make an Easter bonnet WITHOUT your kids (because you forgot about the imminent parade and had already sent one to nursery and the other to holiday club. FFS).
So, here’s how to make a cracking Easter bonnet, ON YOUR OWN, whilst blaspheming and punching yourself in the face.
YOU WILL NEED:
A straw hat.
Paints and a paintbrush.
A small plastic pot (like the sort you freeze kids’ food in).
10 Easter chicks (not real ones).
A packet of mini eggs (plus an extra pack for scoffing).
A piece of ribbon.
String and a big plastic needle (those ones you get in those annoying kits that try to convince you a five year old can sew when they totally, totally can’t).
Scissors and glue.
Childcare (so you can really, really focus and enjoy this).
Mister Maker (because you’re crap at crafts, remember?).
Cost: about £100 (including childcare and gin)
Time: about 3 hours (that you’ll never get back)
Demise: seconds (if it’s windy, which it obviously will be)
1. Start by making your bird’s nest. Smother the sides of the small plastic pot in glue and wrap it in the fake grass, tucking it over the rim and inside. Stuff a bit more inside to make a nice, cushiony nest. If your pot still has remnants of spag bol or fish pie, now is about the time you’ll realise this.
2. Stick your chicks around the rim by hooking their feet under the grass. If your kids have got to them first, they’ll probably have lost their shape and hang lethargically over the edge, looking like they’re contemplating ending it all. Who could blame them? Easter sucks if you’re a fluffy, yellow chick.
3. Fill your ‘nest’ with an assortment of coloured mini eggs. (Or the ones you haven’t eaten yet.) You could stick these down but it’s really fun to watch them all tumble out of the nest and smash on the floor, as your child models the hat later. You might want to give the nest a haircut and trim any stray hairs. If you find yourself using straighteners and hairspray, you’ve gone too far.
4. Time to paint your hat! (I don’t know why this is such a gleeful proposition, worthy of an exclamation mark, but Mister Maker always looks ecstatic at this point so you’d best too). Forget Easter pastels or sunny, spring colours. You’ll be using murky greens, blues and something that used to resemble pink because your kids have already trashed the paints. Decorate it however you like. If you follow the pattern I’ve used here and someone comments it looks a bit like a sombrero, just point out the bird’s nest. ‘Der. If it was a sombrero it would have a bottle of Tequila in the middle, wouldn’t it?’ EVERYBODY knows that.
5. Glue the ribbon onto the hat. This takes patience. And lot’s of glue. There’s no actual technique as far as I can tell, but then again I’m rubbish at crafts so I’m probably (definitely) not the best person to ask.
6. The moment NO ONE has been waiting for. Time to fix the nest on. This is where you need that ridiculously huge plastic needle you keep picking up off the floor and almost throwing away. How smug do you feel, now that you know exactly where it is? Plonk the nest on top of the hat and bring the needle and string up inside the hat and out, threading it right into the grass and back down into the hat. Repeat until you have got all the way around and it’s secure. Or you’ve given up completely and thrown the nest across the room.
7. ‘Ta-dah!’ There’s obviously no one to say this to, as your kids are out and you’re doing this alone. A grown woman in her 30s fannying around with crafts when there’s actual real s*** to be getting on with. Still. You feel a strange sense of achievement and can’t wait to show your kids their hats. They’re going to love you. THIS must be what it feels like to be a proper, good mum.
8. Being a proper mum’s rubbish. Your kids are totally underwhelmed by their hats. One refuses to wear it. The other just wants to eat the eggs. And they aren’t at all interested in how you made the nests (how do they not want to know that?).
9. At the parade, neither of your kids win a sodding thing. First prize goes to a hat with a stuffed toy sellotaped to it. Yeah, great. So your hat’s windproof? And you know how to use Sellotape. Woo hoo. WHY DOES NO ONE WANT TO KNOW HOW I MADE THE BLOOMING BIRDS’ NESTS?
10. All go home in a bit of a mood. Kids fed up because their lives are just so frigging dreadful and unfair (broken mini eggs will cause this sort of melancholy). Whilst you sob in disbelief that you’ve completely wasted your one child free day of the Easter holidays. Doing crafts. ON YOUR OWN. (It’s an actual conspiracy, I’m telling you.)