When you have a baby, you’re constantly trying to find ways of capturing time and making memories. They grow so quickly that you want to bottle their milestones and growth, and keep them on a shelf, forever to look at and fondly remember. So with my husband about to celebrate his first Father’s Day, I wracked my brain to think of a creative way of commemorating this special Dad moment. I thought about how my husband loves tea and how tea also reminds him of his late father, and then my brain fell on mugs. Why don’t I help with decorating a mug for him with our baby – a useful item that can also be looked at with fond sentimentality.
Off we went to Color Cafe in Hyde Park. They have a wide array of plain bisque items to choose from: from plates to tea pots, mugs to ornamental items for children’s rooms. So if you’re not so keen on the mug idea, then you could try a plate, or wall tile, or even a mosaic. We chose a mug and I decided to keep the decoration simple – a handprint of our baby’s right hand. At 5 and a half months, he’ll never again have such small hands – hands that actually fit onto the side of a mug completely. The experience was so much fun – me with trying to control our son and make sure he didn’t stick his paint-covered hands in his mouth; and he with experiencing the new textures of wet paint and dry, unbaked ceramics. Our son enjoyed looking at all the different sights in the shop – the different paint colours, the polka dot table cloth we worked on. The space really seemed to capture his attention and captivate him for the hour or so that we were there. It was also a good idea taking a friend with to hold him when I needed to get all the supplies together, or paint his name on the bottom of the mug. Needless to say, he enjoyed the outing and activity as much as I did – so much so that he was asleep before we even got out of the parking lot.
If you’re reading this in a place where there isn’t a spot like Color Café, there are other ways your can create a treasured memory. Obviously there are loads of helpful DIY hints and ideas on Pintrest, but a couple I’ve found to be special are making a mould of your baby’s hands or feet, or simply making a print on a piece of paper and placing it in a beautiful frame. And then there’s always the very hassle-free option of simply making a card with a print on it. You can use simple acrylic paint or even children’s paint pots that you just add water to. Whatever you decide to do, make sure your little one is in a calm state when you paint with them. This will ensure that both of you enjoys the experience. When I created a card for my husband for his birthday and our baby was only 2 months old, I waited until he was asleep before I attempted anything. If your child is older and can hold a paint brush on their own, getting them to paint the piece is also a unique way to make that one of a kind momento. The point is creating something with your baby for a loved one who will really treasure that special keepsake forever.
My son and I created something together that his Dad can treasure as he sips on his nightly cup of tea, and I can cherish the memory of how much fun we had making this special gift for him.