I usually really enjoy being part of the Netflix #Streamteam. Each month I get an email showcasing some programs the family and I might like to watch, usually all around a particular theme. In the email, there are also crafts and usually, recipes to try- both linked to the month’s theme – and then I watch some of the programs with the kids, try some craft or cooking and write about the experience. I also like to throw in a few extras such as coloring pages or word searches that I find for my kids so readers can enjoy them too.
This month was, however, entirely different for me. I received the email and, as usual, the kids and I talked about which programs we would be interested in checking out together. This month’s theme was “Someday I will” and featured a Netflix original special “Ever After High Spring Unsprung” and two Netflix kids programs premiering this month “Meko Mermaids’ & “Richie Rich” – no problem there. For the big kids, one of the suggested programs was “The Art of Flight: The Series” – perfect for our aspiring pilot who spends every spare moment at Air Cadet activities. There was also “The Mind of a Chef” with Anthony Bourdain – just right for our eldest son the foodie and the other big kid suggestions “Top Gear” & “Dragons Den” were both programs the family might watch together – perfect. For the younger kids “Sid the Science Kid” was already a firm favorite, and “SciGirls” was a new one that Evey wanted to try out straight away.
It was when I got to the craft that it began to unravel for me. The craft itself was great. A cute idea to inspire your kids to aim high and showcase their hopes and aspirations. The idea was to have them write down their goals, cut out pictures from magazines, use stickers or drawings and make a banner to hang up in a spot where they would see it regularly, and it could inspire them to work towards those goals. The instructions are here:
What You’ll Need
- A variety of stars cut from patterned cardstock paper in different sizes
- Photos of things your kids want to be/do
- Optional – stickers, markers, glitter glue, etc. – anything to “pretty” it up
How To Make It
1. Lay your ribbon out on the floor in a straight line. Glue your stars onto the ribbon until you have used up all your stars. Allow to dry.
2. Glue your pictures onto the stars – 1 picture for each star – or write words of encouragement. Allow to dry.
3. You can leave your banner as is, or you can pretty it up with stickers, jewels, glitter glue, etc.
What could be wrong with that I hear you ask? Nothing, I would say, it’s very cute, and Evey would love to make one. It’s just that when it came to Gabriel things are quite different.
For those of you that don’t know, Gabriel has autism and apraxia. He has lots of trouble forming words, and only those of us who are very close to him can understand a few of the words he can form. Mostly it takes a great deal of time & patience and pantomime for him to communicate even the simplest thing. His development is all over the place. He has just turned eight and likes to build robots, play Minecraft and watch space themed programs. He is also still in diapers, has to be spoon fed and will always be dependent on us for his basic needs. He will never live independently.
This isn’t something we think about on a day to day basis, but this craft bought it home to me on a day I was feeling a bit down anyway. How can you possibly make a banner like this with your child who will probably never be able to even take care of himself?
But then Gabe looked up at me with that smile of his and everything was OK again. He may not do many of the things that we take for granted ourselves and in our children, but he does so many more things that we stop doing as we grow. He has a beaming smile for everyone friends and strangers alike. He loves to cuddle up on the sofa with us and read a book or watch TV. He never lies, and he has a totally innocent outlook on the world. When I look at him I see the many years ahead filled with hugs and smiles and cuddles on the sofa with his favorite TV shows and how many parents are lucky enough to enjoy that with their child for ever?
So this month we decide not to do the craft but we settled down and watched all of the suggested shows, and I savored every moment that I got to spend with him.
If you would like to watch what we did (and I particularly recommend the Ever After High special) you can find links to all of the shows here:
1. Ever After High (2/6)
2. Mako Mermaids (2/13)
3. Richie Rich (2/20)
1. Sid the Science Kid
3. Fireman Sam: To the Rescue
4. Bob the Builder: Building from Scratch
1. The Art of Flight: The Series
2. The Mind of a Chef
3. Richard Hammond’s Top Gear Uncovered
4. Dragon’s Den