‘Tis the season of good intentions, unfinished craft projects, DIY fails, and lots of social media stress and comparitis. Maybe you are already feeling some DIY holiday mom guilt – like you should be making everything from scratch by candlelight in the wee hours of the night. But here’s the thing: these projects might be pretty, but they won’t make things perfect, and you will also be tired. It is nice if you want to make DIY dog magic, but if you would rather sleep, that’s OK too.
Whether you are a dog mom or a kid mom or a both mom, no one actually notices if you create your holiday village by hand or buy it at the dollar store. Same thing goes for holiday dog sweaters and fancy pants dog treats. You probably can’t buy fancy pants dog treats at the dollar store, but you can buy them online.
True confession: I love the IDEA of DIY, but realistically I don’t have the time, attention span, or follow through to actually finish any of these DIY dog projects – and I’m OK with that.
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Confessions of a Non-DIY Dog Mom
1. I have never baked a homemade dog treat in my life.
Ruby eats well. She enjoys her human grade, grain-free, organic, all natural, fortified with fairy dust, responsibly sourced, STORE BOUGHT food. But sometimes I wonder if that’s good enough. Should I be spending my three minutes of free time in my tiny kitchen making pumpkin dog cookies and homemade beef stew? Keep in mind I have a history of burning stuff, forgetting key ingredients, and kitchen disasters.
Nope, it’s OK to buy and not bake.
2. I don’t know how to sew, knit, or gift wrap.
Ruby is kind of known for her wardrobe with a nice collection of sweaters, fleece jackets, and even a fancy costume or two. Sometimes I get asked if her sweaters are handmade. My answer is either yes, but not by me, or no we shop at Target. There’s also a little thing called ETSY that gives you the DIY experience without the DIY headache. It’s like DIY virtual reality.
To quote the always-wise Grumpy Cat, “I tried sewing once and it was awful.”
3. I don’t have time for timesavers, space savers, or tricks that make life easier.
A cleverly designed shelf or adorable basket near the door for Ruby’s mass-produced coat and leash would be nice, but tossing them in a big pile on the chair is fun, too. If I am feeling really ambitious, I hang them in the closet with our coats. Truthfully, all coats (and lots of clean laundry) usually end up in the chair near the door – and this comfy pile makes a pretty great DIY dog bed for Ruby and Teddy. And you know what really saves time and makes life easier? Not stressing about the mess!
4. I don’t know how to artfully photograph a dog treat or storage bin.
I like taking photos of animals and kids, but I’m just not that inspired by things. Of course, I enjoy looking at pretty photos of cookies and storage bins – kind of in the same away I enjoy photos of faraway places I will never visit. Sadly, I don’t have time to make any of these DIY projects much less learn to photograph them.
5. I sometimes feel non-DIY dog mom guilt.
The truth is I don’t bake or sew or make clever crafty things because I hate following directions. I am “a just wing-it” kind of person and that doesn’t really fly with DIY dog culture. For me, the fun part is going to a craft store and buying a bunch of supplies I will never use. I start projects and never finish them. There’s a whole sad closet of unfinished craft projects in our basement – kind of like the Island of Misfit Toys only with glue sticks and rubber stamps.
I’m not very organized, I don’t always write things down, and my drawers and closets are a disaster. In my defense, I can roll with the punches, handle stress like a champ, and almost never crack under pressure. Plus, I have gained the reputation as the funny mom by my daughter and her friends because I do things in my own weird way. Truthfully, I would rather be funny than crafty – because crafty only gets you so far when push comes to shove (and the holidays are sometimes full of emotional pushing and shoving).
So please just relax. Don’t stress, don’t compare yourself to others (and by others I mean the people with the pretty cookie photos on social media), and just enjoy the holidays in your own way! Neither your pets nor your kids really care about all this pretty, impractical DIY stuff anyway – they just want you to be calm, present, and happy.
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