I am back from a several-day trip hanging out with extended family in a pretty place, and there are happy things about being back home with all my usual things in all their usual places, but also I am feeling a little wan and sad. I made coffee this morning just for me, without the happy anticipatory feeling that soon other people would be coming into the kitchen stretching and saying “Mmmmm, COFFEE!” and then standing around chatting as we appreciate the view out the window.
Well. I have items to heartily, heartily recommend for mixed-age-group gatherings: STICKER-BY-NUMBER BOOKS. I brought some easier ones (marketed for kids) and some harder ones (marketed for adults), and they all got used. My six-year-old nephew found the easier ones completely doable on his own; my eight-year-old niece did a couple of the easier ones and then wanted to try a harder one; she found it difficult but doable. My sister-in-law and I both worked on difficult ones and found them mesmerizing; we also found it was good mental practice in letting things go when they can’t be perfect. Here are the ones I bought:
Zoo Animals (easier).
Under the Sea (easier).
Vintage Travel Posters (harder).
I really do suggest going into it prepared for things not to line up PERFECTLY, or you could slightly lose your mind. But some of us could use that kind of practice, and the pleasing thing is that even when things didn’t line up exactly they still looked really good. My nephew was not bothered by things not lining up, and had many little white lines between stickers, and his finished results still looked great.