Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The Kindness Rocks Project

So there's been a thing recently called kindness rocks.  The idea is, you paint a rock, put it somewhere in a public place, and it makes people smile when they see it.  And if the finder wants, they can take a picture with it and put it on Facebook, "hide" it somewhere else, or just leave it.

Bearcub & I've been finding them around the pool while waiting on Ladybug and Turkey's swim lessons, but the girls just discovered the rocks today.  They started spotting them while we were driving around town and asking me to stop and get them.  So I thought this would be a great thing to participate in.  I quickly developed a grand plan to paint rocks and leave them at each place we stopped on our way to the UP.  So I stopped for a can of spray paint.  Thankfully, that's all I invested.  
When we got home, Ladybug was pouting over her sister having two rocks while she only had one.  Kindness rocks already backfiring.  So I sent her inside while I set Turkey up finding and washing rocks.  After our plumbing work, we have an abundance of rocks in our yard, so she quickly collected quite a few.  I spray painted them white and didn't have to wait long for them to dry in the heat.  I sent both girls out to bring in a couple of rocks, and then the kindness rocks really backfired.  I heard wails, and went out to find that Ladybug hit Turkey on the head with a relatively heavy rock.  Why?  "She didn't hold open the door."  I tried to understand how an unheld door justifies hitting someone with a rock on the head, couldn't do it, insisted on an apology, insisted on another apology that sounded halfway sincere, and then herded everyone inside with the weapons, aka kindness rocks. 

Then the painting/drawing started.  My mistake was thinking I actually wanted to make people smile with these things.  One an un-named child painted was supposed to be a "silly face," but it looked like something that was going to eat you.  It was a creation of nightmares.  I talked her into letting me fix it, and we eventually turned it into a smiling carrot.  In the meantime, paint was getting everywhere, water was getting spilled, lunch was delayed, flies kept buzzing, the grumpiness factor kept rising... 

Thankfully, rather than sticking with the project because by golly this is a good thing and we should contribute, I came to my senses.  After two rocks each, I called the whole thing off.  

Cause here's the thing.  There are many good things in the world.  Lots of worthwhile projects.  Lots of great activities.  But that doesn't meant my family has to do all of them.  And we certainly don't have to do them right now.  This might be a great thing when they're 8, 9, & 10.  But at 3, 4, & 5, it's backfiring.  And that's okay.  

In a few days, I might let them paint the rest that are already white.  But I'll be encouraging simplicity. Simple patterns and shapes, that's it. And if it still looks like something that's going to eat your face off... oh well.  Someone can throw it in the river if they find it disturbing.  Might give them some stress relief.  

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