The big cleanup
The big cleanup
Parent24 Editor, Scott Dunlop
We normally try and make something nice for my kid’s mom on Mother’s Day. At the very least, a card. This year, we tried something different. We had some artist’s card, so I asked them to each do a painting.

Hannah stared at her card for a long time, trying to think of something to draw. While she did that, I drew her. She quite liked that idea, so she started to draw herself, too. In her picture, she’s smiling, wearing a long dress because, well, legs are hard to draw.

Jonah looked at the kitchen wall for inspiration. And drew that. He drew my floating shelves with the wine glasses, the electricity box, the stove and the coffee and sugar jars. Lots of detail.

James was busy with his school project, researching drugs on the internet. (I guess I should have looked over his shoulder more while he was doing that!) But then he did his painting, too. A very technical drawing of the bookcase I have in the corridor.

So that’s how my ex-wife came to have three paintings of MY house as presents for Mother’s Day…

It’s a good thing we get on ok!

I asked everyone on Facebook whether or not they’d ever got a bad gift for Mother’s Day, and one of our friends said “Even if it was just a hug and a kiss, I loved it”. Thanks for that, Estelle- that’s a good way to think.

It’s difficult to direct the creativity of children. They draw their inspiration from a wonderful place many adults haven’t visited since they were children themselves. I reckon some of the best times I’ve had with my kids are when I’m up to my elbows in clay, glitter glue or paints, and we’re all trying to get some imaginary world in our heads out onto the page or the kitchen counter. Having a pre-school teacher as a girlfriend really keeps that inner-child going.

Paint can be washed off; clay, too. Glitter, unfortunately, stays forever, making fabulous appearances at work meetings or PTA functions... Here’s a helpful tip for those of you who don’t know what to do with your child’s artworks: If you don’t have the space to save the actual art, take a picture of it and create an online gallery for your child to remember those stick people, fiercely-clawed dinosaurs and smiling flowers.

If your fridge-gallery is overloaded with crayon art, and your Mother’s Day chocolate stash is running low, you can still participate in our special competition in celebration of moms. We have some great prizes, although none as special as a hug and a kiss from your own child.

What was your favourite gift that you received from your child on Mother's Day. Send us an email to and you could win a R250 voucher.

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