Teaching Em how to Refinish Furniture
For Em's Birthday I gave her an old trunk filled with two gallons of paint that we had used to paint her room, two paint brushes, a sander and a tool kit. It's a trunk that I had decorated with my mom when I was little and I told Em that I would teach her how to refinish furniture. She lit up! She was soo excited.
3 different materials!
And of course, breaks were taken. I wanted this to be fun so I let her really go at her pace. Even on breaks she is processing what we just did and admiring her work.
SKIL Detail Sander. I prepared her by saying, "This is going to be loud, and it's going to vibrate a lot." I turned it on and told her to put her hand on top of mine so she could feel it, then I removed my hand and she was off and sanding!
After we painted the trunk, she went to bed and I finished it with some Polyurethane.
The next day, I decided to make a false bottom. And that's where we'll continue next time - making the false bottom and then add material and padding to the top. I loved her idea for decorating the false bottom. :)
While I taught her a number of things, I can tell you, finding a way to teach my little one how to refinish furniture safely was and is a challenge for me. I'm a bit controlling - especially when it comes to potentially dangerous stuff. But when I step back and think about it, the way I handle this is the same way I teach everything else. I talk about it, show it, hover to watch and then I let go and I'm there when and if she needs me. I guess this is the way for every parent.
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