Ever since Elias started piano lessons he and I have been having a minor battle of wills. I wanted him to transport his books to and from lessons in a bag of some sort. This would keep them in good condition and help them from getting lost or getting left on the seat of the car, etc. Elias always wanted to carry his books. For the first month or so he only had two books so it wasn’t so bad and I let it go. However, as time passed he got more and more books and it got more and more difficult for him to carry them all. Week after week one or more would slip out of his grasp and fall to the ground. Every week I’d tell him it would be easier to carry if he put them in a bag, but he stubbornly refused. One week I even just put them in a bag and handed them to him as we were walking to the car. As soon as his seat belt was buckled he took the piano books out of the bag and set them on his lap, refusing to use it.
Last week, Elias got yet another book, this time full of major scales, triads, inversions, arpeggios and the like. As we walked to the car he dropped them about three times onto the wet, dirty ground (it had been raining). He burst out at me out of frustration. “Mom! How am I supposed to carry all these?” I simply answered that that is why I always tell him it would be easier to bring them in a bag. He seemed to ignore that comment and silently got in the car, buckled his seat belt, and set his piano books next to him. After checking to be sure they were all there, I started the drive home.
About two minutes into the drive home, Elias stated that he wanted to do another sewing project. (For his first project I helped him sew two pillows for Christmas: one for each of his brothers). Now this ain’t my first rodeo, and in seven years I think I can say I’ve become skilled in the motherly art of gentle persuasion/manipulation. I told him that that sounded like an excellent idea. “What fun,” I told him! “Now that you’ve done two pillows, I think the next project to try would be a bag. You can pick the fabric you want for the inside and the outside and we’ll sew it together.” I paused for a while letting him get excited. Then I said, “Hey, maybe you could even keep your piano books in the bag!”
So that, folks, is how I won the bag battle. We went to the fabric store together, and Elias picked out two fabrics: green for the inside, and very appropriately, music note pattern for the outside. Then he chose a canvas for the bag handles. We got home, threw the fabric in the wash, and when it came out, we got to work.
Elias really enjoyed the ironing. He got those fabrics really flat with all of the over ironing that happened. But he was having fun and it wasn’t doing any harm so I let him have at it.
Elias needed quite a bit of help using the machine. He used the foot pedal all by himself, and I taught him about how and when to use the reverse. Guiding the fabric, however, was tough and after a few times going crooked, I decided to do a bit more helping. He was able to do enough, though, that he feels like he made the bag, which is a big win.
We finished sewing the bag this afternoon, and Elias was thrilled. He immediately ran with it down the stairs to show his dad and brothers his hard work. Then you know what the first thing he did was after showing off the bag?
I had him pose for a few photos to show off his bag to the world. Look at how proud he is!