Crafty Ideas Elma Family Kitty Photography Pip {the ordinary moments}

Let’s Go Fly a Kite


It’s been a project in patience.  A project to demonstrate slow cumulative action, and the drying time of glue.

We started during one of Elma’s increasingly rare nap times.  She was asleep in her cot wrapped around her blankie and teddies and Pip, if not actually asleep, was sat quite contentedly in his chair watching his biggest sister and giving her his biggest smiles.  We played dominoes, we played snakes and ladders and still there was peace from upstairs. So I asked Kitty what she’d like to do.

“Make a kite!” came back the immediate response.

Well OK then.

We found some giant lolly sticks in the back of the craft cupboard and glued them together in a diamond-ish sort of shape and set them aside to dry.  And there they sat on the shelf for a couple of weeks, not exactly forgotten, but certainly overlooked in the bustle and razzmatazz of Christmas. So it wasn’t until the New Year that we came back to the idea of our kites.  The next stage was clearly to add our kite paper but a kite just isn’t worthy of the name until it is also glittery (or so I’m told), and so out came the glitter glue and the gold and silver pens and Kitty and Elma coloured and glued and generally made everything sparkly, and then set them aside to dry.

It was only this week that we got around to actually attaching the paper to the frames, sticking on a ribbon as a tail, and adding a bit of string, and then back they went onto the top of the dresser, away from the tiny curious hands that wanted to prod and poke and just see if they were ready.

But finally, finally they were and we set off for our afternoon walk with two small pink kites sticking out of one pocket and the end of a ball of cotton yarn and a pair of scissors in the other (I swear, with everything I carry to the park either stuck in my pockets or draped around my person – including Pip – I must look like the Mummy equivalent of a one man band).

It was a beautiful afternoon, cold but bright and sunny, and the one advantage of our playpark for kite flying is that it’s on the top of a hill so there’s always a breeze. And this is where I’d love to tell you that our little homemade kites took off first go and swooped and soared in that big blue sky while we stood below, gazing up at them in awe and having some sort of quintessentially British conversation, probably about the weather, as if were in a tableaux entitled ‘perfect parenting on a blustery day’ but I’m afraid I’m going to dash your illusions.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

Our kites are glittery, they are pink, they are made from kite paper, but they are also made from four giant lolly sticks and the thickest bit of ribbon in the ribbon tin, chosen primarily for its purple and spottiness and not for any aerodynamic considerations.Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

The best we can say is that they fluttered, rather than flew. The could catch the wind and swirl up on an eddy, only to come crashing down again as it blew past but they were never going to seriously take off, despite Kitty’s very best efforts running up and down the playing field.Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

I think the most success we had with them was when I held the ends of a fairly short string above my head which somewhat defeats the purpose of making them and bringing them for the girls to play with.  So we played instead, Kitty running with all her might and trying to look around at her kite at the same time, while Elma plodded along a little more thoughtfully, trailing her kite in her wake heedless of mud or squelchy puddles in the way.

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

One of these days I’ll get a proper kite and take Kitty, Elma and Pip up to the playing field on a windy day and it will swoop and soar and do loop the loops and all the fun things you remember from your own smaller kite flying days (hopefully minus the moment when your string breaks and the kite swoops and soars straight into a rough December sea; at last an advantage of being so very inland) and I know that we’ll have a wonderful time, and probably more than a few squabbles about whose turn it is to hold the kite string. But that’s way off in the future, something to save for the older versions of my little ones.

Our time now wasn’t really about making kites that actually flew for more than a millisecond at a time, so much as the making; making something just because it popped up in Kitty’s imagination.


Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life

The flying, or lack thereof was just the icing on the cake.

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  • Seychellesmama 11/01/2015 at 7:30 am

    Ahhh I love that this was a project you kept coming back to that took time, and of course lots of glitter to make!!
    The image of a mummy version of a one man band made me giggle, so cute!!
    I also love that it totally doesn’t matter that the kites didn’t really fly 🙂
    A lovely lovely post!! Xx

  • Anna-Marie 11/01/2015 at 8:14 am

    I adore this Carie and such a lovely thing to do 🙂 Fluttering is still good enough for little ones! Gorgeous photos xx

  • Rachel 11/01/2015 at 8:21 am

    What a wonderful project to see through with the girls. We took a kite to the beach when we were in Brighton last year. To be honest most of my kite memories are of the dragging and fluttering rather than the swooping and soaring. I trust you sang “lets go fly a kite” throughout the experience 😉 xx

  • Not A Frumpy Mum 11/01/2015 at 8:32 am

    I really don’t think it matters that they didn’t fly all that well. It sounds like you had so much fun making them and trying to get them to fly that the fact they didn’t isn’t that important. I remember trying to fly kites with my dad as a kid, they never flew but we had lots of fun running up and down the field trying. xx

  • Jenny 11/01/2015 at 10:17 am

    Should we call it let’s go drag a kite? hahaha Still so cute. I used to love kite flying so much when I was growing up. Haven’t done it in years. Lovely moment. #ordinarymoments

  • Kim 11/01/2015 at 11:29 am

    It looks to me like she still had the best time trying to get the kite up. My little man will spend hours in the summer running with a kite…it is a great way to use up extra energy 🙂

  • sally 11/01/2015 at 11:47 am

    Definitely process is the important part! And if they survived the trip to the park, it sounds like those kites would look lovely displayed up on a wall somewhere.

  • Rachel @ Parenthood Highs and Lows 11/01/2015 at 1:01 pm

    What a lovely thing to do, even if it hasn’t flown up high! Doing one on one things with the kids like this is so important #theordinarymoments

  • Alexandra @dontcallmestepmummy 11/01/2015 at 1:53 pm

    This is so lovely. I would’ve loved this memory as a child even if they didn’t fly. I especially like the fact it took time to do together. Teaching diligence and completion is awesome. Beautiful xx #ordinarymoments

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:10 pm

      thank you – I hope it’s something they remember fondly – that or I’ll have to remind them!!

  • sustainablemum 11/01/2015 at 3:03 pm

    This post made me smile and chuckle 🙂 Wonderful, making memories in the best possible way.

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:09 pm

      thank you 🙂

  • Carley Biblin 11/01/2015 at 3:23 pm

    What a great project! A learning experience, to be sure. And the best way to learn is for the idea to start with the child, continue with adult support and moderate intervention, and end with lots of running and playing at the park.

    I went to an indoor kite flying festival recently where I got to try out several glider-style kites. There was one tiny one that looked to be covered in a thin plastic film like a grocery bag (but more expensive, of course). Another was a yo-yo-type kite that glided by yanking it around. Kites are such amazing devices that come in many shapes, sizes, and materials. I hope their kite-making adventure continues with more experimentation, and running and playing at the park, too.

    Happy weekend!

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:09 pm

      Oh wow that sounds incredible – I didn’t even know you could have indoor kite flying festivals – I wonder if they ever have one near me …!

  • Natalie 11/01/2015 at 4:09 pm

    Wonderful post Carie. Its on our to-do list too. but the thought that counts. something so simple from your little ones imagination created a lovely little day out for you, regardless of the lack of flight 😉 x

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:07 pm

      It was so much fun – even without any actual flying – but then playing with the glitter glue is never going to go down badly in our house!

  • Caroline (Becoming a SAHM) 11/01/2015 at 4:53 pm

    Aw sorry to hear they didn’t fly very well but it still looks like they had so much fun running about with them! Xx

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:06 pm

      They weren’t phased at all – it’s possible they didn’t even really realise that kites are supposed to be up up up in the sky – which is definitely an excuse for another trip to the park with a proper kite some time!

  • Lisa 11/01/2015 at 4:54 pm

    Awwww thats a lovely post. Even though it didn’t fly it’s all about the fun making it. The fact that this little project took place over a few weeks is lovely.

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:06 pm

      thank you 🙂

  • Donna 11/01/2015 at 6:31 pm

    The kites are gorgeous and the girls look so happy! There is something about kites that is so magical and really does capture childhood x

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:05 pm

      They’re definitely a simple pleasure aren’t they 🙂

  • Becky | Spirited Puddle Jumper 12/01/2015 at 10:02 am

    This is fab and something that I can’t wait to do with my two! I was clearly a deprived child as I never flew a kite when I was little *sob* – I intend to make up for lost time, although I might not be making our one! x

    • Carie 12/01/2015 at 9:03 pm

      Oh that’s serious deprivation! I can remember trying to run around with a plastic kit kite that never got off the ground but my pride and joy was a Christmas present from my uncle – sadly lost into the sea before New Years 🙁

  • Eline @ Pasta & Patchwork 13/01/2015 at 11:15 am

    Those are very cute kites 🙂 I’m sure the fun was in the making and the trying and the fluttering. If I did this with M I’m sure he wouldn’t care about the non-flying either!

    • Carie 13/01/2015 at 11:08 pm

      They do look quite fun fluttering away – but one day I think I’ll have to try big kites on them and see how we go!

  • Hurrah For Gin 13/01/2015 at 9:18 pm

    You must be the most amazing mum Carie – i would love to have your crafting skills – it looks like a great little kite even if it struggled to take off 🙂 Have yet to introduce mine to kites properly – maybe this summer! x

    • Carie 13/01/2015 at 11:03 pm

      I think I have good ideas but they do sometimes fall down in the execution a bit!!

  • Katie @mummydaddyme 18/01/2015 at 12:57 am

    Oh this is so special Carie and such a childhood rite of passage- I remember doing the same with my own Dad. I love how you made it as well, so perfect. I have yet to do this with Mads and LL but your post has inspired me to start our own little project kite mission. x

    • Carie 18/01/2015 at 10:35 pm

      Oh you should – just don’t use giant lolly sticks!!