I was sent this review copy of Martha Stewart's Favorite Crafts for Kids: 175 Projects for Kids of All Ages to Create, Build, Design, Explore, and Share a couple weeks ago and it has been close at my side since then. I have all the martha Kids magazines (RIP) and all the Baby magazines (RIP) and pretty much all of the MSL magazines stored away in my bookshelves. This pulls projects from all those issues, plus (I was told when I e-mailed them to ask) there is some new content as well. Even if there weren't, seeing all these craft projects in one source is pretty thrilling. I have since loaned it to Grammie, who is loving it as well.
There are so many great project ideas on Pinterest, but nothing beats a book or magazine for me. The girls love looking at this book for project ideas and it's off the computer. They can carry it around, put it on the craft table, take it to bed, take it outside—it's making me appreciate physical sources for us all even more now that they are older.
I feel good about saving all my magazines, books, everyday foods, etc, over the years. It was such a drag to move them so many times since college, but I'm so glad I kept what I did. The girls look at them all the time. I remember how much my parents' books, magazines, and albums lying around had an influence on me growing up. I wonder about all the e-reader books and digital music we have in a clould—if that's all we had, how would kids browse a collection in their home? There is nothing to look at. No book covers or album covers lying around. I'm not anti-digital for media. I use my kindle all the time, but I do think about this a lot. I have slowly been reading more e-books and getting more music online over the last few years have realized while it's nice to have less stuff in the house, it sort of removes it all from the rest of the family. Which is fine— I don't need or want to share everything. I'm not saying I need to do it differently, it's just something I think about and try to make a conscious decision about it when I buy a real item versus a digital one.