Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Obsession – Cinco de Maya, Paper Flowers and an Identity Crisis

This started off as a simple craft post. But with me there is no such thing as a “simple craft.”

Today, I am working on some paper flowers for Maya’s upcoming fiesta “Cinco de Maya!” I’m a little obsessed with my children’s birthday parties. It’s an expensive obsession to say the least. And there’s usually one component of the birthday party that is all about me. Because why shouldn’t everything be at least a little bit about me?

At Maya’s first birthday luau, we made “Maya Tais.” At Lincoln’s first birthday carnival we had a popcorn machine. And this year, we’ve hired a full on taco cart. I’m beside myself with chubby-girl giddiness. Maybe I’ll set up a margarita speak-easy in my mother in law’s guest room.

Anyway, back to the paper flowers. So here’s a step by step for the Martha lovers. It’s really not hard. I was able to do a mediocre job.  Even through my identity crisis.

I bought some tissue paper from Michaels and Target. For smaller flowers, I stacked 10 sheets and cut them into thirds. Working with one third, I started on one end and fold it in and out like an accordion. Why the hell am I making these stupid flowers? Does Maya even care if they are beautiful and add a festive flair? I think she’s only concerned with the cupcakes and the bouncer.

Once I’ve done that, I took some florist wire and tied it around the center of the folded paper. Am I setting myself up for failure with this party? Will people call me out on the fact that I am one of the least “Mexican” Mexican people they know? They won’t ask me to speak Spanish, will they? The taco cart servers won’t speak in Spanish to me, will they? And if I don’t reply, will they laugh amongst themselves and say, “Just another Orange County gringa!” Is that how you spell “gringa”? I am screwed.

Then I rounded out each of the ends.  Why didn’t my mom teach me Spanish? I am wasting my time with these flowers when I should be learning the language of my ancestors? And what about the party? Is it accurately portraying my people’s culture? Larry said no to the burro rides but maybe it isn’t too late for the illegal fireworks. Hmmm…

Then I unfolded the accordion on either side…

…and carefully began pulling the sheets up one-by-one and fluffing them toward the center. Do that 10 times on each side and you come out with a beautiful flower. Who cares about flowers? I don’t even know who I am anymore! Am I a crafter? No! Am I a Mexican American? Debatable! Am I even a good mother? Probably not because my daughter has been repeating the word “pinche” for 20 minutes now and I haven’t noticed because I’ve been so obsessed with these pinche flowers.

If you want to make larger flowers to hang from the ceiling, just use the whole sheet of paper. If you want them to be beautiful, it’s best if you google “paper flowers” and find someone with skill to show you how it’s done.

But if you are into half-assing your way through art and culture, I’m your gal.

I guess in the end, I did learn a bit about myself. I may not always excel in execution but my heart is there. Like I said before, I usually avoid doing things that I can’t do well. So, do the math, half an ass and one big heart.

Just look at this devilish face. How can you resist making her party a little bit special?

¡Cuídate y pásalo bien!

Ps. Notice the above child is playing with scraps of paper. Scraps of paper. Or, as she calls them, “Fairy Dust.” And she still hasn’t touched the FPoST


Rachael said...

Hahahahaahaha these posts are too good! Fpost is the best!

Arlene said...

I laughed out loud M, you are too funny!