Even though I'm total crap at art, one thing I do enjoy doing is decorating G's lunch bags. If I put off making her lunch until morning, I don't have time to do much, but at the very least I always add a few flowers or stars around her name with a marker. When I make her lunch at night and have plenty of time, I use rubber stamps or stickers, or I attempt an actual picture. Tonight I cut a silhouette of a stalking leopard out of animal-print craft paper, glued it to the front of the bag, and then wrote her name and drew a little design around it in matching colors. ("That's just going above and beyond," said P when he caught me wielding the glue.)
I like doing lunch bag art because it's a way to let G know that even though I can't be there when she eats lunch, I'm still thinking of her. We've had many conversations about why I have to work, and how much I wish I could be with her instead, but it never seems to stop bothering her. I thought she would just grow up accepting that Mommy works and Daddy stays home, since it's all she's ever known, but it hasn't worked out that way. Maybe kids are genetically programmed to want their mothers, or maybe P is right and I nursed G longer than I should have. (He thinks it made her too attached to me, if that's even possible.) Either way, it's an ongoing issue, and probably will continue to be until she becomes a teenager and starts wanting me to go away.