The kid's current obsession is origami.
And it's kinda contagious...
Origami isn't just folding cranes, sailboats and hats like I remember doing when I was a kid. In case you don't know, origami has blossomed over the past few decades into a very sophisticated craft & science. Not only are scientists using it to design spacecraft and robots, but some of the paper models origamists are folding for fun are astonishing and require hundreds of precise folds. Most are made from one sheet of paper and purists won't cut or glue anything.
What the origami obsession means for us is that every flat surface is covered and every nook and cranny of the house are covered with folded squares of colorful paper.
My best serving bowls have become origami storage vessels.
My car is littered with it.
And this is what I found when I cleaned out his lunch box this morning. (This amidst crusty smears of yogurt and the overwhelming odor of a rotting pear. I think you know what I mean, right?)
Countless hours are spent watching YouTube tutorials, going to monthly origami club meetings and folding anywhere and any time. In the car or a restaurant, candy wrappers and restaurant menus can be folded. And this past Saturday, we spent a full 9 hours at the Pacific Coast Origami Convention in Redondo Beach, CA.
The convention was fascinating. We took some classes, marveled at the amazing models on display there, bought some hard to find books and papers and met other enthusiasts who were happy to pause and teach us some new folds.
We met the famous origami master, Robert Lang who took the time to chat and sign his book, "Origami Insects".
We challenged ourselves in the "Cephalopod" class, making a squid and a cuttle fish. This was the most complex model we had ever folded and it took the two of us together to complete it. We almost gave up mid-way, but we got some help from the instructor and our neighbor and completed it!
And on the ride home, confidence boosted, I thought about the disappointingly sloppy egg roll wrapper origami cranes we had attempted a few weeks back and decided to give them another go.
The first time around, I did this with a friend and two 9 year old boys. Even though they were good folders, it takes a level of finesse, dexterity and patience that most 9 year olds don't have. And we were making them before dinner so the pressure was on. The kids gave up on the cranes pretty quickly. The adults stuck with it. But we ended up with a plate of sloppy, flour dusted saggy cranes. This time, I would do it on my own. No hurry. And armed with a few notes from the first time....
Admittedly, this is a RIDICULOUS thing to make. It's almost embarrassing to admit to doing it. But I never let that stop me. And I won't tell if you want to make them too.
This time, they came out lovely!
Click Here for the Recipe