artsy fartsy,  Bad Mom,  Bug

The Many Adventures of Princess Mariposa

Somebody just lost her marker pen privileges

You know the face-painting Princess Mariposa thing has gone a little bit too far when your child starts drawing on her face with marker pen and then cries bloody murder when you force her to wash it off. I even showed her what she looked like in the mirror and she still insisted that she wanted her face left like that. Boy am I in trouble if she still likes this look when she’s old enough to get herself permanently inked. That thought just sent a shiver down my spine.

But Mom!

So I took the markers away and that went over like a lead balloon. She’s had it coming though. We’ve been going round and round about marker pens for weeks. I’ve always thought it was okay for her to have marker pens so young because she’s my kid. She’s an artist. She’s going to grow up drawing with all media and why should I hold back?

My mom never let me have marker pens until I was some ridiculous old age and I remember wanting them SO BAD!!! I think I even remember vowing to myself that when I was a parent (someday off in the distant future) I would let my kids draw with marker pens no matter how young they were…or something like that.

So I guess this is what I get: a kid who draws all over everything and herself. What did I expect? It’s not like I didn’t know it was coming. There was that one time that SuperChic drew eyelashes on herself with Sharpie. (CC! Where is that photo? I can’t find it anywhere!) If that isn’t a warning to me then I don’t know what is.

But really it’s not that bad. I do expect her to draw on herself and I will usually let it slide. It’s my own fault for not watching her more carefully while she is drawing. But I had to take the markers away this time because last time I told her if she drew on anything other than paper, I would. So she’s on marker pen restriction for a week.

Poor kid. Heh.

She was very very sad. I stood there feeling bad for her and decided that I didn’t really want the day to go as other days have gone with me snapping at her all day so I broke out my box of art supplies and decided to make masks with her. If she wants to be Princess Mariposa so bad why don’t we make a Princess Mariposa mask!?

making her green mask

It was a brilliant idea. Except for the part where Tuesday was a super busy day with appointments at the car dealership and a dental appointment for me. But whatever! Bring on the craft supplies!

Once the glue and feathers and sequins were out all thoughts of banished marker pens fluttered away like a happy green butterfly. In fact we both had so much fun we made several masks! I think if I hadn’t needed to rush off to the dealership to pick up my car that had been in for service, we could have made masks all day.

so we made a bunch of them

There’s no real how-to on these. I cut out symmetrical shapes from card stock and then cut eye holes in them. We taped a lollipop stick on the back as a handle since I didn’t have any elastic thread on hand. The decorating was pretty much a mess of Elmer’s glue and whatever we could find. I did use the glue gun at one point to attach the heavier items but that was purely because I have a glue gun handy (like right here in my kitchen drawer!) and I am not afraid to use it.

girls in masks

I think we will be doing this again. It took little to no preparation and kept us both occupied for at least an hour. I think this would be a great party craft. Maybe we’ll have to throw a masquerade ball one of these days.

Princess Mariposa mask

I have a feeling Princess Mariposa will be making her appearance quite often.


  • Jenni

    I have the perfect children’s book for you: Purple, Green and Yellow by Robert Munsch…check it out, read it, you’ll LOVE it!

  • Beth

    Love the masks! And love the cute top/dress you are wearing! What is it and where did you get it – please share.

    SAJ say: Here is where I out myself as not very chic or trendy. I bought that blouse three years ago at Sears.

  • gingermog

    Superb idea! The masks look very fancy. I remember when I was a kid I really, really, wanted one of those big boxes of Crayolas with luxurious colours such as silver and gold with a sharpener in the back. I never got one and had to be satisfied with a small box of 16 or 24 colours. I think I would probably buy my kids (if I had any) lots of crayons and markers in a multitude of colours too and I would always but always have glue. Funny how these things stick with you :)

  • Buckeroomama

    Beautiful masks!!

    We also have our share of face painting using not quite legit face paints. My son painted his face green because he wanted to be an alligator!

  • Marissa

    Those are great. I might have to make some today with Morgan.

    I did the same thing with marker pens, not just once, at least three times. Everybody told me it was a bad idea to give a 1,2 or 3 year old markers, but I didn’t get why. I have finally taken them away since she drew on the carpet with green.

  • Clover

    Super cool masks! I’m assuming you got all those awesome feathers at a craft store. I really need to broaden my horizons and go stock up on that sort of thing. Thanks for the mask idea!

    SAJ says: Yes, I bought the feathers at Michaels ages ago back when I was babysitting regularly. They’ve come in handy for many crafts.

  • Long Story Longer

    I’m curious how you organize your craft supplies. Do you have a system where you’re able to keep everything separate? You must do something clever that allows you to pull out feathers and glitter and misc. things at a moment’s notice!

  • Stephanie

    Teehee!! I love that you caught her frowny disappointed, “Don’t take away my markers!” face on camera.
    I’m not very good yet at remembering to have my camera at the ready for moments like that :-P

  • Kuky

    Well you got some funny pictures out of her little adventure and a fun awesome craft.

    I still let Isabelle loose with the markers and she draws on us. The trick is that she doesn’t draw on our faces. Bellies are free game. :)

  • beyond

    i’ve said it before and i’ll say it again: you are an awesome mom. and that is a very cute dress (top?) that you’re wearing.

  • carey

    what a great Mom you are. I would have snapped all day, but you found a way to harness that creativity!!

  • Molly

    I am sorry to say, but I felt happy when I saw the uncute unhappy marker face girl! I feel like your life is always so perfect (or looks so perfect), and this is a peek behind the curtain! But, you DO deserve the mommy of the year award for turning a bad bad moment into a fun and beautiful craft. Way to go!

  • Anna-b-bonkers

    They turned out so cute!
    I did masks like these with my kids craft class last fall only I used stiff foam and popsicle sticks. Other than that, pretty much the same. And we still play with them and add to them.
    Love it!

    Oh, and Ethan is the same way with markers. He colored himself so bad one time his bath water was green.

  • Anonymous

    Masks have been very popular at my house lately as well. Love when they’re sitting at the table creating.

    As for the markers—three words for you—-water soluble markers. ;-)

  • jo

    heehee – i just make sure all the ones we have are washable. Last time i was sick and home with the 4 yr old (and 2 babies), I collapsed exhausted on the lounge and let her draw all over me – kept her busy for quite a while and meant i didn’t have to do a thing. I think it started with ‘tattoos” and progressed to her drawing ‘X-rays’ all over my limbs…

  • Katie

    My son drew all over himself with markers.. He had brown arms, legs, hands, clothes… Luckily it was washable markers and he didn’t mind hoppin in the shower to wash up. The masks are really cute though. We’ll have to make some. :)

  • kiki

    What a great idea! I have an enormous tatoo on my back. Since becoming a mother, I have feared the ideas it has created for thier future. What a grande idea to show them how to express themselves without distroying there beautiful bodies.