Creativity from Necessity - or - The Backpack Delimma

Just had to add this little guy.

Already, we are almost done with February, school will be out in just a few months! I have no idea where the time went but it has been a whirlwind of school, work, and maintaining. Creativity still has not been at the forefront of my days, however, I give pause out of necessity on nights like last night to be creative due to necessity.

You would think that elementary children would not need sturdy backpacks. After all, they carry lots of worksheets, silly little reading books, and lunch bags. Oh, not so with my little one. Her personal reading books are shoved into the canvas bags at the point of exploding. Her binder is large and stuffed, and I am certain that textbooks are no less than 5# and a third her body size! So with that in mind, the cute little Roxy backpack that I hoped would last her at least two years has not made it to the end of this second semester. I knew I was in trouble when I noticed she was carrying it like a baby up our driveway, wrapped in her hoodie to keep things from scattering.

The budget for another backpack was not available this weekend, at least I had no intention of spending one more dime on cheaply made imitation bookbags that cannot handle books the like of which little "J" carries. I will eventually go to L.L.Bean and order one of their beastly backpacks that they actually guarantee...but not til next year. Last night we rummaged through the hand-me-downs and discovered that aside from a very baby pink, rainbow strapped backpack the rest of the choices were from big brother or from promos that dad brought home. No rising middle-schooler wants baby pink nor cast-offs from brother so she settled on a bright red and black promo bag that was brand new. She sadly spat out the words, "Fine! I'll take the Georgia colored backpack" then hung her head as she climbed the stairs to bed. (None of us like football that much and adding insult to injury would be to wear Georgia colors. If we had to choose college ball, Tennessee Vols win out, even with that awful orange.)

She was trying to be a good sport and even if I had ordered the new backpack as soon as the other exploded, she would still have to settle for something until it arrived. Nope, that would not do.

So I sat and stared at the very functional but brutally offensive bag and contemplated the color red. Not a favorite color of anyone in my home. Red, the color of Georgia...ok, yeah, move on. It took me 20 minutes just to get past that issue. Red, the color of blood...ew, gross. Red, the color of hearts and love...getting closer but too frou frou for my little one. Red, the color of fire....fire for a girl? The girl on fire, Katniss! The Hunger Games Trilogy are her favorite books with anticipation of the coming movie! Perfect!

And now I have my idea at 11pm and I run with it.

This involved a rummage through the basement to find an old duffel bag to cut up, paints, hot glue gun, Sharpies, embroidery floss and needle, along with artistic inclination. I decided on a giant circle to cover the company logo that was being represented then painted the mockingjay emblem from the book. It turned out well. The hardest part was getting the needle and floss to go through the thick canvas.
Needless to say, little "J" was thrilled when she went to begrudgingly load that backpack for school and saw my little bit of inspiration. She chattered about it the whole rest of the morning while she got dressed for school. She even wanted her hair braided like Katniss for the day. Yes, sometimes creativity springs from necessity and yes, it was necessary to change up the bag to make my little one smile.