When my son, Zack (now 8 years old), was in preschool, he hated to draw, color and paint. I tried different methods to get him to embrace his artistic side – Finger paints! Glitter! A box of 120 Crayola crayons! – but nothing mattered. He’d draw/color/paint for all of 2 minutes, and then go right back to crashing his Hot Wheels through Lego towers. As a person who thrives in anything creative, I felt like a failure as a mother. I may or may not have cried about it in front of his teacher and pediatrician.
Moms, you know how it goes. It doesn’t take much for us to feel like we are failures, does it?
But as it turns out, I shouldn’t have been worried. About a year ago, Zack developed a concept that he calls a Zack Bot. It’s a little flying robot with long arms and a big Z on his body. He’s drawn Zack Bot books, puts Zack Bots on every scrap of paper that he can find, and creates “special edition” bots for his friends – there’s a Josh Bot and a Kat Bot, which each have different super powers.
So when I heard that there was a company – Budsies – that turned children’s artwork into plush, stuffed animals, I knew that I had to get one made for Zack. After looking at their website, I was really impressed with the way they had turned other kids’ drawings into stuffed animals, down to the last polka dot and crazy detail. Kids have some super imaginative visions, and all of the animals were really well executed.
Of course, I couldn’t order a Budsie for Zack and leave out Emma. She drew her ideal stuffed animal, which was kind of crazy. I was worried that it would be too much (or too abstract) for Budsies to replicate, but they assured me that it was just fine.
The process is that you order your Budsies through their website and then send in the artwork. If your child needs help coming up with an idea, Budsies offers templates that they can use as a jumping off point. To submit the artwork, you can take a picture of it and email or text it to the company or just upload it through their website. They let me know that they had received the artwork and that it looked great. In about a month, I got a shipping notification that our Budsies were on their way to us via USPS Priority Mail.
I didn’t tell the kids that their Budsies were on their way, since I know opening that box would be an amazing surprise for them. And it was!