Originally published in August of 2014 but republished because we’re making these same swim ribbon garlands today!
Our swim and dive season has been over now for two weeks, but we’ve done more post-season celebrating this year than ever before.
Usually, as soon as we wrap up the banquet, swim ribbons get shoved in a drawer, meet caps get put away, and trophies are given a home on the bedroom shelf.
And then we move quickly into part two of our summer: everything after swim and dive.
Swim and dive season comes and goes–just like that. Fast and furious and then bam. Over.
But this year, we decided to carry on the celebration a little longer by parading the awesome throughout our house.
Instead of piling up those ribbons and finding them a home on a shelf or in a drawer, we created a gorgeous swim ribbon garland.
It’s beautiful. And it’s simple, and it’s the story of the kids’ swim and dive season.
Here’s the skinny. . .
- Swim Ribbon Garland–What to do with Summer Swim Ribbons: I do need to clarify something.
The Swim Ribbon Garland was not created to brag.
It was not created to be competitive or bratty or nasty.Do you have summer swimmers? Here's what you need to do with their swim ribbons! #swimmomClick To Tweet
It was created to celebrate our kids’ accomplishments throughout the season and to remind them that hard work pays off.
And though it was super-simple to make, it turned out really, really pretty.
And it’s been the focus of many conversations that are totally worth having:
- Can you believe how much you improved over the season?
- Remember how nervous you were for your first IM but how proud you felt after finishing?
- This was the meet you surprised everyone–including you!–and came in first place!
- That was the longest afternoon ever, but you worked hard and got through it!
- Even though you disqualified in this event, you still shook everyone’s hand after the race.
- [Another swimmer friend] beat you in this race by less than a second; I know you were disappointed to lose, but you never once acted like a sore loser.
To make the swim ribbon garland, we simply grabbed a large needle and some embroidery thread (the kind we use to make friendship bracelets). The needle was large enough to fit the thread through but small enough to fit under the tiny top of the ribbons.
I asked Maddy, Owen, and Cora if they wanted their ribbons arranged in any particular way–by color, date, award, etc. Only Cora had an order preference, so she put hers in order, and I strung them from her direction.
Because Cora had significantly fewer ribbons this year compared to Maddy and Owen, we added some of her ribbons from last year. Not a big deal.
She knew where they were, she grabbed them, and we added them. Done and done.
Thinking about the possibilities for ‘sideline’ learning with the swim ribbon garland has me nearly nutty. We can talk about:
- total number of first, second, third, etc. awards;
- total number of awards;
- which person has more of each color;
- who has the most (and least) amount of (color, score, etc.);
- total time in each event;
- amount of time gained/ lost throughout season;
- so many ideas!
And really? That’s it. Just a quickie, fun, no-sew way to remind your child of how special he is.
What do YOU do with your kids’ ribbons? Let us know! Happy sewing and stringing those ribbons!
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