paper towel rolls, tape, and crayons = royalty

Creativity is hard to define. It may be as simple as “the way your brain thinks”. Though some of it is likely learned, due to environment. Or maybe it’s a little of both? Hmm, this is too philosophical for a Friday morning. What I do know is that if someone places a pile of random objects in front of creative-minded person, your brain and hands can’t help but start manipulating and creating it into something interesting. Are you the same way?

Growing up with creative siblings, a simple pumpkin carving night turned into a 3 hour session of creative concentration and “I’m in my zone” type of stuff. The same went for Gingerbread House night, making Valentines Sacks, and Lego building. I truly loved those times when my mom set out the makings of a project and we kids just went to town. Coloring books, clay molding, craft projects, cooking together, building shoe-box dioramas and science project displays….I loved it all. In jr. high I had this obsession with building photo collages by hand by cutting people’s heads off of one photo and placing them on another and putting someone else on their shoulder, etc. Pretty dumb but I had fun doing it.

(I really am going somewhere with this).

So now that I’m a parent and see bits of my kids’ talents emerging, my artistic body hopes they find joy in the same creative processes; that some of the genes have passed down to the next generation. Not that I’m pushing it or forcing things if they’re not into it. If Lucy ends up being a mathemetician like her dad, I know she’ll find joy in the art of creating math solutions and number manipulation. But for now, fingers crossed that they love to dip their hands in paint from time to time. I have a feeling that will be the case….

Last week we had an outing to the Austin Children’s Museum (a place we frequent often. It’s so cute).
The kids like playing in most of the rooms but some reason we’ve never spent much time in here (probably because Owen has been on the verge of a meltdown by this point and we’re all ready for lunch):
It’s a creative room filled with paper, cardboard boxes, popsicle sticks, glue, ribbon, tape, felt, blah blah blah. Basically, every time I peek in there, my body is aching to sit down and just move my hands around. The last time I tried to help the kids make something, they were both in tears (from being tired) because they couldn’t get the scissors to work right or I wasn’t using the proper paper color that Lucy had envisioned (the girl is specific), etc.
But a great thing happened this last time around….
On their own, both kids wandered in, sat down, and wanted to make stuff!
Really? Okay!
Of course I helped both of them but they instructed me along the way. We grabbed the paper towel rolls, poked popsicle sticks through the arms, Lucy and Owen let me know what type of hair they wanted and what sort of clothing was best, and then then Lucy colored the crowns with alternating green and gold (I sense a creative bone or two).
And after 30 minutes of pure fun for everyone, we walked away with the King and Queen.
It was Lucy’s idea when we got home to add the lace around her waist and a girly flower.
And Owen helped by putting the tape around his Obi-Wan robe.
Definitely my favorite trip to the museum (topped off with lunch at P. Terry’s burger stand).
The next day on her own, Lucy asked if she could use my old point and shoot camera and set up a photo shoot of their king and queen……with Buzz Lightyear (which some of you have too. Best purchase ever? He’s been wearing it for 5 days straight!)
It was so cute to watch her imitating the same stuff I do when taking pictures. Funny girl. I never thought it would be this fun to watch your kids being creative.
And you can guess what that face says. Yep, every time Lucy set up one of the dolls next to him, Owen whacked that thing down with his wings, and laughed hysterically (while a frustrated Lucy tried to instruct him and quickly set it all up again). Funny boy. He’s definitely the goofball of the family.
I look forward to seeing what their little talents become over the years. What are your kids’ creative passions? And at what age should you teach a kid to sew?
Happy Friday!

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