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We Heart Art!

Posted May 08 2009 11:19pm
Sometimes as a busy mother of four young children, I'm in such a rush to get through the day in one piece. I rush the kids to get dressed in the morning, I rush to get them to eat breakfast, I rush them out the door to drop the big twins off at preschool....rush, rush, rush. I also tend to be a perfectionist. Unfortunately, through all this rushing and perfection, I sometimes miss out on special opportunities to see the beauty of the world as my children see it.

My children create art all the time, though sometimes I fail to see it as art. I'm talking about the beautiful chocolate pudding fingerpainting all over our kitchen sliding door.....tiny chocolate handprints everywhere. Some of the walls in our home are covered in permanent marker...smiley faces, tracings of hands and feet, and practicing writing their names. And of course there's the princess stickers all over most of my kitchen cabinets.

Sure, most people might not see that as art...I certainly didn't. But my kids did....they were creating something that their little minds had thought up. No big deal to them that it used to be my unmarked clean family room wall, or the perfect handprint-free sliding door or the clean, unmarked kitchen cabinets....they saw all these things as canvases that needed to be beautified.

And when I get look at it from their perspective, I find myself smiling. How could I yell and become angry when they run up to me with huge grins while saying, "Mommy, come see our fingerpainting"....as they drag me over to the sliding door?? My first instinct, as a perfectionist always in a hurry, is to groan and roll my eyes and start yelling "go get the Mr Eraser quick before all this dries". But for some reason, I've stopped doing that....I've come to learn that their childhood goes by quickly and I really need to appreciate their creativity and, of course, I want to encourage it. Yeah, it would've been nice if the "art" had occurred on a blank piece of paper but then that wouldn't have really been creative, right?

I have a suspicion that there are others like me out there in the world; Moms, Dads, aunts, uncles, or grandparents, who have budding little artists in their midst. Or, perhaps it is something else entirely, maybe you are the artist, creating and pursuing ideas of your own. Whatever the case may be, we want to the artwork in your life.

Together with Domestically Challenged and Three Bay B Chicks, I will be hosting a week long Art Appreciation Week called “We Heart Art.” The purpose? To promote art and being creative both with your kids and as individuals.

We Heart Art begins today and ends next Friday, May 15. During this time, all three sites will not only feature posts about how to get your creative juices flowing, but we will also be hosting a carnival (via Mr. Linky) which will allow you to feature your artwork and/or your kid’s creations.

So get your posts ready! We will have two categories for entries: one for kids, ages 0-16, and a second for adults, age 17 and older. The entries for the carnival can be anything creative. Some examples might include:

For kids: A drawing, painting, or sidewalk chalk creation, a video of themselves explaining a piece of artwork, singing, or playing a musical instrument, something they created in the kitchen, or an example of their writing, e.g., short story, poem, etc.
For adults: A drawing, painting, or a video, something you created on the computer or in the kitchen, an example of your writing, e.g., short story, poem, etc., a sample of your scrapbooking, or art that you created as a child.

Need more suggestions? Hop on over to these creative blogs. Ideas, tips, and insights are never in short supply: Tip Junkie, Today’s Creative Blog, Toddler Craft, and I Blame Mom.

Oh, and like any good carnival, we will be featuring tons of prizes, which we will reveal on Monday, May 11. Separate goodies will be awarded to both kids and adults.

We hope you will join us over the course of the coming week!
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