(Self) Discovery

I creep down stairs during nap time and carefully take out my brushes, my paper and water colors. I set up my station at the dining room table so I’m still in ear shot of my sleeping little one. When everything is set up the way I want, I go to work. It’s not quite new to me to be painting, but it definitely doesn’t come easy. I’m learning as I’m dipping the brush and swirling it through the paint on the palette. I’ve been practicing this fine art every day. The constant color makes me happy. The ideas spring to my head, one after the other. Some days it’s hard to keep up with them. The dining room table is littered with bits of paper covered in watercolor flowers and sketches. These nap time painting sessions are becoming something I look forward to every day. Something I yearn for when I wake up in the morning. I tell Ellie that I paint too. These are Mama’s brushes. This is Mama’s palette. Ellie wants to paint and we do so at her little table. I see her move her hands this way and that in the paint, swirling and mixing the colors together. She looks up at me and asks for more paint. She points to the color she would like and where on the paper she would like it. I scoop out a glob of orange finger paint and she goes back to her work. I look over at my watercolors looking lonely on the table. My hands itch to hold the brushes. To dip them into the water to collect the right amount of moisture for the right amount of paint. I get excited for the days Ellie and I can paint side by side. Brushes at the ready, making magic with color. I’m thinking that this is what it feels like to discover something about yourself. Something new and exciting.
Two ladies came by the other day and before they left they asked me “Are you an artist?” Those words caught me off guard. I wanted to say Yes! Yes I am! I wanted to proclaim it and claim it as my own. Instead I said, “I’d like to be one.”

*joining in with Write Alm’s Prompt-A-Day.

Getting Creative

watercolor beginnings

thank you card

cards galore

The new year has brought a sense of renewal and redefinition for me. I’m wanting to try things out and get more creative. I’m wanting to make more and buy less, I’m wanting to create and craft. This weekend I started a journal. I used to keep journals for years and then I started scrap booking in high school and my journaling ended up part of the scrap books. And of course like many things, as I got older I just stopped journaling as much until it got thrown completely by the wayside. This blog is a journal of sorts, I guess you could say, but I missed putting pen to paper. I stumbled upon this amazing lady’s blog a couple of days ago and fell in love with her art and her ways of journaling. She’s inspired me to start ¬†journaling again as well as practice adding some extra creative elements to the mix like stamping and watercolors (things I’ve dappled in here and there but never really practiced). I stopped by the arts and crafts store this weekend and picked up a few things and went to work in my little bursts of free time (during Ellie’s nap-time, while Jeff played or read to Ellie or while Ellie was engrossed in an activity, which is happening more and more these days). I worked on my new journal and I made Thank you cards with ink and watercolors. And not only was it was so much fun but the cards turned out lovely. It feels really good being creative. I’m learning new ways to express myself and I’m discovering that fine art of practice. Practicing a new skill, especially a creative one is always good for the heart and soul.

An Experience with Art

Okay, so I love art. I love children’s art. I’ve been waiting so very long to introduce Ellie to painting and making art and hoping beyond hoping she would enjoy¬†making art. I didn’t have to wait any longer. Yesterday I picked up some finger paint at a local school supply store and thought she might be ready. This morning I set her up at her table, put her in an apron that was ten times too large for her (she didn’t seem to mind after she watched me put on my, yes that’s right, Wizard of Oz apron), and we got to painting. It was as if she had always been finger painting. She went right to work, smearing her hands across the paper, trying out different strokes with her fingers and really staying focused on the task at hand. She seemed to thoroughly enjoy her first experience with painting. And that makes this Mama very happy. There will be more art in this home… that I am sure of!

“The Art of mothering is to teach the art of living to children.” – Elaine Heffner

first art

a budding artist

working

smearing

top view hand

side view

the process

the product

*thanks to Jeff for taking many of these photos today, helping me to document the fun stuff!