James made and wore this alien mask yesterday afternoon. You guessed right-- it was inspired by one of the Star Wars movies. That is definitely a good thing about his newfound Star Wars obsession. . . it's fired up his imagination. Thomas the Tank Engine and Spiderman were fine companions, ones we all rather enjoyed, but the 'droids and 'bots and assorted aliens accompanying the SkyWalkers and Jedi Masters have really taken hold of our world.
What little kids don't draw or color, you ask? Well, James is one of those who can take it or leave it. When we still worked at the daycare (well, I worked, the kids attended), James would refuse to fingerpaint and he was quite likely to turn down half the coloring pictures that were offered, too. So, it was nice to see him so engrossed in making alien masks yesterday. I'm not one for "making" kids do any certain activity, but I have to admit the masks made me sigh with satisfaction.
Kate, on the other hand, has always liked to draw and color. It's just her thing. Being someone who only learned to roughly sketch ideas, I am so happy to see her learning at such an early age. Creativity always needs to find its physical outlet for expression. If you can find that particular outlet and start learning it, then there's a lot of satisfaction to be had as you progress. It's also perfectly fine with me if she doesn't discover the reasoning behind this but just keeps on drawing because it makes her happy!
Oh, yeah, Mommy loves a new package of markers, too! Attempting to draw outlines of my glass ideas helps me think about how I'll go about making them when I sit down to the torch. When I sculpt on the mandrel (like making a bead but bigger and closing off one end of the bead hole), I can move back and forth, adding glass here and there as the mood strikes me. That doesn't work when you sculpt off mandrel. The key to sculpting without the mandrel is to not keep moving back and forth because the shock of the heat from the flame will crack that glass that has already been melted and cool some. I know for lots of people the transition between these two styles poses no problem. For me, the transition is taking longer. . . the two styles are very different to me, and I had the on mandrel sculpting's movements ingrained fairly well.
Anyway, where was I going with that thought? Oh. The sketching an outline really helps me think about the steps I'll have to take to make something without needing to backtrack. Not to mention, I am the grownup who never outgrew the love of crayons, pens, markers, and notebooks. Back-to-school sales have always made me perk up, even after I was done with college and hadn't even thought about having kids. Some moms might dread the school supply list-- the store you are in at the time never seems to have just the right style of scissors for the little ones (was that pointed or blunt? red handles or green handles? and were those handles the plain old kind we had as kids or the fancy new more ergonomic ones?). Me? I could happily wander the school supply aisles for hours. The hardest part for me is only buying what is on the list!
Hmm, we just might have to get a new big box of crayons at the store today. . .there's nothing like carefully punching loose the perforation around the lid, tilting it back, and then silently, reverently, contemplating which color to use first. You finally lift one out of the carton, read its name, put it back, and check the names of a few more. What was once Midnight Blue some thirty years ago is likely to have a newer, more modern name. What once required mixing a peach and a yellow now comes in one Macaroni and Cheese color crayon. Ah, but what was once a thrill that lasted all afternoon, or at least until the papers had to be peeled back and the sharpened used, is still a thrill!