making art with my kids

When Margot was born, there were certain things I couldn’t wait for. I mean I loved the whole wee baby thing but I daydreamed about her toddling around the garden with me and I couldn’t wait to witness her uninhibited self-expression.

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I love it: Margot visits her art table regularly throughout the day.
We lose that. I am not sure when but, eventually, we become self-conscious about making art. We start to compare our abilities to others, we decide we aren’t “good” at some things. We stop painting purple amoebas and calling it grass. We start making vertical green lines at the bottom of the page because that’s what grass looks like.

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Art is really important in our home. We prioritize making it, looking at it and purchasing it. So, Andy and I really wanted our kids to have a dedicated creative space where they could have unguided art making experiences whenever they wanted. I don’t want to be a freaky parent all crazy obsessed with my kids being creative geniuses, I just want my kids to have fun exploring art (although, honestly, I do swell at how Margot talks about the museum and how she recognizes the subtleties of different tones and knows how to mix her own black…).

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The greatest art apron of all time: the tie and neck loop are all one piece and adjusts with one hand to fit any sized kid
So in the last three years, I have learned a lot about making art with kids and how to encourage without restricting, how to create space for expression. I have gathered my information from my colleagues at the museum and through trial and error. I rarely do ‘how-tos’ on my blog but I get asked about our approach quite a bit so today I am sharing some of what works for my family.
:: an art area ::
Having a designated art spot eliminates the time and effort of lugging out supplies, cleaning up and putting away. It’s all always available whenever a mood strikes and since we created this space, the mood strikes many times a day. For more info about how we created this space, click here.
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Buckets are out of reach for smallest kids and shelf is out of reach for small kids (or so I thought).
:: new supplies ::

Sure we always have a little supply of pencils and crayons but new tools generate new enthusiasm. Many of our favorites come from Walking Stick Toys and I am happy this cool, environmentally-friendly, family-owned, Missoula-based business is a new sponsor!

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eco paint: it comes as a powder and Margot loves to mix it herself.
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Also, it’s handmade with flour, cornstarch, seaweed, natural and organic fruit, plant and vegetable extracts from beets, spinach, paprika, carrots, purple sweet potato, red cabbage, blueberries and tomatoes. In other words, when Ruby inevitably puts it in her mouth, it’s totally ok. 

A lot of the time I just dig through what we’ve got. ‘New stuff’ doesn’t necessarily have to mean brand new, purchased at the store. And while I don’t might investing in high quality art supplies, I do not like buying craft store tsotchkes that end up in the trash. Ball point pens, dad’s carpenter pencils, shaving cream with food coloring, fabric scraps, dried grass. It more about re-purposing something, finding new use. In the summer we take our paint outside and paint rocks (easy to do with paint made from food). Mudworks is a fabulous book with more than 100 recipes for making clay, dough and sculpting material. 

Speaking of sculpting material, play dough is a favorite in our home. It has endless possibilities for cramming into containers, shaping, cutting, stacking, stabbing. We just open up the kitchen utensil drawer and have at it. Play dough is never boring.

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Best Kid Gift of All Time: Last year Margot received a birthday gift of homemade play dough and this play kitchen utensil set. Play dough is a snap to make. It lasts way, way longer than the store bought stuff and eliminates all that packaging. Best play dough recipe here.
:: blank paper ::


I won a Hello Kitty coloring contest when I was six and got to have BREAKFAST WITH HELLO KITTY. I loved coloring books just as much as the next kid…but…blank paper allows for so much more. Kids don’t draw a sun like a circle and lines coming out the sides until they are told or shown that is what it is supposed to look like. I want to avoid this kind of imitation. I want to see how Margot sees the sun.


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A side note: I am becoming increasingly agitated at all the pre-fabricated kid toys out there. Everything is a kit. It’s hard to find a box of legos, you have to buy a particular truck and then build it just like the instructions tell you to. Remember legos and making up your own truck never to be duplicated? 

Anyway, we buy rolls of newsprint or banner paper and keep a piece always attached to the table. This also reduces waste because one piece is added to for many days. When it’s done, it’s wrapping paper.

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Ah! Margot is so teeny here!


When on the go we love scrap paper from recycling and blank books.

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:: create together ::

Margot loves to do what I do. Whether it’s weeding, washing dishes, applying lipstick or skiing. 

I bristle a bit when people declare that they don’t have a creative bone in their body or they can’t even draw a straight line. Because I just don’t believe it and, also, little spongey kids may start to wonder the same thing about themselves…it’s like all things with parenting (I have to remind myself daily), modeling is the best way to teach. You know, like, I should say thank you if I want my kid to say thank you. Same goes with art-making. When I sit and create, push myself alongside my kid. It’s amazing what happens for both of us.


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:: observe, ask questions ::

More than anything, Margot just wants me to notice what she’s doing. She wants me to pay attention. Sometimes I don’t need to say a thing. I try to be specific when I tell Margot what I like about her work. Instead of good job cutting! I will say I really like that shape right there. It looks like a flamingo to me. It encourages her to start looking more at art, both at her own and others. 



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We LOVE these glass crayons. They are vibrant and fun and wipe off with a wet rag.


What do you see? is pretty much the only question I ask Margot when we look at art. It leaves a lot of room for many good answers. And, now, she asks me that question. We’ll be in a gallery looking at a sculpture and she’ll say, mama, what do you see? And I tell her and then she says, Oh, well, I see…it’s something.


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Walking Stick Toys has a special deal for you: 20% off your purchase! Use coupon code ‘DIGCHICK’ at checkout. Baby toys, art supplies, books, dress up, instruments, games…there’s something for every kid on your holiday list. Thank you, Walking Stick Toys!

47 Responses to making art with my kids

  1. Wendy says:

    Such great advice! And I love your art area. Our area (which I’m dying to redo) is in the basement and doesn’t have any of the beautiful light that yours does.

  2. Michele says:

    Thank you for this. My girls are 15 and 28 months and I’m looking for new ways to bring art into our lives. We color and paint but they are young so I’ve been hesitant about trying a lot of other things. I like the idea of having a space for it. duh. I have a reading corner, which they love, so why not an art corner. I think making an effort to create something with them every day, no matter how small, could go a long long way.

  3. Marti says:

    When I found your blog a while back I was looking through some of the old post and I thought your idea of the art table w/ the curtain rod hanging above it was BRILLIANT! So I totally did that in my craft room once we got settled into our new house…it was one of the things that I looked forward too the most.

    Also, my husband and I were just saying on Saturday when looking for legos for Ivy that you can’t buy “just” legos anymore…it’s sad to me.

  4. Jeanne says:

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! This information is soooo not out there! I never wanted my kids art to be sponsored by Crayola and have their little hands or minds be limited in anyway. I have a 2.5, a 1.5 year old and one due in January and I struggle with how to incorporated art or being creative into their lives all the time. We do not have a dedicated area for art yet and now I am wonder why the heck not! I never thought about getting supplies that would be harmless if ingested! DUH! I KNOW that they would love to have the access to supplies all day long. Especially when I need to make a big deal about lugging out the supplies and then doing clean up. What message is that sending to them? S anyway, thanks yet again for inspiring me and my kids!

    So, thank you for shining a light on what you do with your creative kids! And not to mention so GREAT links to cool supplies!

  5. RMAinMD says:

    ,,,”monkey see, monkey do”,,,margot and ruby are going places,,,(smile)

  6. Lillian says:

    Word- SO with you on the pre-fab toys!! Can I please tell you how hard it is to find just a set of decent-sized plain wooden blocks right now?? The only sets I can find are Melissa and Doug(thankfully, thought they’re smaller than I wanted) and insanely expensive Haba and Plan that I WANT to justify spending the money on, but just can’t. None of the stores that I can walk into that “sell” toys sell plain blocks – which made me decide that I didn’t want to buy anything from then anyway;) Great, great post!

  7. We have a dedicated art area as well and I’ve had them do art that are just spontaneous and uninstructed and then combine that with crafts where we make something specific with some instruction. Mix the two up; so to speak! My kids are now four years old, so wanted to introduce new mediums and tools that I know are not explored at school yet!

  8. FinnyKnits says:

    I was listening to a speaker on developmental studies the other day and something he said stuck with me: Babies start imitating the world around them after they’ve been alive for only 45 minutes.

    And then they continue imitating the world around them as they learn to put it all into context.

    He used it as reasoning for handling household disputes (if you argue in front of your kids, also resolve the problem in front of them) and so on, but I like this application better.

    You’re doing right by those girls, mama – if more people looked at the world based on what they “saw” rather than what they were “told to see”, it’d be a better and more accepting place.

    Also, I like these glass crayons. I wish I had those as a kid. Instead I just used my mom’s lipstick and she didn’t find it as charming.

  9. Art always saves the day around here. It decompresses all of us at once. It was easier before Taz entered the scene, but we’re figuring it out…

  10. joan says:

    so funny to see Margot Bea so little at the art table. Now Ruby looks just a itty bitty. MB is so intent on her art projects and to see her in the museum picture I can see those wheels turning. Thanks for the sweet informative post and I agree everyone can draw a straight line even isf its a bit crooked.

  11. hayley j says:

    ok, so i am totally at that “i can’t wait to have kids one day and make art with them…blah blah blah. so i feel ya on that. and i smiled the entire time reading this post! i love art, and more importantly i love teaching art. when i was a preschool teacher, there were 2 times in 3 years that i actually teared up. the last day of work before i moved to germany. and teh friday of ‘art week’, when a child was showing her mom the displayed work and said, “see mama, that’s mine. it’s called ‘pointltism’ like seuratthedot!”
    literally, teared up. YOU ROCK! and so do margot’s masterpieces!

  12. Gramomster says:

    Love this post. Wish my Connor made more use of his art stuff. He’s a builder. A friend found him a bag of colored wooden blocks, and he does have a pound of legos that mostly aren’t from kits. He does lots and lots and lots of stuff with the blocks and legos and incorporates them together.

    You totally hit on one of my pet peeves though, which is the pre-fab kit thing. EVERYTHING is a kit!! Whether it’s ‘learn to crochet!’ or ‘make friendship bracelets!!’ or lego Batman or Toy Story 3. Ack. Imagination anyone? Self-directed discovery and creation? Ugh.

  13. jen says:

    love this. i’m trying to be better. your responses are perfect thank you for including them …
    also … have you ever seen the kid’s book – willow –
    http://www.willowlovesart.com/willow/
    my girls LOVE it.

  14. Minnesotagal says:

    I’m so inspired by this post!! I love the paints! Just ordered some for my 10 1/2 mo old. Everything goes in his mouth these days so to see your wee Ruby making art with edible paints is just brilliant! And an art table for Christmas is just the thing. Thank you for all the creative ideas!

  15. Mammamusing says:

    What a beautiful art space for your little ones to create their masterpieces.

    I’m inspired to go out and buy my little girl Amelie some paints so she too can unleash her creative side.

    Lovely post.

  16. Thanks for this post! Oh I love the towel bar with the little pails! We are so in need of a designated art area, instead of me schlepping everything out to the kitchen table when she needs it… which is multiple times a day. In fact it’s been a repeat topic of conversation for me and my best friend the past couple of months. Brainstorming how to designate an area for our 3, 4, 5 year old’s to go to any time they want…but somehow keep our 1 and 2 year old’s from tearing it apart. And somehow incorporating this into our living area…no playrooms.

    I was a teacher before I had my girls…I was always using up the rolls of butcher paper in my school for my classes. I think I need a roll for here at home to spread across my table…I love the sparkle in a kid’s eye when they see that vast blank canvas in front of them as opposed to a small piece of paper.

    I can’t wait to take my girls to the Art Institute (Chicago) this winter. My parents took me there all of the time as a kid and I can’t believe I’m taking my own kids now. I can’t wait to ask my 3 year old what she sees when she looks at American Gothic in person for the first time :D

    Going to check out that paint…I’d love for my 15 mo old to be able to paint with big sis and it be safe when she tastes the brush :)

  17. jennywren says:

    Thanks for posting this-you’re an inspiration.

    I recently started exploring my artistic side and was thinking that maybe I wasn’t good enough to do so. Thanks for proving me wrong!

  18. Loving that 3rd photo…with the 2 girls at creative play….just their hands in sight…awesome Nici!

    THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! We have a lonely corner of our dining room which we started to make into our toddler daughter’s art area…it has the table, chairs & storage. But…me being the organise freak have been keeping all the art n craft ‘stuff’ packed neatly away in labeled boxes in the cupboard of the spare room….hmmm….you’ve inspired me to get it all out & rearrange/redecorate the art corner to better use the space the potential of it’s use :)
    Thanks again, I needed that little push of inspiration to organise it better :)
    xo

  19. brookie says:

    It’s my first time on your blog and your topic is close to my heart. My friends come over and see all the art supplies and the first thing they say is “that looks fun but what a mess”. But it’s so worth it. The Shorties have grown up soaking in art, they don’t trash the place when they create. (ok – there is glitter all over right now for some reason). For every friends kids second birthday from now on they get an art kit. With sharpies – maybe that’s too far

  20. Muffin Cake says:

    LOVE it! My daughter and son have a table all their own too, and we skip fancy store-bought stuff in favor of the most-treasured art of the moment scotch-taped to the pantry door, closet door, windows…wherever. I love encouraging creativity and seeing how my kids interpret the world!

    (PS: Not sure if it’s my computer or your blog, but the ride side of your text was cut off in a few places. Just an FYI in case it’s not only me seeing it.)

  21. Lea says:

    great post! one question…i’m def. not a clean freak or toy/art supply micro manager but how to you keeps margot from coloring say the walls, furniture, etc or breaking supplies?

    my little 2 yo is way into creating but i’ve had many moments where i step away and find he’s drawn on the couch or the carpet or his 2mo sister’s face…

    also he has broken some of his crayons etc in toddler frustration.

    any tips would help a mama out :)

  22. Yay for all the annoyance with those kits! Seriously. After I wrote this I thought of a bunch of other examples like when I was recently in a craft store looking for shrinky dink paper and all they had was pre-drawn images you could color in.

    Lea:

    We talk a lot about where drawing is ok. Margot has colored on the wall and chairs a few times and I tell her it bums me out and ask her to help me clean it up. A designated space is helpful, as is making art with her. One idea I had is to put a piece of oil cloth on the wall as a ‘back splash’…hasn’t seemed necessary for us but I think it would look great.

    Margot does break pencils and crayons. I just tell her what that means: she has broken pencils and crayons. If she’s cool with it so am I. However, most of the time when I explain her choice and tell her these are all the crayon’s we’ve got, she settles a bit.

  23. Little Mumma says:

    I am so on the same page as you about childrens art. I also have an art room set up for my children and she has free reigh and creativity..theres no telling her that a tree should be green or that a car needs wheels.
    I am an early childhood educator and am completly inspired by the Reggio Emillia philosophy – if you haveb’t heard of it have a google as I’m sure a lot of it would ring true for yourself. It really is all about the process and not the final product.
    Thankyou so much for sharing your wonderful photos – you must be one very proud Mum xxx

  24. Sarah says:

    Nici, I love this post. I’m not craftastic and was inspired by Kelle’s post, nor art talented and am inspired by this post. i need to be a better model as a parent. I went to michael’s to try to do something for place settings at our table Thursday, and even asked the clerk if what I thought would work, and it didn’t (the paint pen didn’t show up on the felt acorn). Anyway, I appreciate the nudge and am inspired. I’ve never thought about the blank paper thing!! Happy thanksgiving:)

  25. Sarah says:

    I mean we use blank paper, but haven’t thought of the power in it.

  26. On the “kit” comment, try Duplos, they are the little kid version of Legos and they don’t come in kits per say, they are more themed, I suppose. But my Margot loves to put them together and her 14 mo. sis loves to take them apart.

  27. pakosta says:

    what a beautiful post!
    I have 2 little girls and since they were 6 months old I have been letting them create art! we started out with yogurt or pudding on the high chair tray.
    I am not an artist, but I always wished I could be!
    My girls still love art, but I see my almost 11 year old not wanting to do it lately because she says she isn’t any good. and my 9 year old still wants to. so somewhere between 9-11 maybe is when they lose that naturalness, which is really hard to see! and I never thought it would happen to my girl because of how much we have done art, every day since they were literally babies!
    she still makes things though, like decorating boxes for her american girl dolls and making them books and such and writing stories!
    I just LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog!
    tara

  28. Nici,
    This is so much more than just a “how-to” post! You bring up such a wonderful and important point about creativity and how we begin to “lose” our ability to create!

    I feel the same way, with music! So, therefore, modeling and playing music, and CREATING music, without specific notes attached (improv) with my kids is so important…but so FUN too!

    We love art too. My kids still enjoy painting. I buy blank canvases for seasons and switch them up on my living room walls after the kids paint whatever they want. It is much cheaper, and I love to display their creations.

    My favorite one, from when Riley was 4 years old, was “Spotted cow on a Sunny day”. He had 2 suns….different colors, and THAT is what you are talking about:)

    Happy Thanksgiving, Nici!
    Jen

  29. Ellie says:

    Thank you, Nici, for an inspiring post. When I was growing up behind the Iron Curtain, knowing how to draw a sun with a circle and lines coming out of it was considered a rite of passage; my parents were very concerned that at age three my son didn’t know how to do it, and he didn’t because we couldn’t care less.
    And yes, I am with you on the legos, and you can still buy generic pieces:
    http://www.amazon.com/LEGO-Ultimate-Building-Set-Pieces/dp/B000NO9GT4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1290526391&sr=8-1
    A local toy store should have them…most stores around here do. My husband is manic about legos and still refuses to buy “kits” and insists on our son only using the generic ones. They work beautifully–we make new stuff every single day.

  30. Margaret says:

    Loved this post. When my youngest was in kindergarten a couple moms came up with the idea of having each child recreate a section of a famous painting from a well known artist such as Monet. This was then puzzle pieced together and mounted so that it could be auctioned off at the grade school auction. Not my favorite idea, but I guess it was a way to familiarize the little ones with art. What really threw me over the edge was when they then came around to the children’s desks and spent quite a bit of time correcting each piece with the intent of making it look as much like the original as they could….and all while the little ones were still in the room and could observe. The finished piece did look very similar to the ‘original’ but there was absolutely no kindergarten-aged interpretation or creativity left. They were looking for ‘perfect’ not ‘express yourself’. Afterward I spent some time trying to figure out how to explain this to my son. I wanted him to understand that there is no such thing as perfect when he is being creative….and that although it is wonderful to learn about art, art history and other artists…it is best to be inspired by others and not at all necessary or preferable to copy them!

  31. KWQR says:

    Love this… thanks for the ideas & inspiration. Our playroom has an art corner… unfortunately I can’t yet leave supplies within reach since my monkeys are more into throwing things than using them. I try to do some kind of loosely supervised art with them every day… one of their latest faves is stamping (the aftermath of which ended up being a blog post: http://kwqr.blogspot.com/2010/11/some-days.html)
    But you’re right… freedom to create is such an important thing to provide… well worth an occasional mess. We were lucky enough to inherit a ton of leggos, old-school no-kit kind of leggos. Seeing what they come up with is such a treat. My youngest is really into tinkertoys right now too… yesterday he made a fabulous “moose” who accompanied us on all of our errands about town.

    Also loved your MamaDigs this week… before my first son was born I only used the computer for work & movietimes… didn’t even know what a blog was! Now it is such an important resource for support & info, creative outlet & much-needed entertainment. A community that can be accessed 24/7… works well with mama-hours!
    Wishing miss Rubycakes a very happy birthday!!
    xo
    Kate

  32. Anonymous says:

    FYI for shrinky dinks you can you the clear plastic clamshell containers that you get from restaurants. We were at an Earth Day festival a couple years ago and they used sharpies to draw on the plastic and then shrunk them in a toaster oven in a few minutes. Good use for them since you can’t recycle them anyway.

  33. Jennifer says:

    What a great post. I am all about open-ended crafts, arts, and even toys. I too am frustrated about the directed art/crafts/prepackaged stuff. What ever happened to keeping it simple, stupid? You do want our future leaders to think outside the box, right? Hello?!?

    One of my friend’s son’s (4.5 this summer) was sad when we finished tie dying b/c he thought that he did it wrong. He is not used to the fact that every piece is unique. I felt for him even after hugging him and talking about it for 1/2 hour.

    I agree with you about the legos being sold only in sets, but we have a local Lego store and are planning to take whatever duplos we purchase and put them into a hand-made bag so that Alex doesn’t get the ideal that you can only build what they show…And then they will be dumped into the container with the others.

    We have rolls of paper that we tape across our coffee table/chest and we have a framed area in the kitchen that is all about chalk painting. The crayons and chalk are always there for the taking. I definitely want to check out the links and even check out the paints that you use. And like you, I upcycle Alex’s watercolors into handmade cards. I definitely need to use the bigger pieces for wrap. Awesome.

    I really love the window crayons. Possible stocking stuffer.

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    -Jennifer from Annapolis

  34. Minnesotagal says:

    FYI for when you’re in MN the next time: the Mall of America (which I normally avoid like the plague) has a Lego store there sells them in bulk by weight.

  35. Jennifer says:

    Ok, going back to read everyone’s lovely comments about the art post. Lillian – check out blocks on Etsy. Much nicer than the M&D ones and larger too. I’ve also had great luck finding wood toys at Tuesday Morning; but that’s one of those places that you have to visit frequently.

  36. Sam says:

    Thanks for reminding me to get out the paints and let the girls be creative! It sure is a great way to spend a cold winter day.

  37. Meredith says:

    check out the book “the dot” by Peter Reynolds. Simple lovely children’s book about “I can’t even draw a straight line”. It was the first book that both my eldest learned to read. Collections of lego peices (like thousands of them) can be found on craig’s list, but be warned, if you have a 15 month old, they will become hazards EVERYWHERE in your house.

  38. Hillary says:

    This is great! I love the personal art space. All laid out and ready for the creative juices to run. As a kid I remember our personal ‘creative nook’ as we called it. I think back to it, and it was an explosion of colour, glitter, paints, and markers, but the nook is one of my fondest memories. I am not artistic in any way shape or form, but I am not afraid of being creative–thanks to the nook. Thanks for bringing back so many memories for me :)

  39. Gramomster says:

    @ LIttle Mumma
    My grandson is in a Reggio preschool, and when he first started, and 2 and a half, he was so enamored of paint, and so interested in painting EVERYTHING they actually built a larger cardboard sculpture thing just for him. They had put together this thing of scraps of cardboard, and let the children explore it, and he showed so much interest that his teachers put together a large appliance box, with one side cut out, and created some 3D elements on the inside of the box, and then would let him strip to his diaper and paint with brushes, his hands, his feet, his whole body if he so chose. I am so ridiculously in love with his school. One teacher, still his favorite person perhaps in the world (right after Gramma) let him paint her ENTIRE arm, being primarily interested in how he chose to approach it. She took her shoes and socks off too, and painted on a paper roll with him. This in February in Michigan. Wonderful philosophy, wonderful people.

    And this post really got me thinking again about the plethora of crap toys that Connor has that have somehow managed to take over the entire area in which I envisioned art. He has an easel that always has crayons in the tray, and there is usually playdough about as well. I really need to purge, and make the whole space less chaotic and more inviting for him.

    I did this week find some lovely Sharpie drawing on the dining room table and floor (both wood, and I did get it off amazingly enough), and there are crayon spirals on both toilet lids. I’m still finding bits of acrylic paint from a very interesting and assisted body painting party Connor’s 20 year old mother had while we and he were in, oddly enough, Missoula over the summer. She’s quite the out-of-the-box creative chick herself.

    And @ Little Lessons…
    Thank you for the reminder about music. Our house is so choppy, and often all I hear from another room is ‘banging’, and when I call to him to see what’s up, he replies, “I’m making music, Gramma!” I need to remember to HEAR the music, instead of the banging.

  40. Jennifer says:

    Going to duck my head for what I am about to say! No intention to take a smack at elementary school teachers, or preschool teachers. They get in there and give them coloring pages, tell them to color in the lines. Make lolly pop trees, etc…. My art professors would tell us he was deprograming us from what our art teachers/teachers told us what to do.

    My daughter was very lucky in elementary school, she had the best art teacher. She let them explore and do their own thing. They evolved beautifully!

    Art is life!

    :o)

  41. Kelle says:

    Been reading! Promise…just haven’t stopped to comment, shame! I’ve loved Margot’s art spot since you first posted it, and loved seeing it in person and watching MY girl make art there too. Love your art-lovin’ heart. And love that Andy joins you for a full-force art-lovin’ family. SKYPE! SKYPE! SKYPE!! I’ll be aproned and flour-covered most of the day, but I’ll leave the pies for a chat. xoxo

  42. TRB Holt says:

    “modeling is the best way to teach” ~ so true Burb! I remember when you were little you too were my shadow. you did everything I did. I think the only thing I really did not like you wanting to do with me was use the toilet brush, I let you but it was not fun for me! I am so proud of your self-taught sewing, as you know I tried for years to instill the love I have for it in you….I would like to think I did and you just brought it out when you were ready! OH and about those legos, I STILL have all of the ones you and Trav spent hours with…they are all washed and organized waiting for Margot & Ruby to build their image of the sun! I love you so….xoxo, Mom

  43. Gramomster says:

    TRB you must have been an awesome Mama yourself. I love reading your comments to Nici and the darling girls.

  44. Alanah says:

    I have recently found your blog and really enjoy it. I have an 14month old son and just this weekend we are setting up an art area for him. Thanks for the inspiration!
    Alanah.

  45. Alanah says:

    I have recently found your blog and really enjoy it. I have an 14month old son and just this weekend we are setting up an art area for him. Thanks for the inspiration!
    Alanah.

  46. zippitypow says:

    I love love love this post. I get to make art with kids (and grown up kids) all day, and spend my life focused on telling people “there is no wrong way, just as long as you are expressing yourself!” I think its the fundamental most important thing. I can’t wait to have littles and an art set up for them!