Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Age of Exploration

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up. -- Pablo Picasso 

I'd like to believe that Lola has two very creative parents. Parents who see creativity as freedom of self expression, a moment to step beside one's self, to think outside of the box, to step closer to who it is we are meant to be. We think the arts are just as important as all the maths, sciences, and literary pieces in the world. We want to raise our child as a well rounded one, able and anxious about exploring new mediums and styles, subjects and topics, allowing her to choose whichever path makes her feel most alive.

I've been wanting to take Lola to Art Beast, a local art studio tailored for children ages six and under. I've heard nothing but wonderful things about this place. Local parents rave about how much fun their child(ren) have, adding extra emphasis on the extended naps they take when they get home.

Lola was a little shy at first, keeping close watch on the others from the dress-up room's stage. She seemed unsure, frightened even. She was still, examining the way the other children played, eventually feeling comfortable enough to interact with them. She watched carefully as a little boy ran around the room wearing the knight's horse costume. She studied him, or should I say his horse, watching as he galloped proudly in and out of the castle, waiting for her chance to try it on. I was amazed she was even interested in wearing a costume, but she did and she wore it proudly!
She doodled with chalk, strung vibrantly colored beads onto fuzzy pipe cleaners, and made a mess with the moon dough. She had a good time exploring and the mess, well it really didn't matter because I didn't have to clean it up!
 She dabbled in paint, allowing her brush to be her tool to create the beautiful masterpieces which flowed over large pieces of paper. She used her imagination in the play house, feeding twin baby dolls eggs and bologna, giving them milk and eventually putting them to bed. A little mommy in the making!
She splashed in the outdoor water section, filling buckets, pots, and pails with funnels and small espresso cups.
 And once we made the short walk home, had lunch, and rested for a bit, we were tempted by the beauty that is Spring. We packed the bag of park goodies, snacks, chalk, and bubbles, and spent the rest of the afternoon shaded by maple trees, cooled by Delta's breeze, and loved by one another. Lola continued creating masterpieces, gravitating towards the new big bright pieces of chalk she received for her birthday from her great-grandma, unknowingly creating the wonderfully chalky legs and bum masterpieces that I love so much!
Thanks for the new chalk, Great Grandma Van Tatenhove! Love you!
 Ah, the age of exploration!


Auntie Sherry said...

What a neat place/experience for her. I'll have to figure out if we have something like that in the Bay Area--I'd imagine that we do. I'm glad that you nurture her creativity. What a fortunate little girl she is. Love you three!

Anika said...

Wow, what a great place! Looks like imaginations could run wild there ;)