Wednesday, May 31, 2006

What inspires me...

 Art never fails to inspire, elevate, calm , and motivate me.

No matter my mood, looking at paintings and sculpture soothes me. When I go to this blog, I am faced with joy, longing and ... yes even a bit of envy. Leanne is so talented, I wish I was as good of an artist as she is.

Here are two drawings I did as a teen in high school. I think with the first I was 14, and the second 15 or 16. I wish the pictures had come out a little better, they are a bit blurry because of my dying digital camera and because of the glare proof glass... click them to see more detail.

The picnic scene hangs in my dining room, some days I don't even notice it. On others I crave the feel of shiny pencils and scratchy paper on my skin. The drawing of the girl, you probably recognize... that was me when I was about 6 or 7. I drew this for my mother as a Christmas present, and the memory of her response when she opened it makes this drawing hard for me to look at... well in the past anyway. I paid for every part of this present, with my time and hard earned money. I was hoping she would love me for drawing for her... something she complained about a lot. I was "so talented, but didn't love her enough to draw something for her". When I finally did, instead of matching my excitement... she crushed me.

Today, I removed the bubble wrap to take a picture, and I was pleasantly surprised to see an image of myself smiling like that. I think she (young me) deserves a place on my walls some where, if not only because I am proud of what I accomplished in this drawing... even if my mother was not. I am a little ashamed of myself for not making the time for my art, and only have a few paintings to show for my years since graduating from high school 20 years ago.

Anyway... seeing my own work, and not being critical of it for once in my life has really, truly inspired me! I can't wait to get my hands on something and get to work!smile

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Things that go bump in the heart (or down the stairs)

My baby Emma fell down the stairs yesterday, I was horrified. Luckily she had only made it to the 4th step, they are not carpeted and if she had fallen from the top... Oye, I don't even want to think about it. She managed to hit her head in several places. I started to yell at Anna for not closing the gate when she came downstairs yesterday morning, but quickly stopped. I am the adult here, and it's my responsibility to make sure the gate is closed, not my 5 year old.

I heard 5 loud thuds and then crying. I panicked because I couldn't find her at first, then when I saw that the gate was open, I freaked. I calmed her a bit, then stripped her to look for bumps, bruises and broken bones. John took us to the ER, and everything looked ok. She never lost consciousness, and cried right away, but I wanted to take her in anyway. I'm no Britney Spears , y'all. Whether or not my kid has any signs of injury, I'm gonna take them in. I would hate to make a stupid mistake that I would regret for the rest of my life.

The ER nurses said that I shouldn't worry, that they see a lot of these types of injuries, and that babies usually bounce well. The thought that hordes of women were bringing their toddlers in for falling failed to comfort me. On the contrary, I have resolved to avoid tap water here in town completely. Well, there has to be an explanation for mass stupidity, right? Uh, wait... That's right. Paint chips.

The whole ordeal must have really wiped her out because she slept all night without waking her normal 2-3 times, and she took a nap after being up for only an hour this morning. I asked her if she wanted to go night-night, making the sign for sleep. She responded with a hearty head nod. After and hour and a half, she was her normal perky self.

Anna, on the other hand is experiencing pain of another sort.

Remember when I was telling you about 4 months ago that Anna was completely beside herself over a boy in class? What was his name... Oh yeah, Eric. The crush for Eric has officially bitten the dust. My sweet (mostly) 5 year old has experienced her first Hollywood crush. Sheesh.

If any of you have children between the ages of 4 and 12, you may be aware of a little movie that was on the Disney channel called High School Musical. My blood runs cold as Bop to the Top or whatever the heck it's called claws it's way through my brain at the very mention of the movie. *Sigh,* Anyway, this young man is the current object of her affliction, er- I mean affection.
His name is Zac Efron and he plays the lead in the movie. The movie is kind of cute and funny, a cleaner version of Grease for today's generation. Man, what am I, 80 or something? Today's generation, I sound like my grandma.

( let the digressing begin...)

The very first song, Start of Something New reminded me of something, I couldn't remember at first but then I realized it was I Had the Time of My Life from the movie Dirty Dancing. That alone should have the average person cringing, and in my mind High School Musical is guilty by association.. *My apologies to the reader who does like Dirty Dancing, no offense is meant. I just really hate that movie* I do like that the movies avoids the whole "must exchange saliva" dilemma, has a positive message, and overall is kid friendly.

As far as the crush goes,I have to admit that my girl has good taste. He has a young David Cassidy look to him, and he looks like he would be the kind of boy to bring flowers for his date and his date's mother. Anna drew a picture of him and put it in her locket, the very locket that used to carry Eric's likeness. She showed me her drawing and blushed.

"It's not very good," she said with a tinge of sadness. So what did I do? What any good mom would do, I fanned the flames of her obsession by printing out a picture for her locket. She was so happy and embarrassed at the same time, she didn't know what to do with herself. At bed time, she confided to me that she couldn't sleep because she couldn't stop thinking about him.

This morning she told her dear old dad that we were getting on her nerves teasing her about Zac. Later she told me that he isn't her boyfriend, she just likes him.

I cannot get the music out of my head. Between the Disney channel's quarter hourly propaganda , the CD we bought her last week, and now the DVD she bought with her graduation money *insert whimper here*, I am slowly going mad. I was walking around singing Bop to the Top, and my husband begged me to stop singing it. It's not my fault, I have been gradually tortured and conditioned over the last 2 months. I didn't beat them, so I joined them. I am a product of my environment?

Ok, snap out of it... No more bopping.

I have to cut the kid some slack on her obsession because I distinctly remember being completely head over heels for Blue Hawaii Elvis at that age. Whenever I heard his voice I would drop everything (or at least whatever a 5 year old might be doing) and go kiss the television screen. I loved Elvis so much that when he became Old and Bloated Vegas Elvis, I didn't care. I had tacked the album cover to my door, and it stayed there for years until I left home, even after I knew better.

So, (as my brother says) to make a short story long... I guess we have to honor her wishes. This is serious. No more teasing or joking, because love is no laughing matter. I know how it feels to irrationally love a person I could never even hope to meet. I know how it feels to not be able to fall asleep because the very thought of him quickens the heart and the breath all in the same moment. Elvis-schmelvis, I am talking about my husband folks! He had me on pins and needles, waiting for him to ask me out, until finally I made the first move. It was torture. Now I (and my clones) get to return the favor for the rest of his life. *cheeky grin*

Friday, May 19, 2006

Politeness kicks asserooni!

Anna graduated from preschool last night. My baby is all growned up! Ack, I know. It's only preschool, but let me just say that out of all four adults that came to her graduation (Me, John, her Nana, and her great-aunt Sue), not one of us escaped tearfulness at one point or another.

Her class was adorable, and one little guy in particular had the whole audience in stitches. He just want to get off the stage to see his grandpa. They sang 12 Days of School (sung to the tune of 12 days of Christmas), Itsy bitsy Spider, Love Grows, and Good-Bye. The Good-Bye song got us all. Even Anna's teacher teared up. Later I found out from one of the assistant teachers that Sharon, Anna's teacher did a lot better than she usually does. She usually is one big, tear streaked mess. I only hope that Anna and Emma are lucky enough to have other teachers who love kids as much.

Emma really liked seeing her sister perform on stage, she was so excited that she waved to Anna and squealed when Anna waved back. It was loud enough for the gentleman in front of us to jump out of his seat. She is used to seeing her sister singing and dancing, but seeing her up on stage was pretty exciting. Em kept pointing and laughing, and when Anna sang she clapped and swayed to the music. She even sang along a little bit.

They did a slide show of baby pictures and graduation pictures, it was really sweet. The teachers also gave out special awards for each child, and each child won a unique award. Anna won most polite! I couldn't have been prouder. You should have seen me all puffed up with joy and pride. I whispered to John after the program was over that politeness rocks, all the rest was crap. *laugh* I am thinking that this is somewhat of an oxymoron.

Afterwards we went out for Chinese and had a really nice time. We gave Anna some lipgloss, body spray and a CD of her favorite music (at this time), High School Musical. Besides really liking it, she has said that she plans on playing it everyday just to torment me. The force is strong with this one. All I can say is that the Disney Channel's brainwashing tactics are superior, and that what Anna doesn't really know is after hours and hours of High School Musical commercials every day, it's beginning to wear on me. We'll just keep that little tidbit to ourselves, OK? Thank goodness we found a clock radio/CD player on clearance at Target, so she can listen to her music in the privacy of her own room, or else I would probably end up hating it.

I am proud to say that my child is the most polite out of her whole class. I know that I have at least done one thing right as a mom. The first for sure, and hopefully not the last.