Monday, July 9, 2012

Failing as an Artistic Parent

I have seriously failed as a parent.

Okay, that's a little harsh for this particular topic today. I'll rephrase.

I've seriously failed as an artistic parent.

This weekend was the first full weekend we've had as a family since we first flew in a few weeks ago. Hubby's job has him work a lot of weekends, or at least go in for a few hours one of the days, but this weekend he had no weekend duty. The bad thing is, we're broke. We have a house full of food thanks to my amazing couponing skills, and the bills are paid, but because of needing to save money to pay for the movers to deliver our stuff next week, we're broke right now. So having a full weekend together isn't as glamorous as we hoped it would be.

Oh well, I just looked at it as a way to further exercise my new frugal ways, and figure out something for us to do that's either free or hella cheap, and fun. As I began researching on the internet, I found that our local art museum had free admission for military members. Hells yes, an art museum. I pitched the idea to Hubby, and was met with...

"That's boring."

What? What? An art museum is not boring. I decided to go over his head and take my proposition to the kids. They'd be excited about an art museum.

I pitched the idea to The Girl first, who stared at me like I had grown a second head. "That's boring" she said.

Hubby burst out laughing.

I called The Ginger into the room. I pitched the idea to him (after telling Hubby and The Girl to keep their mouths shut so they didn't persuade him to the dark side), and after thinking about it, he replied, "I think Y-E-S" and smiled this huge smile.

That's when it hit me that I've failed one of my children as an artistic parent. Before The Girl left the room, I asked her why she thought the art museum would be boring.

"It just sounds like it would be, Mom. Just walking around looking at drawings and stuff. Seems lame."

Her words stabbed right through my little artistic heart.

"How on earth could you say that, honey? Art is not boring. It's a form of expression. People put their hearts
and souls into art, and you get to look at each piece and see how it makes you feel. You can figure out which styles you like and which ones you don't like. Have I taught you nothing as an artistic parent?"

"I mean, I guess we could go. I'm just not as interested in art as you and The Ginger are. Sorry, mom."

Hubby tried consoling me, tried making me feel better by telling me that everyone has different interests, and what one person finds intriguing another person may find boring. But I wouldn't hear it. Not art. Not my thing.

That's when I made the decision to figure out some sort of crafts to do when you are broke. I can't have this. I am an artist. I paint, I re-do furniture, I sketch, I put permanent art onto people's bodies... I am an artist, even if I'm not out in the workforce doing it anymore. I can't have a kid that doesn't like art.

Sure, she got the athletic genes from her dad, and The Ginger and I melt if we have to go outside to do athletic things. Sure, she's a heck of a little musician, which, she got from her dad, too (he used to play the drums). But I'm an artist, damnit, and my children- both of them- need to be artsy fartsy like me.

So, it's my summer goal to make my daughter artsy fartsy. The Ginger will be fine- he loves drawing, coloring, and I'm sure he'd enjoy any medium of art that I have him try.

In the meantime, I'll try and figure where I went wrong. I mean, who doesn't like art? How could anyone find an art museum boring?

I mean, it was better than Hubby's idea for the day, the air and space museum. Now that's boring...

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  1. I have been trying to get my oldest to be artsy. He's way cerebral and always groans when I tell him he has to do art. This summer, when my brother and mom came to visit, I instituted mandatory art time. Everyone, including brother and hubby had to do art. By the time they left, my 5 year old nephew was sure he had gone to art camp.

    Everyone had fun, though. I guarantee it. They just didn't want to admit it. People are stubborn about art. They think you have to be a certain personality to enjoy making art. I think art is for everyone. Oh, and that music? That's art, just a different kind.

    1. I finally printed out some artsy fartsy ideas for the kids for the summer- crafts, projects, random to-do's. I agree, they just need to be cultivated, lol.