I was going to list “Going to the Observatory” as my ‘fun’ thing for today, but it was a big disappointment. I’d never been to the Observatory before and I’ve always wanted to go so I thought this would be a good opportunity for a fun thing to do. The telescope they have is from the 1920′s and not nearly as powerful as I thought it would be. We looked at Jupiter and the Moon, but all I saw of Jupiter was a white dot with 3 smaller white dots beside it (Jupiter’s moons), and the lens was frosted up when looking at the moon so I could see more detail with the naked eye than looking through the telescope. Not fun.
So I came home and did some sketching. I do not consider myself ‘artistic’. I HATED art class in school…HATED IT! But I do like to create. I just don’t have any allusions that I’m any good (when it comes to ‘artsy’-type things). But as I’ve learned more about grace and God’s love and as I learn to extend more grace and love to myself I am more free to create. I no longer expect myself to create something ‘perfect’ (and so get completely stressed out when I cannot accomplish that). It is easier to enjoy the process, to look at creating more from the perspective of ‘play’ than accomplishment. And with that comes a lot of freedom to try new things and have fun with it, even if it isn’t an artistic masterpiece. Just as I praise my daughter when she excitedly shows me her creations (even though they’re not works of art), I believe God is excited when I step out of my comfort zone and create something new (even though there are people who can create much more beautiful things than I can).
So I have been exploring drawing and sketching. I went on a field trip with my middle son this Fall. We went to Brightwater and they had a professional artist teach the kids about painting landscapes with watercolors. He was so passionate about art it was infectious. I found myself actually thinking that I might enjoy trying painting (something I never would have thought of before). Mind you, this artist has been doing this for years and I know he makes it sound easier than it is. But he did a very good job at creating a safe place for the kids to explore this medium. I haven’t tried it yet but I think I’ll play around with paints sometime soon. I believe as a result of this field trip my middle son was inspired. He asked for a paint set for Christmas and got a gift card to Michael’s for art supplies so he picked up some more paint and paper as well as charcoal pencils. So I was playing with charcoal today – fun, but a little messy.