Kid Art

flowers in spare tireA spontations, ephemeral and collaborative effort using found items.

flowers in spare tire

Sadly, this piece of artwork was dismantled immediately after being photographed as it was in an area that required “cleaning up.”

Rousseau and Other School Lessons

Today Ivy came home from school and proudly showed me her latest art work. Fortunately for me, and my rusty art history, Ivy also identified it for me as Henri Rousseau’s The Sleeping Gypsy.

I took that as a good sign that not only has she been paying attention in art class but that it was going to be a good evening. Some days Ivy comes home bubbly and expansive with stories to share about school. But some days, tired days, we hear almost nothing.

The bubbly days are fun. We hear about the school drama, So and So “was this close to getting his B flipped!” and sometimes Ivy even shares what sort of skills they are working on in class.Ivy laughing in snow

Happily, Ivy had a great evening and shared all sorts with us about her day. In fact, for the rest of the evening she practiced another skill she learned today.

Ivy practiced while playing with Clara, reading books, eating dinner and getting ready for bed. She didn’t even need any encouragement from me to keep working at it.Ivy winter on fence

Yes, tomorrow I’m sure the friend who taught Ivy will be very impressed with just how loudly she can burp on command.

Ivy’s Kansas Picture

Ivy drew me a picture of our Kansas trip at school today.

Normally, ( Now would be the time to skip to the picture if you are an extra sentimental type.) I burn all of her papers when she isn’t looking. (I tried to warn you! Don’t lecture me, my house is small and it’s mostly crap!) But I liked this one, as I told Ivy “We should take a picture of it with you just in case something happens to it!”


Ivy, Jane and I watching the geese fly over the camper.

John says with these kinds of admissions I’ll never get any votes if I run for congress.

Good thing that’s not on my to do list.

Right On Schedule

Almost a year ago I wrote about Ivy and the “Art Guilt” I was suffering from.  The problem resolved itself rather well in the last year. Ivy stopped drawing people, got into coloring books (which no matter how nicely she colors I have no problem getting rid of after a few days) and when she makes crafts at the library story time she likes to give them away to friends – perfect.

Today I’m worried the problem may be returning, she’s back to people, and now they have accessories.

Look: it’s me, with a river, grass, two anklets, a necklace, a bracelet and a pretend Ivy swimming in the river.

What do you think another year and I’ll get pants?

Now if you’ll recall my plan for last years art work was, “…go put them some place stupid, lose them, forget about them and probably find them years in the future having been eaten by mice. ”  When I went to add this picture to the others I discovered I’m right on schedule… I’ve lost them.

Art Guilt


It’s a common theme amongst mothers.  A mother can find something to feel guilty about in anything.   Working mom, stay at home mom, public schools,  McDonald’s, nursing , co-sleeping, formula feeding, diapers,  soap, playing,  learning,  reading, house cleaning, TV watching, socialization, pretty much if a mom or a kid can do it some mother somewhere is feeling guilty about it.

I like to think I do pretty well at avoiding feeling guilty, not perfect but perhaps better than average. Lately though I’ve been struggling with a doozy dose of Mom Guilt.

My current dilemma…


Admittedly what Ivy creates has only recently achieved a status that I would call artwork, but whatever you call it what do I DO with it? In the last few days she went on a frenzy and turned most of a package of computer paper into pictures for us.  In the past her pictures have involved five swipes of color on one sheet of paper.  I can leave them sit for a few days by which time they get eaten, crumpled or spilled on and then I can throw them away guilt free.   Now I have a ream of pictures, many of which are family portraits. (Just in case you were wondering these aren’t heads and necks, they are heads and legs. Just wanted to clear that up for you so Ivy didn’t have to.)

The sensible part of me says to follow my past plan and throw them away after a few days. The sentimental part of me wants to keep them. The sensible part says, “Where Jessie, Where would you keep them?” to which the sentimental part answers that there must be someplace that I can stash a few drawings. Then the sensible side says that there are truly NO artwork storing area in the house and I’ll end up putting them someplace stupid, lose them, forget about them and find them in ten years having been eaten by mice. The sentimental part retorts that at least I’ll have tried.

As my multiple personalities war inside me,  all I end up with is a big dose of guilt as I slowly filter pictures off to the garbage. To combat the Mom Guilt I have collected a few pictures and stapled them together into a book. The sentimental part of me is going to go put them some place stupid, lose them, forget about them and probably find them years in the future having been eaten by mice.

But at least I’ll have tried.