I wish I could say that every day involved a creative pursuit in my house. It doesn’t. Unless you include the creativity required to ask a kid for the eight thousandth time to “move that random pile of crap off the kitchen table NOW!’ and actually get results this time around, or figuring out the scheduling gyrations that happen on the busiest night of the week, or constructing a plan that will actually work to get the Christmas decorations packed up and put away (if you’ve got the creative strategy for that last one, do share – Christmas decoration still spread throughout the house and piled in the dining room? Guilty.)
So while it’s not an everyday occurrence that the kids or I get to indulge in our creative passions, it is the pulsing undercurrent that flows through our homeschooling years together. We cook and we sew and we build and we plant and we sculpt. We sing and we dance and we draw and we paint and we break and we fix (a lot of those last two). And it works for us on a purely scratch-our-creative-itch level, with many of the hands-on projects we’ve done over the years still part of our everyday life, providing us not only with creative outlets, but with home décor and discussion touchpoints throughout the house. And maybe most importantly, we have visual benchmarks of our schooling years, some in the form of lasting projects like wall hangings and framed prints and sculptures, others existing only in photos.
Until the last few months, I’ve always balanced raising and schooling the kids with a “real” job as the executive director of a non-profit arts organization. After 65 years in business, the association folded, ending the job I had for the past 17 years.
It’s an interesting void I was left with (aside from the obvious - financial), no longer having to mentally juggle work and home responsibilities. No question it was a nice change that came at a welcome time - the end of my most recent pregnancy followed by the holidays. The breathing space was most appreciated.
But now that the pregnancy is over and the holidays have passed (aside from the decorations in my dining room that betray that idea), we’re back in the school swing of things and my mind is less cluttered than it’s been for years now that I’m not keeping a dying non-profit on life support. And it occurred to me that maybe, just maybe, some of the projects I’ve led my kids through over the years might be interesting and valuable to others and finding ways to share them would be a worthwhile pursuit, maybe even a budding business.
Piecing thing together, that’s what I have experience with, whether a quilt or a school curriculum or a family project. And that’s where I’m going with this. I’m combining my passion for all things handmade with my love of teaching and my experience with home learning, in the hopes of putting a little more creative handwork within the average parent’s reach. We’re not talking high art here – but hand wrought goodness that enhances your life at home and your lives together.
All this is to say that my goal is to provide creative outlets that support your educational goals, be they at home or at school, while helping you create lasting family touchstones that allow you to share your experiences within your family and with others.
I hope you’ll join me on this journey.