|Turkey centerpiece made from handprint cutouts of kid art.|
I mean, who doesn’t love a handprint turkey? Even better – a construction paper feather crown. Or a family portrait done up in crayons and colored pencils. Who would ever spend money on glitzy decorations when homemade treasures are so plentiful?
Recently, my Aunt Pat discovered a piece of artwork I made for her when I was a kid. It is a drawing made shortly after I spent the day making kites with her husband, Big John. She shared it with me via email, and the moment it popped up on my screen, I nearly leaped out of my chair.
Three things I should tell you about this drawing.
- The kites looked almost exactly like this, pink bows on the tails and all. However, apparently I started taking artistic liberties at a very young age because the fact of the matter is, the kites never flew. Too heavy. I’m rather impressed with myself for making up the difference in this illustration.
- Again, taking artistic liberties…we lived nowhere near the mountains. At all. At that age, I had never even seen a real mountain so I have no idea what I was drawing here. BUT. Weirdly though, ten years later, I lived in the mountains and my daily view consisted of three prominent peaks with two littler tips, eerily similar to this one. That probably seems coincidental to you, but to me it’s downright spooky.
- Big John past away last year. My memories of him, shared with him, are treasured that much more. I have photos of him, and they are wonderful, but if someone had taken a photo of all of us that day as we tried to fly the kites, the results would have been lackluster at best. Sure, a photo might have been more accurate, but it would never capture the spirit and meaning of this drawing. A photo would have never made me leap out of my chair the way this drawing did.
And that’s the thing of it – art, kid art in particular, is infused with the sort of color, vibrancy and life-force I can only chase after as an adult. You can’t get that in a photo. You just can’t.
When the folks at Crayola approached me about becoming a sponsor, at first, I thought we would be a bad match. I’m not a parent. I wear too much leopard. I don’t play with crayons and markers
Then I thought, Well, actually, a lot of why Thanksgiving is special is because it is tradition. Nostalgia. It’s about making memories. And some of my best memories are triggered by something I made as a kid. In fact, without ever intending this to happen, Crayola has been a part of my life for thirty years. Some of my most treasured possessions are works created (by various artists of various ages) using Crayola products.
This is something I am thankful for.
I don’t know if you will be sharing your holiday with kids (big kids count too!) but I hope you will take a minute to do something creative. Pull out a box of markers. Get the paints. Be messy. Make some memories.
This post is sponsored by Crayola – an amazing resource for kid-friendly art supplies. Thank you for supporting AP sponsors.