Saturday, October 13, 2012

Parenting: Shaping Human Character and Gifting Out Older Art Pieces

"Parenthood is a partnership with God. You are working with the Creator of the universe in shaping human character and determining destiny." ~ Ruth Vaugh

This beautiful quote was posted by the wonderful and loving Mimi Keel on the Jacob's Well Family Coop page.  I love the way the generation of parents who are eight- ten years older then me think.  I notice that so many of them are parenting from a place of enough vs. scarcity.  They love life, practice love through vulnerability and honesty, and encourage living a meaningful life through facilitating experiences with their children..   I think this is especially true when it comes to the idea of parenting a child as a way of shaping human character, but not hovering over their children.  Isn't that what it comes down to??  You are trying to shape a wholehearted, beautiful child that embraces courage, compassion, and love in their daily life.   Mostly, you are trying to shape your child to live a purposeful, meaningful life.  No small task, right??  But I truly believe this happens by modeling and building authentic relationships through shared experiences.  One of my favorite things to do with Shyla is walk her around urban neighborhoods in St. Louis.  I love to teach her about colors while I embrace my love for street art and up and coming neighborhoods. This morning I had a few extra minutes after yoga to take Shyla down to Cherokee Street.  We just drove around and practiced out colors when we saw graffiti and painted windows:

These were Shyla's favorite colored pieces that we saw during our brief photo stint down Cherokee Street this morning. She said "pink, purple, rojo, verde."  I love how she keeps trying to label her colors in both english and spanish.

This week I have given away 3 pieces of art that have hung in various shows this last spring and summer.  It's funny, I am picky about who I give my art away to.   I guess it's about vulnerability and sharing it with people that I feel are worthy of getting that piece of me.  My photos are a part of me, especially when  I take the time to photograph, edit, print, frame, and submit them into art shows.  However, I am not one of those artists that hoards her artwork for the next show.  In fact, I tend to give my art away when I feel like a season of my life is coming to a close.  Which is exactly how I feel now.  The pieces that I have created and shown in the last six months were created in a very highly, creative point in time. A point in time where I was feeling completely asimiliated in St. Louis and embracing the creative life in this  great city that I have had to grow myself to love (I don't believe you grow to love a place, you grow yourself to practice joy wherever you live).   I am STILL building from those experiences.  But pregnancy and generating a new life inside my body also means creating space in my  heart and house for new opportunities for creativity and sacred moments that I can capture through the lens of my camera.  Maybe that's what nesting really is, just a mom's way of creating space in her house and heart to love her children (even though there is  enough)---creating space where you can photograph more moments of vulnerability and beauty.  For me when I give my art away to the people that have earned that right to get those intimate, creative pieces of me --I am paying forward all the inspiration and love they have planted in my own life and helped grow.  So if you ever get a piece of art from, consider it a ridiculously high compliment
We briefly walked by 2720 this morning to capture some photos of the street art there.  I just like all the fun graffiti and street art that exists on this side of the street.  Plus, this place is pretty rad too.

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