Practical Creativity

Andrew and his new handmade stick horse.

The Grimes County Fair begins Saturday, June 4th.  For one week, the county is extremely busy as kids show off the best of their animal projects, cooking abilities, and creative arts entries.  The community comes out to support the youth as spectators and as buyers of both animals, food, and art.

As the mother of five children, this up-coming week is going to be hectic.  The weeks leading up to the fair are just as busy at my house.  Why?  Because I have two children who like to enter all sorts of creative arts entries.  Kyla and Jake are busy knitting, crocheting, making jewelry sets, matting original art work, mounting photography, and trying out new recipes to enter in the county fair. 

I have felt like I live in a creative workshop for the past two weeks as they finalize their projects.  I have different colors of yarn sititing on top of our entertainment system.  I have a collection of crocheted coasters from which each child will pick out his or her best one to enter.  Crocheted dishcloths fill my kitchen drawer.  Beautiful jewelry sets are being mounted on black felt. 

Kyla made a wall hanging with silk flowers which now hangs on my dining room wall replacing the painting I once had there.  The only reason it is hanging on the wall right now is so that her little brothers do not destroy or harm it before Saturday.  It does not match the decor of the room so she said, “Mom, we need to repaint the walls.”  Oh, she has to be joking.

 As crazy as these past weeks have been, it has been so nice to see my children engrossed in what else they can make.  To explore other skills they have to showcase at the fair.  Their hands have been very busy.  They have not been idle at all.   

Every entry that they are entering is creative yet practical.  Every kitchen needs a dishcloth.  Why not a handmade one?  One that is soft and exactly the size and color you want.  Coasters can save the finish of your table.  Why not one made with love?  Do you have a bare spot on your wall that is calling for a decoration?  Fill it with a photograph, painting, or a flower arrangement. 

During this fair week, my two youngest boys are participating in a Kids Rodeo.  They will compete in three events.  Dummy Roping, a Boot Scramble, and last but not least a Stick Horse Race.  I realized yesterday afternoon that they had used their stick horses so much that they were both broken.  I had to find two more stick horses.

My step-dad heard our needs and delivered.  He made the coolest stick horses for my boys.  Using what he had on hand, he was able to create a one-of-a-kind stick horse for each child.  I was impressed! 

Sometimes we think of creativity as this lofty thing.  Something only the extremely talented can atttain.  We think of it in terms of masterpieces like Michelangelo or DaVinci.  In the musical world, Bach and Mozart come to mind.  These men were creative.  They were also geniuses in their area of expertise. 

As great as their creativity was, it is easy to feel inadequate.  Why even try?  If you are like me, you will not be invited to paint the Sistene Chapel.  However, do not knock practical creativity.  It is what makes a house a home.  It is way you express yourself.  It is rewarding and freeing. 

The county fair encourages practical creativity by having a huge creative arts section of the week long event.  The fair is not only about raising animals.  It is a way to showcase your creativity in many different areas.  From welding to baking, from quilting to watercolors, children, teens, and adults enter their best creative entries. 

Check out your local county fair.  Plan to enter it next year.  Spend the next year exploring areas in which you can be creative in practical ways.  Practical creativity makes great gifts.  Most importantly, it gives you an outlet to be more creative in your everyday life.

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1 Response to Practical Creativity

  1. Thank you so much for the interesting outlook on creativity. I really appreciate your viewpoint and can understand the process better!

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