Monthly Archives: November 2009
New post on by Jennifer Kolari

Check out a new post on by Jennifer Kolari entitled “Ask Jennifer Kolari: Childhood Anxiety.” This touches many of us and well worth reading.

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Julie and Julia

My daughter Gabi was home sick from school and we decided to climb into bed and watch a movie. With a little prodding from me (shameless, I know) she decided that she wanted to see Julie and Julia, directed by Nora Ephron. I loved it! Oops, sorry, “we loved it!”

I won’t spoil the movie for anyone but let me say that if you love food (which I do) and a good story, you will love this movie. For me, there’s something about being invited into someone’s kitchen that feels more intimate than being invited into their bedroom. I’ve always had the belief that people who really enjoy food feel more passionate about life in general. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it! Also, for a writer who dreams about being whisked away by a great publisher, the film was a fantasy. Sigh…

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Gabi’s Art

untitledGabi is in Grade 5 in an Arts Program and is loving it! There are 4 general categories: Visual Arts, Drama, Music and Dance. She is comfortable in the last three but has mixed feelings about the first. Here’s some background.

Her 3 brothers, her father and I believe we can’t draw. This is emphasized by the fact that my sister, her husband and their two girls are amazing visual artists. Their oldest daughter and our youngest son went to preschool together and the difference even then was astounding. So much so that she became extremely upset one day because she believed that her cousin was going to “fail” preschool because he couldn’t draw. My 3 sons took their lead from my husband and I and good-naturedly accepted that we had other strengths. In fact, they liked having their cousins to lean on when they need help with projects!

Gabi, on the other hand, hard on herself at the best of times, does not enjoy that her strength doesn’t lie in her “drawing” skills. It has caused her much distress and heartache. It took us a while to realize that the problem was, that, unlike our other children, she loves to draw. So we bought her instruction books, encouraged her and praised her and stood helplessly by for the most part while she continued to berate herself.

This past week changed our perspective. We had conformed to the “normal” expectation of art and felt that a true artist could replicate objects, in particular the human form. I’ve lost count of the times that I have said, “I can’t draw a stick figure.” Anyway, Gabi and I paid our local arts store a visit and she chose a pack of two canvases and some acrylic paints. Feeling like a real artist she sat down to paint and I left her to it.

“I’ve finished it, Mom,” she said. I was truly surprised at what I saw. It was absolutely beautiful and made me understand that art is not only about form but about colour, feeling and passion.

Everyone who wants to be can be an artist. It took my ten year old daughter to show me that.

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