“Creativity is God’s gift to us. Using our creativity is our gift back to God.”
~Julia Cameron, The Artists Way
“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” ~Pablo Picasso
It’s school vacation week here, and in an effort to minimize screen time for my kids this week, I have been scouring Pinterest for some good craft ideas. My kids love to create things, and I encourage them to do something creative every day (especially during school vacation.) Here are just a few ideas we have come across so far:
On Friday, my 11-year old decided to attempt to make a wooden rocking chair out of clothespins. She was beyond thrilled with the end result! She modified the original instructions and used popsicle sticks as well so she could fit her Beanie Boos in the chair. She was so proud of herself that she decided to make another one for her friend and she taught my 9-year old to make one, too!
Check out the complete instructions to make the original version of this chair at Crafty Corner.
My 11-year old also went to a cake decorating class on Friday and made this bunny cake for Easter. Again, she was super proud of herself. It makes me happy to see my kids happy with the results of their hard work. 🙂
On Saturday, my daughters wanted to make this cute rabbit fruit platter for Easter. I let the girls cut the fruit and arrange the design by themselves, and again, they were very proud of the final result.
Here are the original instructions for this rabbit fruit platter from Worthpinning.com.
On Monday, my 6-year-old decided to make this “Our Family ROCKS!” rock garden. She wrote “Our Family Rocks” on the big rock in the middle, and wrote the names of each family member and pet on a smaller rock around the big rock. She was proud of her creation as well, and now everyone who comes over our house will be greeted by this rock garden.
Here is the original picture that inspired us from Pinterest:
I don’t know what else is in store for the rest of the week, but I do know taking the time to be creative each day is good for the kids and it has many benefits, so I will keep encouraging it!
Creativity is good for our health, too! It can help us to become healthy in mind, body, and spirit. It is great for our emotional health because it is a great stress-reliever. As a result of less stress, it may improve our physical health. Creativity connects us with our source, so it is a wonderful way to improve our spiritual health as well. Here are a few benefits of creativity that I have personally found:
Benefits of Creativity
1. It’s fun! It’s relaxing and is a great way to relieve stress and get our mind off all of our problems. Don’t you always feel better when you just sit with a child and color? I find it therapeutic, and it makes me happy 🙂
2. Freedom! There are so many ways to express our creativity. Whether it is writing, cooking, baking, photography, drawing, painting, music, sewing, wood crafts, or whatever it is you like to do, there are so many ways to put our personality into our creations. In art, there isn’t only one right way to do something. Just have fun with it and find what works best for you and add your own style.
3. Creativity helps you to discover your true self and allows you to express yourself in your own unique way. When I started writing in my journal years ago, I would simply write about the daily events that were happening in my life at the time. As I wrote more and more often, I would get insights on certain things and I started to discover who I really am. I began to develop my own beliefs and form my own opinions on many topics rather than just believing what I had always been told. I also began to come up with many new ideas of my own and I started to become more passionate about many topics. In my writing, I found my true self. And in that self, I found God.
4. It keeps you aligned with your source. When you use your creativity, you are allowing God to work through you. Sometimes when I write, the words just flow onto the paper without me even thinking about them. It doesn’t happen every time I write, but when it does happen, I feel it is God working through me. During those times, they are God’s words, not mine. I felt that happen when I wrote my very first post on this blog “Secrets to Happiness on the Lifelong Journey to Complete Wellness.” I literally woke up that morning, and the words just flowed onto my paper in about 45 minutes. Then I got the idea to start this blog. To this day, that post is still the most popular post on this blog. It’s funny how God works sometimes.
5. Serenity. Whenever I feel stressed out, I stop what I’m doing, sit down with my journal, and write. Just me, God, and my journal. This immediately brings me an immense amount of peace and all my problems seem to melt away. I am sure this would work with other forms of creativity as well, whether it be music, dance, drawing, etc. Whatever your preferred method of creativity is, I urge you to try it next time you are stressed out.
6. A finished project gives you a feeling of accomplishment and pride in your work. When my daughters finish an art project that they are happy with, I love seeing them light up and filled with feelings of joy and pride for all the time and effort they put into the project.
7. It can connect you to others with common interests. My 11-year-old started taking a woodworking class this past year. She is in a scroll-sawing club, and has made new friends who are always ready and willing to help her out and share their ideas with her. Joining that club has been one of the best things she has ever done. It gives her something to look forward to, and is consistently the highlight of her week.
Making daily time for creativity a priority is a great self-care tip! I believe we are all artists. I love Julia Cameron’s quote above where she says “using our creativity is our gift back to God.” When we are gone from this earth, our creations will still live on. Our creations are our contribution to this planet and a true expression of our uniqueness.
As we grow up, responsibilities seem to take over and we put less importance on creating and having fun (I know I do, anyway.) I do take the time to write each day, but I also enjoy doing crafts and making photo books for my girls. When I take the time to do those things I enjoy and actually have some fun, I feel guilty. I feel like I “should” be doing something “more productive.” I feel like my house “should” be cleaner. I feel like my husband is working so hard to support our family, and I’m doing something I enjoy? Those are just a few things that run through my head when I’m feeling guilty about taking the time out for me to create. I need to work on getting over those feelings of guilt because I know creativity is good for me AND my family. Whenever I am creating something, I feel relaxed and more connected to my source and I am happier and more at peace. After all, when mom is happy, then everyone is happy, right?
I am going to make more of an effort to follow my own advice, set a good example for my kids, and make it a priority to take the time to create something every day.
What are you going to create today?