Sunday, July 17, 2016

Museums and the Invention of Don't Lose Your Marbles

All of my parenting life I've wanted to ensure my kids didn't end up living near museums and not seeing them.  This is something I've been thinking about since Wren was a baby.  We tried in May to make it down to the Nasher and the DMA, but we stopped at Klyde Warren Park first which is where Wren gashed her chin open on a rock.  Instead of studying works of art, I saw the meaty innards of my child's face.  I just threw up in my mouth typing that.

We decided to try again a couple of weeks ago, but things got off to a rocky start.  Sammy wanted to go on his individual date with D, which wasn't set to take place until the afternoon.  Asher and Eowyn had some sort of dispute over a towel that got ugly fast.  Wren did not want to be anywhere near "the park where I almost died and everyone saw me bleed."  The museums she was cool with, but the thought of even being near the park caused quite a bit of anxiety.

D and I gave each other that look you give when you've planned a great day for your kids and realize they have the potential to ruin it before you even make it to the garage.  You know the look.  So I handed five marbles to all the people in the house over three and explained that if anyone whined, yelled, or otherwise acted inappropriately, they would have to sacrifice a marble.  That included D and me.

For whatever reason, all of us did great that day.  We hit two museums, Chipotle, and no one lost even one marble.  At the first signs of bad behavior, one of us would warn the other, "Don't lose your marbles!" and we'd all laugh and recalibrate our thinking.

The weird thing is how well this worked for me.  I did not want my marbles taken away from me by my school-aged children, and just the threat of that helped me reframe my words and focus on problem prevention and solving instead of just reacting emotionally.

Here are some pictures of our artsy adventures:

Identifying art on a scavenger hunt.

Eowyn in purple.  This is her art appreciation face.

The spinny chairs at the Nasher were a hit!

Creating our own art at the DMA.

My men

My loves.

D making my line creation look as sad as it really is.

You guessed it.  I made the lopsided hexagon.  It took
me several tries.  I'm sorry Mrs. Walker, my tenth-grade geometry
teacher.  I know you tried.  

Waiting for fourth of July fireworks the same weekend as the
museum visits.

I wish I had a picture of the first time Wren and Sam saw a picture of one of the big paintings displayed outside the DMA.  Eyes got wide, jaws dropped open.  I will always remember it because it's what I want for them, to be surprised and amazed by art.

No comments:

Post a Comment