by Kristin Nador/@KristinNador
The goal of Write Anywhere venues each week is to encourage myself and other writers and creatives to step outside of their regular routine and discover new ways to spark creativity. The traditional mindset is if we need a change of scenery we need to escape to a cabin in the woods, a beachfront condo or a writers’ colony to focus. The average person doesn’t necessarily have the time or finances to get away. So we need to come up with more innovative ways of “getting away”. What do you do when you have no money, no extra time and you’re stuck in the house with angry sinuses? A blogging friend and a closet full of toys gave me an idea.
Write Anywhere #43: Play Time
SSpjut’s post Unlocking Your Inner Child
Her blog post in turn made me think about getting in touch with MY inner child.
I wasn’t good at being a child as a child. Circumstances caused me to grow up too fast and too cynical. It’s hard for me to have fun. But I’m working on it. Having children helped some, and now that I have a grandchild my goal is to be the fun she’s-kind-of-crazy-but-she-loves-me grandma.
Destined-To-Be-A-Musician (Musician Daughter and Musician-In-Law are already training him in the ways he should go) will be one year old in August. He lives a few states away but as he gets older will be able to visit more often so I cracked open my Grandma Closet and practiced playing.
What’s a Grandma Closet you say? It’s a closet (you could make it a storage tub or shelf, just some dedicated space) where I store toys and books and fun stuff for any kids that come to visit. I like kids to feel like my home is a safe, fun, interesting place to visit.
Over the years I’ve visited at homes (particularly certain relatives) where my children (who were of the quieter well-behaved variety to begin with) were afraid to breathe or sit on the furniture, had nothing to do, and basically felt unwelcome. I never wanted any children to feel like that in my home. I’ve stocked my Grandma Closet mostly with toys that survived my kids. Someday Destined-To-Be-A-Musician and other grandchildren (hint hint kids) will be fascinated to play around with the ‘ancient’ toys their parents played with as children.
Here’s some of the stuff I pulled out of the Grandma Closet. Luckily Keeper Hubby didn’t catch me and call the men in the white uniforms.
I got this felt house and family for Artist Daughter one Christmas. You can build the ‘rooms’ any way you want and pose the little felt dolls. They are so cute. Don’t know if they’re grandson material though.
This may be more like it. Duplos and Legos rock!
Remember these? With two daughters the Barbies seemed to multiply like rabbits and took a lot of wear and tear. These were the survivors.
Pinkerton was fascinated with everything and wanted to get in on the fun. Like most boys, he likes fast cars.
I broke open a coloring book and crayons. We didn’t have ‘salmon’ and ‘lavender’ when we were kids. Remember that pack of 8 big fat crayons you got at the beginning of each school year? Oops, is my age showing?
Some of the happier memories of childhood came back to me, as well as some of the wonderful times my munchkins and I had together. It was a fun afternoon stuck in the house. That inspiration, plus a fun writing prompt from Joe Bunting’s The Write Practice, helped me write a silly cat story featuring Pinkerton. I might have to save it to read together with DTBAM.