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I love art. I love my kids. I love it when my kids do art. Or so the theory goes.

But I hate cleaning up after “art time”. It makes me bonkers. And therefore, I rarely let them paint. Unless it’s outside and I can hose them and the grass off afterwards. And then they can air dry.

We did some painting and print making last August and they did these beautiful greeny-bluey potato prints. Then Little m decided that it would look better to paint the potato before using it to print. Little c decided it was much more fun to just shmear the whole thing around. And As I was watching them, I was kicking myself (yet again) that we don’t do this more often. What better way is there to learn what the color blue is than to have your hand covered in blue paint?

I don’t lack for ideas, but some days (like today) I lack for energy and the impetus to get the ball rolling. I personally believe that kids need free-form art expression for everything from math skills to science experiments to emotional outlets. Being a musician, I want them to sing while they do it, if they like. By art, I also don’t mean just a colouring book or page, although they have their uses.

I’m not a neat freak, but I’ve got to get over this art=mess business. It’s antithetical to my belief system and makes me a crappy mom. Or at least a mom who hates washing towels…