Thursday, January 20, 2011

Do it yourself Clowning

So for this months' book club we have been working on Clowning.  "Clowning?" you say, "it is January, why clowning?"  Well, it is January, that's why.  Every year when January rolls around I am pretty tired of grey trees and grey skies.  In December it is okay but once the  Christmas season is over, I am pretty well done with old man winter.  So when contemplating this months' book club I decided to go with something cheery, bright, colorful; hence, clowns. 

Week one we read Roarr Calder's Circus.  I love this book, it is an absolute riot.  Maira Kalman takes Alexandar Calder's wire and twine sculptures and tells a circus tale that had my kids rolling.  What  a fantastic book.  The art was wonderful and engaging and while I didn't have time this go around I thought it would be a wonderful spring board for an art project of 3d sculpturing using found material.  Also you can add in this video, Alexandar Calder uses his figurines to perform a circus! So fun. 

After we read Calder's we got to work on some Tempra Clowns (idea came from  They were so much fun.  I gave them each a 12x18 sheet of white construction paper and set out muffin tins with the basic six plus black and some brushes.  The kids used pencil to sketch out their clowns with me reminding them to draw large and giving them a lesson in facial proportions.  Then they filled in their clowns with the tempra and once it was dry to the touch went back and did the outlines with a fine brush and some black paint.  The clowns came out so unique and very clowny looking.  The paintings will be used to decorate a wall in the library later in the month.  Here are a few of my young artists' paintings

Okay, so that was week one of DIY Clowning.  I'll share everything else we've done in upcoming posts.  So check back here for a four sessions of hands on clowning activities.

Talk to you soon, LT

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Radical~ The Experiment

Boy boy, so the book by David Platt will knock you right between the eyes. 
Well, maybe not you, but it sure did me. I've been a christian for a while; a church going, praise song singing, devotion reading christain. Radical will change that. 

First of all what is the purpose of Church going, praise song singing, and devotion reading?  Is the purpose to glorify God, to become a better person, to have support in this wonderful thing called life?  I thought so.

According to Radical, not really.  All that stuff is great and all; but what really glorifies God is when his church (the people who follow him; not the building) sacrifice themselves (lives, comfort, interests, etc.) to take his gospel to the nations.  When they care for the orphans, the widows, the poor, the lost, the helpless and hopeless then the business of God is being done. 

In my life how many hours have been given to God for his business?  How many times have I thrown change at the Salvation Army and walked into a store to purchase luxuries for myself?  How often have I bought clothes for myself or my children and patted myself on the back for passing on what we couldn't or wouldn't use anymore. 

As I look at my past, I am dissappointed by  my negligence to those in need.  I am dissappointed that even when I gave, I gave second rate not first string. I can make it to the library, the grocery store, the homeschool group but not the food pantry; for that I don't have time. I am ashamed of leaving my Bible, neglected on the nightstand day after day after day.  Some in this world are killed for the Word of God. I have all the freedom in the world to read it, digest it, memorize it and pass it around and I do nothing with it. I've regarded it as a chore that should be done but like the laundry it is often left to the last minute and shoved off til tomorrow. I pray when I need something, or when I want to praise God for some little blessing or when someone asks me to, short and sweet lest I start to act like the pharisees with 'empty words' right?  How about, I just don't like taking the time.  I've done all this with the idea that God loves Me, Jesus died for Me, I've lived a pretty 'good' life and Accepted Believed and Confessed, I am going to HEAVEN.  That is where all of us Christians want to be right?

God is more. Jesus is Lord.  The Spirit has power.  Heaven won't matter if no one else is there with me.

So what do I do about it.  Let it happen!!!  Stop staying comfortable.  Stop being apathetic.  Stop being flat out lazy. 

God nudges and whispers and slaps me over the head.  I fight and shout and kick and scream or worst yet, I turn just to where he is not in my line of vision cross my arms and pretend he's not there and I can't hear him.

I'm done. So here is to repentence. Here is to more than willingness but movement. Here is where the direction of my days changes from me centered to him centered. 

Now this post is getting pretty long and is looking more smattery than I like but it's where I'm at right now.  I'm going to hit the publish button before I chicken out.  LT