Wednesday, April 20, 2011

X is for X-acto knife

I have never been a crafty person.  My hands are not crafty. This was something of a problem for me considering who my parents were. 

My father grew up in what he called an Okie Stomp.  Everyone was dirt poor, and made everything stretch to the last bit of usefulness.  As a result he could weld, build a house including electrical and plumbing, make about anything out of wood, build cars from the tires up, fix toys to bikes to watches and everything in between.  He was also artistic.  His wooden boxes and tables and toys are gorgeous, his wood stoves delightful, his stained glass intricate, his photography sublime, his painting...well he wasn't so good at that but he had fun.

My mother was the true artist in the household.  Her oil paintings were good enough for her to sell many of them.  She can sew or mend anything and is also a quilter.  She can knit, bake and grow plants and trees of every type.  She can also hunt, fish, gut and preserve her own catch, and play a mean game of cards, but that's another blog.

As my brother and I grew up my parents taught us whatever we wanted to learn.  I can change a tire and my brother can sew on a button equally.  It soon became apparent, however, that while he was able to learn many things about making stuff, I lacked the same artistic spirit that lived in my parents.

What is it that makes an artist?  I'm not sure.  My parents and my brother are all artists in their own fields, whilst I am...well I'm just not.  Oh I can sew, and quilt, and paint if its something simple.  I can cook food people will eat, and shape wood into something useful.  But everything I make lacks that inner spark that turns a jewelry box into something people are proud to display in their homes, or bake a cake people are still talking about 10 years later.  Or so I thought for a long time....and I should note that my feelings of inadequacy are entirely my own.  Both my parents were always encouraging my brother and I to try things and praising our efforts.

What does this have to do with x-acto knives do you ask?  X-acto knives are used in scrapbooking!  And that is my art.  It turns out I did have that creative spark, it just wasn't where I expected it to be (as often as this happens you'd think I'd stop looking for things and let Deity show me instead!).  I've been scrapping since two tiny little girls came in to my life 13 years ago.  My best friends baby Ally, and my hubby's baby Samantha.  Yes, the Samantha I am now proud to call my own daughter.

As it turns out trying to be proficient in the same areas as my parents wasn't such a good choice.  My talents and skills lay elsewhere.  I'm just glad that I stumbled on to something that made me feel creative and fulfilled, instead of continuing to struggle feeling second rate.  As much as I want to I will never build a car, or paint a gorgeous sun set.  But I can take pictures of both and make a wonderful page, and tell a neat story, and leave that as my legacy to my children.

What are you good at?  What creative spark have you nurtured today? 

Be Blessed Friends -=)

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