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Kelly: Working Through Creative Mama Frustrations

So, we’re all creative mama’s here, right? We create, in whatever form, and we try to instill that creative juice in our children.  So what happens when those two worlds collide and you throw shoes?

My girls love to create art. I’m happy about that. We create art together all the time—at my art bench, at their art bench, on the side porch, on vacation—and they are developing a nice little talent. But after I checked my email this morning, I came downstairs to find that Sarah had broken one of our number one house rules, yet again:  Art supplies do not come upstairs; they stay downstairs in the play room/art room/room that does not contain furniture that we actually care about and would like to keep looking presentable. Caught your interest yet? So what art supply did my darling curly red-headed child bring up stairs?  Oh, only the most permanent of art supplies…that famous permanent marker we all call Sharpie. Yep, Sharpie….nice little Sharpie lines and squiggles drawn on my two-month-old, $3,000 Pottery Barn stone-colored sectional. When I made this particular furniture selection, I even talked with the salesperson about which fabric would be most kid friendly and went with the canvas twill at her suggestion.

I’m trying to find the humor is this situation and am failing miserably.  Sarah selected a hot pink Sharpie.  There is no hot pink in the room. Perhaps if she had gone with the orange to match the orange floral rug or bring out the orange in the terracotta walls…or the green to compliment the weathered green coffee table…or the aqua blue that shows up in my accent pillows…or heck! even black would have at least matched the piano!  Nope, she chose hot pink. Now I will say this is not the first time she has demonstrated her Sharpie love. There’s been a wall and a kitchen cabinet, and most distressing up until this point, my mom’s antique needlepoint footstool, which now says “I like Ike.” I don’t know who Ike is unless Sarah’s been channeling Dwight D. Eisenhower in her sleep.

So back to the throwing shoes part of the program. Yep, I threw shoes…I slammed doors…I even uttered a few choice expletives. I don’t do that often—lose my temper—but I did this morning, and I’m sure it wasn’t pretty.  Granted there are worse things in life to deal with. No one here is battling cancer or suffering from a heart attack. It’s just a couch (though I will repeat it is a brand new $3,000 couch that I haven’t even finishing paying for yet since I took advantage of that one-year no-interest financing offer). So what do you do when this happens at your house? We’re having a garage sale tomorrow. In it, I had hoped to sell our ten-year-old couch that was replaced by our now Sharpie-decorated sectional; Sarah took the scissors to that couch. Maybe I just need to put it back upstairs.

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. suzannerevy #

    Oh my… yes… this has happened, and it’s amazing how an artfully placed throw blanket can help with just such things. I have a lovely chair I bought at Domain (before kids) that now has a Cy Twombley style abstract work on it applied in.. you guessed it… black sharpie.

    I’m forever covering it artfully with the throw blankets.

    Oh.. and I had a couch that the kids scissored up, and utterly destroyed. (Also from Domain, purchased before kids with the chair). Last spring, I couldn’t stand the state of the poor couch, and almost dumped it. I went so far as to purchase another sofa for the room, but it was such a cheap sofa, I changed my mind before it was delivered. I figured I’d be doing this again in a few years, so instead, I decided to reupholster the older couch. Structurally, it was still very sound, and even though it cost more, I felt better not adding a couch to the garbage pile!!


    July 13, 2009
  2. Sharpies happen!

    i wrote much more on your blog of the same at the happy shack, as you know, but i think a time will come when you’ll have a $3k chuckle about it. it will go into the family stories vault as ‘remember the time sarah sharpied the new sofa?’

    July 13, 2009
  3. We were very lucky here… while I was writing my most recent blog, Sam snuck downstairs and covered the white fridge and white kitchen cabinets in red (dry erase) marker. I can only imagine how you felt because I felt it too up to the point I realized it was actually removable!

    July 13, 2009
  4. thanks for the sympathy ladies! miranda asked me for a picture and i told her i was trying to pretend it didn’t happen and had already flipped all the cushions. luckily i was at least able to do that. denial at its finest my google search for “getting sharpie out of fabric” did not really come up with any suggestions that actually worked.

    July 13, 2009
  5. LOL…you’d better put those Sharpies under lock and key before she gets the “good” sides of those cushions too…There’s no restraining a creative woman on a bender!!

    July 13, 2009
  6. Sharpies …very effective…so innocently used though.However totally understand the shoe throwing etc moment. Very hard even though u bought them their OWN brushes, paints and pastels etc. Costing very little.
    Yours stuff…seems so they are.. expensive and better they can’t find theirs any more.
    ( Even though there was a bulk value pack bought, that could’ve kitted out a local art store!!!)) Arrh
    Then there’s my Jewelry bench..!!!And they wanna be like Mama.( Especially when she’s not looking.) Let’s not mention lost $30 hammers, filing in bits of silver I was using, oh, pliers do a million thing I ‘didn’t know about. Sigh.
    (99/100 they are pretty good.) It’s just that 1 time they are very effective creative beings!

    July 13, 2009

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