Tuesday, June 2, 2009

The Yeller Thing

As I mentioned in a previous blog post, I spent my entire adult life trying to become a mom so that I could be the proud recipient of some macaroni art. I soon learned that the old adage "be careful what you wish for" is true. I've got art aplenty. The Louvre has nothing on me. Well, if the Louvre were filled to the rafters with construction paper, glue, and glitter, that is.

My daughter brought this home from school last week. Just in case your eyes are not transmitting the proper information to your brain: it's a piece of paper that has been crumpled up and then glued to a popsicle stick. I turned it over in my hands a few times.

"What is it, sweetie?" I asked.

"It's a yeller thing," she replied, with a look that told me that she was losing patience with my woeful lack of intelligence and/or observation skills. She held the crumpled paper to her mouth and yelled, "Hey, Gretchen!" into it. Lucky Gretchen. The day that A claimed Gretchen as "her" dog was either the best or the worst day of Gretchen's life, depending on how you look at it.

My best guess is that the project started out as some sort of megaphone, but something clearly went awry somewhere between the design and production phases (and it definitely never made it to the Quality Assurance team). The real question, though, is what do I do with a "yeller thing?"

As a project one weekend, we assembled and painted a wooden art board for the kid's room. It has a bunch of clothespins poking out of it, so as new artwork comes through the door, I usually hang it there. When that becomes full, some of the art moves to a Rubbermaid tote in the basement. Many of the projects that come home from school are pretty cute, such as a spider made out of a paper plate. However, many times she brings home a sheet of paper that is hosting a single swirl of blue marker. And that's it. Occasionally she'll even hand me an objet d'art that has some other kid's name on it. Yet it's clear that she expects me to treat all of the "art" with great reverence and respect.

What's a mom to do? Surreptitiously syphon some of it out of the house and into the recycling bin? Will she be in therapy as an adult? I wonder if Whistler's mother had this problem.

8 comments:

KJH33 said...

My mother Kept the "good" stuff-- and syphoned often, upon moving into our new house recently getting a small box of my old things was cute-- we syphoned kept the funnier things and pitched the rest. T's mother KEPT IT ALL- we recieved 5 rubbermades and 2 garbage bags-- after 5 hours of irritation we looked around at the piles of "blue swirl quality" and deemed her crazier than a bed bug keeping the laminated "turkey place mats" and pitched 99% of it.

Advice from a younger couple :) Don't keep it ALL we don't want it in 20 years! Go through it when different stages are hit and weed heavily!

Laurie Green said...

Someone suggested to me to take photos of the less awesome stuff and keep a copy of that instead.

I always think how lucky A is to have you as a mom. Not only are you awesome, you are raising her in the company of Boxers. Now that's great parenting!

Steph K said...

About once a month, I tell my daughter that I need new art for my wall at work. We go through the piles at home and I "take some to work". I'm sure my reservation in hell has been confirmed for this.

Kira said...

Oh, I like the take it to work idea! My mom saved all my artwork, and then sometime in my early twenties I inherited it all. I threw out everything but my journal! I went to a Catholic school, and my favorite journal entry read as follows:
"Holy Mary mother of God."
And that was it. It was illustrated though. I'm thinking of having it framed.
Keep the good stuff, turf the rest!

Laurie Green said...

Just to make this dilemma more difficult for you, I should say that my oldest daughter is a kindergarten teacher and and my youngest daughter is an art major and they actually were glad I kept their art projects. They get a real kick out of looking at them now.

Anonymous said...

I have some friends that scan in and save it on their computer. That way it's never really gone. I may go this route soon. Katie has a tote that's pretty school from her first year of preschool and she only went 2 days a week!

Rachel said...

I get a three ring binder with a clear vinyl pocket from the mega office store each school year. On the computer I choose graphics that best represent what said child is into at the being of the school year- soccer, art, etc and add the school name, teacher name, grade , etc.

This goes on their closet shelf with a box that collects various artwork, test papers, progress and report cards, etc.

We go through the box at Christmas, Easter break and end of the school year and put our favorites in the binder, some in sheet protectors, others get a three hole punch right in.

We also add the class picture and a couple of scrapbook pages of special things that happened at school that year- the christmas show, field trips, special assemblies, prizes won, etc. That way that have a keepsake of each year and I don't drown in papers.

The oldest will graduate high school next year and all of his keepsake binders fit in 2 office boxes.

I also have framed some of my favorite artwork and love notes that they have given to me over the years and hung them around the house.

The kids like to take them out and look at them every now and then. We didn't save just the "A" papers but kept some where the teacher put comments that kind of reflected where the child was during that time like- "Must pay better attention", "Needs to follow directions" etc. It's all kind of funny. I know one of my boys will probably never be the kind of guy that reads directions through and one will always have his head a little bit in the clouds.

Anonymous said...

Can I say I actually laughed out loud at this...too damn funny!!!