Sunday, January 5, 2014

Art in the house

Anyone will say that art comes in many forms and in many different degrees of expertise.  From a finger-painting on a fridge to an orchestral symphony, it's all art.

Remember how I said my kids had artistic bones, but they don't show them when it comes to gingerbread houses?  Yeah, that. This week showed a different side.  Jonathon finally dug into his project box and put together the bat house that's been waiting for years.  I'm not even sure Amman has bats.  I know there are bats in Ajloun as we saw them the marshmallow-roasting night, zipping about just on the edge of the light auras, doing their best munching of mosquitoes and other insects.  I enjoy watching bats.  I think they're cool.  I didn't care too much for the red-eyed insane looking bats that would crash in our yard in Togo or dive into the guard shack and try to eat the guard, and then screamed for hours after the guard beat them to the ground with a baton.  Those bats were scary.  The fruit bats, on the other hand, with their massive wings spans and sunset flights of millions against the sky, that was gorgeous.  Every night they would blanket the sky on their way to the mango groves.  I guess the mango farmers weren't too thrilled with that. But even so, I do like bats.  I especially like that the little insectivores eat mosquitoes.  Some of them are kind of cute too.  Like little flying mice.

Where was I?  Oh right, bat house.  Jonathon put one together.  Now to find a place outdoors.  Usually they are placed high in a tree or on the outside of a house or barn.  Maybe we'll just hang on to it until our next post (where ever that may be)?  At least we should wait until summer.  I'm sure whatever bats there may be have high-tailed it out of Amman until after the winter.

Now if I can get him back to finish his latch hook and Warhammer characters.  Anyone remember latch hook?  It's a quiet, fine motor project, which is probably why he doesn't touch it for weeks on end.  Jonathon is more a full-body kid when it comes to choosing an activity. Sitting quietly is not his forte and projects that take careful attention and a lot of care take him quite a while to complete. through fits and starts.

Anyway, the bat house is put aside for now and hopefully the latch hook will come out and get done along with the Warhammer characters.  I'm still working on my first knitting project, the blanket that will never ever ever be finished.  Ever.  I remember posting the photo of me working on it at a concert.  At Saunders Middle School.  In Virginia.  Two years ago.  I have an excuse and it's a good one... I only work on knitting during the winter.  So you see, I really only have about 3 months a year I can plug along on it.  It's not my fault, blame the nice Amman weather.

You've already seen the wall art Katherine is slowly working on.  Another piece we have on our wall now is a way nifty wooden plaque that looks a little like this.  Actually it looks a lot like this.  Yeah, it looks exactly like this.  It's, um, ours.  I think it's fabulous.  I didn't make it, but another Foreign Service family does so I ordered it from them.  Nifty thing is it comes with extra boards, pre-painted, with markers to write in out next tours.  It's very very cool and makes me smile every time I see it.  Manila seems so long ago.

What I really wanted to show off today though was this lovely piece.  Rebecca worked on it for weeks, including over the holiday, and it's now ready to go back to school for her art teacher to see.  This is why I like when my kids to take art classes at school:  I get way cool pieces to put up on the walls.  They mark the kids' progress in a very different way than a simple photograph ever could.  You can see a little of their heart, a peek into how they see the world, a glimpse into a small part of their soul.

These pieces make me smile more than anything else.


  1. Is it possible to get contact info for who makes/sells those "home" plaques??

  2. Great job on both the bat house and the art project picture! I too would love to know contact info on the home plaques -- great idea!

  3. Jeff Austin in my friends on FB. If you need an email address I can ask him.

  4. Thanks...I would appreciate his contact info.

  5. Please email me at mehopper@gmail and I'll send you his email address.