Saturday, September 12, 2009

Fire And Rain

Our plans for a Saturday morning yard sale were upended by a rain storm. Not just a drizzle, or mist. But a real storm, with thunder and lightning. I can probably count on my hands the number of those I've seen those in the 10 years I've lived in the Bay Area. And so, we were in full improvisation mode.

Kalian, always the curious one, wanted to go for a walk around the block just to see what it was like to walk in the rain under an umbrella. (see picture above).

When we got back, I needed to find something to amuse them. Fortunately, I came across a listing for an open house at The Crucible. I had always wanted to visit and what could be better than a free open house? The Crucible is a big, industrial art studio where artists forge big metal sculptures, blow fantastic glass objects, and in general build all sorts of inspiring, funky things. It's one of the great Bay Area-Burning Man type places that makes me appreciate living here.

So I took Liam and Kalian down for a few hours and it was as good as I'd hoped. Liam walked right in and exclaimed, "This place is awesome." There were some people blowing glass in a big furnace when we first entered.

Liam and Kalian both spent about 30 minutes making picture frames and magnets out of glass fragments:

Then it was on to making etchings in sand plates:

And then clay:

Liam made an elaborate clay sculpture involving an alien and a swimming pool with diving board:

It's great to see Liam so engaged. For so long, he was the kid who refused to do any art-related activities. I never wanted to press him to hard, but I remember being so disappointed any time I tried to nudge him to try a craft of some kind and he ran screaming in the other direction. He's always been very creative and it's great to seem him finally developing the patience to create the things in his mind. Earlier in the day, he staged a whole play behind the couch using action figures and playmobile people.

So the Crucible was a hit, and from there we drove the Berkeley Y for an hour of swimming before heading home to watch (gulp) Tinkerbelle. It was Kalian's turn to pick for movie night, and she had been dying to watch this godawful DVD that someone gave her. And yes, it was horrific.

But as days without a plan go, this was a great one. Tomorrow, we've got a regular family meditation gathering which will fill most of the day.

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