Thursday, December 29, 2011

Wrapping up 2011...and Figuring out my Bananas, Bunnies, and Clementines for 2012

The other day, my older daughter was wrapped up in her world of new, cool electronic gadgetry that found purchase in our home over the holidays. It's a tough balance as a parent trying to figure out how much screen time is "right" for an eleven year old. I am not in the camp that says a kid should just self-regulate. I think that children do not have enough foresight or awareness of the passage of time to do this.

(Of course, many adults are also unable to do this, but that's another story!)

Back to this story.

So, once again, I prepared to launch into a lecture. She rolls her eyes...and I shift gears. I go into the kitchen, grab a quart sized mason jar, a banana, a clementine, a pint's worth of dried beans, and a small stuffed bunny.

Now, perhaps you have seen the demo where they take a jar or a vase and have to stick a bunch of different sized balls (marbles, ping, pong balls, whatever). The challenge is to fill the jar with all of the objects. Most people trying this will put the smallest objects into the container. This doesn't work.  It's a metaphor for time management. I found this cute clip on youtube -- love that they use M&M's!

 So, I made my eleven year old attempt to stick the banana, the clementine, the bunny, and the beans into the jar. I told her that the banana was all the stuff she needed to learn. The clementine was the work she needed to do to grow her special talents and gifts. The bunny is joy and exercise. The beans are things like playing video games, listening to CDs, goofing off, email, etc...

She started by trying to stick in the banana first. It didn't fit.

Now, did I mention that I just randomly grabbed stuff? I mean, really, I just grabbed it without pre-measuring.

But I had a brilliant solution. "Yes. Sometimes you have really big things you need to fit into your day and they must be divided into manageable sizes." And I sliced the banana into three chunks.

"Try again."

This time, she placed the beans in first. The rest of the stuff wouldn't fit on top. "It won't work, Mom!" Eyes were rolling. Again.

So, I showed her. First you put in your banana chunks with your clementine. Then you slide the bunny in and fill in the beans around everything. The amazing thing is that it all fit perfectly -- I could not have squeezed in a single bean. Pretty good for randomness, right?

The eleven year old rolled her eyes some more. Her sister (age 5) found this really funny. "That bunny is all squished up with beans and bananas!"

The point was made. The banana and clementine were eaten by the five year old.

But what, you ask, does this have to do with Puppet-A-Day?

Well, it's all about time management, right? Gosh that's a hard one for us self-employed and creative types with kids. Or that's my excuse anyway. I want 2012 to be a year of big rocks (taking care of my family, my business, my creative self...) first. We'll see if we can get the blog back to a medium rock status...working on it!

And if you would like ro read more, I found the original story on another blog. Read away -- and Happy New Year!

With, of course, lots of M&M's filling in all the extra spaces.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

#102: Peek-A-Boo!

I saw this ad in a magazine and ripped it out. I've been staring at it for days...

Sorry it came out so yellowish -- my camera has been acting up. I can't get it to white-balance properly. (Grrr.) I really felt this needed to be made into a puppet...I have liked some of the past "baby inspired puppets" -- especially that creepy baby one!

This one is simpler. Just a rod that flips.


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Day #99: Filed for later...

Enough said!

P.S. Excuse the out-of-orderness....I had some upload issues!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Day #101: Not Vegetarian Friendly

You were warned. If you are a vegetarian, you can pretend this is some sort of tofu-tempeh treat. Our locavore friends will be happy to know that this if from Faith Farms and is from pastured pork.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Quick Update

You probably think I fell off the wagon again, but I have actually been studiously building puppets and photographing them for this blog. (Really!)

My fabulous red laptop, however, decided to go on strike (or something). She would not boot up. She turned out, but then I would click on my little icon and nothing would happen. For days now, I have been turning my computer on several times a day, crossing my fingers, saying a little prayer, sprinkling Holy Water, chanting, whatever. Today I must've done something different, because it actually worked.

So, for those of you who have been following along consider this an apology for the deluge of multiple post notices that are about to appear in your inbox.

Fingers crossed that my computer will continue to function for today!

P.S. I will be backdating the finished posts for continuity's sake. Then I think I will pick a week and call it "Summer School," where I can really catch up!

P.S. Update to my update: I've been trying to upload video clips...blogger has been slow and uncooperative. So things are taking much longer than I would like. My apologies!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Day #97 and #98: The Magic of Velcro (two birds, one stone)

Technically speaking, I made four puppets, not just two. Well, maybe even more than that. We had birthday parties this weekend for good friends of my youngest daughter. I could've just gone out and got them something at the store, but I really wanted to do this instead. (I hope they like them!)

A few years ago, I took a workshop and learned about this fabulous velcro-compatible fabric. The "hard" side of the velcro will stick to if you make a plain puppet...

Tabula rasa.

With a little bit of Velcro, you have endless possibilities!

Everybody loves pirates, right?

Lovely braids!

More pensive!

You'd be mad, too, if the other puppet got the pink braids that are longer!
The eyes, mouths, eye patches, hair, and whatnot are all removable and switchable. Huzzah! I hope they have fun with their toys! There should be many adventures!

So, for those of you who hang out here...feel free to chime in and let me know if I am cheating by calling this "two" works.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Day #96: A Little Bit Nuts

I was finishing up at the studio and contemplating what I could do for today's post. I was thinking about all the materials at the studio. Wondering what I could use. I looked around...

A bunch of nuts, bolts, nails?

So I came up with an idea that really didn't work out. I took a wingnut and tried to make an object puppet. I wanted the nut to be like a fish fin on a bolt. I tried, but it didn't really work like I wanted to.

But I think an important part of any process is coming up with ideas that do not work. Ideas that are, well, bad. Before you can be good at something, you need an opportunity to be bad at it. Brainstorming is mostly finding bad ideas in search of a route to a better idea.

As you can see, it didn't work.

But there are many more ideas out there!