Monday Morning Making: A Lesson About Being Prepared


Over the weekend we bought an itty bitty pumpkin at the grocery store. It’s a little early to decorate for Halloween, but pumpkins in their whole form are perfectly appropriate for fall, and they’re cute, so why not?

painting pumpkins
The Bit’s pumpkin from Halloween 2011.

Last year I let the Bit paint a pumpkin, so that’s what she wanted to do again.

This morning. After she got dressed for school.

Luckily, by the time she made it upstairs, pumpkin in hand, she decided she wanted to “paint” it with markers. I suggested a compromise of the paint brush pens (see Paint Brush Pens Pack set of 5 that’s an affiliate link by the way, thanks so much!), which would give it a painty look without the mess of paint but be a little more fun than the markers (she eventually used them, too).


She was game, so I quickly cleared off her art table, threw a piece of construction paper on top and let her grab the markers off the shelf while I collected the paint pens.

painting pumpkin
Working hard on her painted pumpkin.

She drew a little bit on each segment of the pumpkin.

paintbrush pens
Painting a pumpkin with paint brush pens.

It didn’t take long before we’d exhausted all the colors of paint brush pens we had and moved on to the markers.

Within about 10 minutes of starting, she declared the pumpkin finished (for now anyway).

painted pumpkin
The finished painted pumpkin.

And after a quick stop to wash hands, go potty, wash hands again and do a puzzle, we were off to school!

What Did We Learn?

To me this episode is a great illustration of why it’s so important to have dedicated spaces for art and craft activities and to at least have a somewhat organized space (I’m working on that!) where you can find the things you need quickly.

Because she has a table in the playroom for these sorts of projects, with a cart behind that holds a lot of the supplies, we were able to get this project going within minutes of her suggesting it. She was able to do what she wanted to do without waiting around for me to dig out the supplies she wanted (which would have been the case when she was doing art at the kitchen table) and she was able to leave the project and know it won’t be disturbed during the day.

If I wanted to clean up, all I would have to do is put the pens and markers back in their cups. The construction paper didn’t even really get dirty, so we can use it again as a cover or for a different art project.

When she said she wanted to paint before school I felt a bit of dread, but it turned out to be a really nice way to start the day because everything was where we needed it to be and easy to set up.

Do you have a dedicated art space for yourself or your kids? How would you react if your kid wanted to paint right before school? I’d love to hear your thoughts and tricks for encouraging creativity with your kids!

Thanks for visiting, commenting and sharing.

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