A Family Art Date

It’s so easy to get into ruts. Every area of our lives is susceptible to the mundane. We can become so stuck on foods, routines, and shops that we begin to lose the excitement we once held for those things. In Ohio, the winter time can become a season of over-repeated family date nights. There are only so many things you can do in the great indoors with a toddler. When all else fails my husband and I resort to traveling to a mall so that we can walk, talk, and enjoy time together with the promise of a play area trip if our daughter is on her best behavior.

As much fun as a trip to one of the area’s malls can be this past weekend we felt the need to branch out and try something new. The temperatures were cooler and the prospect of flurries lingered in the forecast. It was a weekend for indoor activities, but we were so over the idea of spending another Friday night window shopping and supervising our daughter in a sea of rambunctious children.

After a quick Google search I found an Art and Clay Cafe in a neighboring town. Our daughter is absolutely in love with arts and crafts so it seemed like a trip that would be right up her alley. Indeed, the new adventure was well worth it.

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The first thing we did once we entered the eccentric cafe was browse their shelves of ceramics. My daughter chose a bird ornament and a balloon-shaped dog. I wanted to create a decorative piece for the house so I chose a plate. My husband wanted to try his hand at painting intricate details so he selected to paint a ceramic wizard. This also makes more sense if you know my husband and his extreme addiction to Harry Potter. (He did grow up in England in the 1990’s so you can’t really blame him. That was Potter country back then.)

With our ceramic selections made we made our way to the paint table. Each of us filled a plate of vibrant colors and then took a seat where the baristas served us coffee and juice while we worked.

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I’ve forgotten how therapeutic painting can be. It’s been years since I just sat down and painted. All three of us were in such a zone as we focused on the projects at hand. I had completely forgotten about the nerve-wrecking Active Shooter Training that had happened in my school that afternoon. Our daughter had watched a program the week prior about mixing colors to make others so she really enjoyed experimenting with her colors. Somehow in the process of mixing multiple colors she manufactured the most beautiful shade of purple. She used this color to coat her dog and used so many other colors on the bird piece she worked on.

For nearly three hours our entire family worked on our individual projects while talking, laughing, and sipping on cafe drinks. Several people stopped by our table to compliment our daughter on her use of the paintbrush and her impeccable behavior. Art really is one of her gifts. As parents we have tried to embrace this talent. (I admit sometimes we embrace this interest with a little of selfishness. Arts and crafts are really the only thing she will sit down to do. If we want peace and quiet we give her paper and markers and she is occupied for a good bit of time.)

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When we finished with our projects we turned them in to the front desk. The pieces were queued for the kiln. The Art and Clay Cafe take all pieces and place a finishing gloss on them before heating them up in the kiln. Upon check out we received a ticket and a pick-up date. Next Saturday our beautiful creations will be done and ready to be brought home. I look forward to picking up our masterpieces.

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It was a unique Friday night. A family date for the books. We really liked the Art and Clay Cafe.

The Ameri Brit Mom

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