About once a week, I head to the dollar store to pick up a coloring book for Ellie. She loves to color and I love that this activity usually keeps her occupied and out of my hair for a little while. This past week, Ellie decided she wanted a blank pad of paper, instead of a coloring book. I tried to persuade her towards the care bare and disney princess books, fearing that her choice would not entertain her for long, but she was insistent on having to have the blank pad of paper. To my surprise, this blank canvas has opened up her imagination and creativity more than any of the other coloring books I have purchased for her.
She started by drawing pictures of her friends and family members and then asked for help in learning how to write theirs names above their pictures. Then she moved out of the world she knew and started creating elaborate scenes from her imagination while narrating to me what it was that she was drawing. (Extremely helpful since, as it turns out, a duck looks almost identical to a killer shark chasing down a swarm of jelly fish) I found myself engaged in watching the creativity flow from my child's mind through her crayons.
Watching my daughter, I have learned that kids need so little to let their imagination's take flight. In a world where everyone is trying to have the biggest and the best of everything, I think we all should take the time to simply enjoy a blank piece of paper and a box of crayons.