Times are tough, right? With personal entertainment budgets suffering at the hands of student loan debt, rising food costs, and a thousand other matters, we’re forced to squeeze our entertainment budgets. I’ll tell you what my friends and I do: we make our own fun.
This is something kids do innately, and grown-ups seem to forget is possible. I remember childhood summers spent making lizard terrariums from milk cartons, doll fashion shows from scrap fabric, and (do not try this one at home) bike ramps from discarded lumber. The grown-up version of this game is more exciting because of the tools at your disposal: a wider scavenging range, maybe some power tools, full kitchen access.
Food is one of my favorite ways to make my own fun. Not too long ago, my friend and I faced off in an Iron Chef battle against our neighbor and his friend, with a secret ingredient (dark chocolate!) and all of us cooking only with what we had available in our kitchens. At the end of two hours, each team had to present three courses to our very lucky panel of invited judges. While the cooking raged at both houses, the guests ran back and forth down the block, peeking into kitchens. I did not win that battle, but it was a fabulous afternoon.
A few of my coworkers and I are in a three-person art club that does community-based events. We act as hostesses throwing free art productions. Creating a productive club is a great way to keep at something, and have lots of fun.
I challenge you to organize an unconventional event with your friends, family and loved ones. Get dressed to the nines and go to a very inexpensive restaurant or event. Throw a backyard Olympics and make each guest responsible for devising a game. Run a gourmet lemonade stand. Host a Youtube Karaoke party. Figure out new ways to spend time laughing with the people you love. Fun is important: it will revive you and help you feel more prepared to handle the less-fun stuff we inevitably face.
Over the past 18 months, in preparation for opening CMA’s new Center for Creativity (on Jan. 1, 2011), the entire education staff immersed ourselves in research on creativity, particularly what is necessary to cultivate creativity. Musings from the Center for Creativity is an opportunity for us to share our thoughts on this topic. Please share your views and resources with us, as well.
Art Speaks. Join the Conversation.
Jen Gillette, Creative Classroom Consultant