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Paint Party

(or, how to make an angry sunflower)

Last weekend I went on an adventure. My daughter, Christa, called me to see if I was free Saturday from 1:30 to 4:30. Gotta be honest and say I figured she needed us to keep Lincoln for a while (which would have been fine).  But no. She refused to tell me what we were doing, where we were going. I begged for a hint, but no. Apparently this was a hill to die on ….

Saturday arrived and I must admit I was excited. I’m pretty good at figuring stuff like this out, but Saturday I was still  completely clueless! Unsettling. Disturbing. But mostly – excited to spend the time doing … something together.

1:30 arrived, and I got this text from her:

So I scurried out the door – it was clearly an order – and was happy to find Lexi in the car! Hint #1 right?

Then we stopped at Quik Trip because Rooster Booster. And snacks.  So far so good! Christa kept hurrying us along … “move it, we’re late!”

So ok, Lexi + snacks and drinks – I came to a conclusion. Did you?

And I was right – she turned into the movie theater parking lot. Ha! Win for me, I figured it out! Is that what you guessed?


She turned left instead of right, into a strip center parking lot, and now I’m REALLY confused.

C’mon! We’re late! (We weren’t.)

And we walked into a place called Pinot’s Palette. For a paint party. Oh no. My heart sank and my knees went weak – I can’t paint! Or draw. Or anything in that realm.

But wait. My companions are blood of my blood. And neither of them has a lick of artist in them. Why are we here?!

Then I turned and saw Christa grinning. Like ear to ear cheesy grinning. I wail, “I can’t paint!” Response: “I know! This is going to be hilarious!”

Seriously. Let’s call the whole thing off.

The helper lady showed us to our places and I started to feel a bit better. (A bit.) Here’s what we found:

(Aren’t they cute??)

Three seats together but alone (perfect for introverts), a canvas with part of a sunflower drawn on it in pencil, and a plate of paint. (A SUNFLOWER!! My absolute favorite.)

You’ve got to be kidding me. I cannot do this.

But the instructor was really good! As Christa and Lexi were moving along so nicely, somehow one of my (yellow) petals was suddenly brown. Like baby po… nevermind but it looked terrible.

(Also Christa kept trying to help me but it wasn’t helping at all. Lexi, on the other hand, looked sorta angry. Both of us asked her if she was ok at some point, to which she replied, “Yeah this is just my face.” She was in the ZONE.)

Just then the nice helper lady came by to hand out more paint and napkins. She stopped dead behind me, grabbed my canvas and said, “Let me see if there’s any way to salvage this.”

Christa’s is on the left, Lexi’s on the right, mine is … missing. I can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard.

She brought it back, sort of salvaged, and told me how to finish fixing it when it was dry. She also instructed me on how to clean a paintbrush. Oh.

That was the point at which I stopped following directions and winged it. It was a lot more fun, and as I quit paying attention to the instructions I kind of got in a zone or something and then it was finished. I created an angry sunflower! Impossible? Clearly not.

But you know what’s weird? I actually love it.

We had a wonderful time together, and I think it’s so fun that she found the perfect thing, including the sunflower! And that my crazy busy mom-of-4 daughter decided to enjoy taking me waaay out of my comfort zone.

(I asked her later how in the world she found out about this, she said she was online looking at monster truck tickets and one thing led to another … what?! Major rabbit trail there!)

There’s a lesson for me here, and I need to pay attention to it. Following even a skilled instructor’s directions does not always turn out the happiest result. Sometimes you just gotta wing it.

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