There are tufts of carded wool and thread remnants on the living room floor tonight. It's been a good day with much making for a friend's wee babe who will soon be arriving. This desire of ours to make most of the gifts we give can make some weeks feel full with just keeping up with the gift-giving in our lives. Our gifts are mostly pretty simple and we use materials that we already have on hand mostly. In this overloaded culture of ours, we figure that the gift is no longer about the thing itself so much as the energy behind it. (Actually at times we gift time instead of another thing, but that's another post.) Sometimes there has been so much love and attention on these gifts that they are hard to part with which leads to the inevitable making a second to keep.
The girls usually come up with the idea for the gift themselves. Their ideas are sometimes more complicated than I am feeling up to but we talk about possibilities and limiting factors and then we usually make a start. I did not work with my hands a lot as a child, not like Gunter, and so as an adult I am not totally at home with creative dexterity. I am willing and capable but I lack total ease. I watch Gunter and I appreciate the difference.
The girls work with their hands as much as possible; in the garden, outside at the workshop bench, grappling with constructing some art project or sitting with handwork. We like the idea that working with our hands stirs healthy brain development.
As our hands become strong and skillful so does our brain.
“The density of nerve endings in our fingertips is enormous. Their discrimination is almost as good as that of our eyes. If we don’t use our fingers, if in childhood and youth we become “finger-blind”, this rich network of nerves is impoverished-which represents a huge loss to the brain and thwart’s the individual’s all-around development.” - Matti Bergstrom, Swedish neurophysiologis.
I'm tired now. I haven't quite committed to making writing happen during the day but I am so enjoying being back in this space and writing again. Check out the link "A Child's Wish" under the good connections on the sidebar and be inspired.