It is 8:30 pm on a Thursday evening.
In a panic, one of my daughters comes to me because the project she is making just isn't working....something about glue, things not sticking, ripples in the paper - it's not clear in the emotion of the moment. The assignment is due tomorrow.
It is too late to go to the arts and crafts store to get new supplies. She is not satisfied with the supplies she has. The advice I am giving is going in one ear and out the other. If you have daughters you understand how that happens when they are in a highly emotional state.
So....out comes creative genius hat.
This hat is not necessarily creative in the sense that it bestows amazing artistic talent.
This hat is creative because it allows me to offer suggestions in a creative way that help her through the drama of the moment. It allows me to guide her in a direction that will help her accomplish her goal, but doing it in a way so that she thinks it is all coming from her own ideas. It helps me make suggestions, offer alternatives and present options that she can choose from to move her from panic to completion.
Now the funny thing about this hat is that I actually have three of them - one for each daughter. It has taken me many years to get the sizing and look of these hats just right - sometimes they still need adjusting. Each daughter responds differently to these hats. If I am wearing the wrong hat for the daughter I am working with, I go from creative genius to creative flop!
Time to open the hat box - wish me luck!