For all my good intentions, I guess I never did manage to blog my way through the school year. Let's suffice it to say it was awesome for the homeschoolers, a nightmare at the middle school, a mixed bag at the high school but we've all grown and changed.
In spite of the long hiatus, something is tugging at me to keep on keeping on with the blog within the general creative fog that seems to waft through my brain most days. I know I should be focused on the kids (well, maybe sometimes I can give myself a few minutes) but this school year turned out to be a lot about, well, me. I've been pining away as an artist and desperately wanting my children to have what I had as a kid - a super-charged creative environment in which to think, learn, BE (thanks Mom and Beth!).
With the challenging kids out of the loop during the day, I turned my attentions to fostering the creative in the home schooled ones. I have to admit, I started my Big Push on Ben who is already ripe for the picking with his own flair for the dramatic and a shared love of all things theater. I started an improvisational troupe for him and his friends and together we spent the year learning how to do improvised scenes. I threw myself into the production of King Lear in which Ben performed as Edmund and I arranged for regular trips with my teens to see the Baltimore Improv Group perform. And that's where the bug bit me in the butt. After watching hours and hours of youtube videos of various improv artists and comics, as well as Netflix and Tivo reruns of Whose Line is It Anyway and becoming a BIG groupie, I realized this is my destiny. I've often joked with Tad and the kids about becoming a stand-up comic but I suddenly started taking myself seriously. I love comedy. I adore it. I love making people laugh, and I love having a place to hide at the end of the day where everything is funny and the un-funny things melt away. Before I knew what I was doing, I signed up Tad and myself for classes with BIG - first Introduction to Improv and now a few classes into Intermediate Characters. Tad is really good at this one, I find it extremely challenging.
I'm not exactly sure how all this is going to go. I am simultaneously working my way through a comedy text book on developing a stand-up routine. I must say I am much more attracted to improvisational forms, though, and really would like some combination of stand-up and sketch comedy to be my destination. I'm 41 years old and I've just figured out what I want to be when I grow up. Yay me.
As a bonus, I stopped to look around recently and realized the rest of my kids have been following right behind me. Andrea and Miriam have been making beautiful creations in their school art class. I was so thrilled at how far out of her artistic box Andrea had come that I sent the art teacher a glowing email stating if they had no other classes in their school experience, I would be content. Philip recently had to choose between History and Drama and guess what he chose? That's my boy - not that History isn't important but, honestly, it's not all that important for *him*. Ruth has abandoned all her inhibitions when she takes to the bleachers with her school chorus and Betsy and John had their own starring roles in their elementary homeschool production. Those two also picked up recorders and learned to toot, practicing seemingly endlessly with Betsy's toots actually sounding as if she were playing on Tad's nice wooden instrument rather than her $5 plastic Yamaha. Oh and I forgot to mention that somewhere in the middle of the school year, JT got a musical bee in his bonnet and signed himself and his trumpet up for Band. With an awesome band teacher willing to take on a student who as yet had been only self-taught, he's making his way through concert and marching band and loving it.
Now I just can't wait to see the script Betsy wrote for Father's Day put up on the Klopcic stage in the basement....it's gonna be good!