I encourage my kids to enter every contest that comes along. It gives them a reason to stretch themselves and use their imagination and creativity. It seems like school is so focused on bare bones academics these days. I jump at the chance to help my kids develop some of their more right brain talents. And it improves their self-confidence. They don’t always win, but each of them has won something.
This was Eve’s first big win.
Six of my kids entered a Halloween Coloring Contest. This isn’t an ordinary coloring contest. In order to win, you have to add something to the picture that is given. It was fun to see the way each of my kids created different Halloween scenes behind the scarecrow. We got a telephone call on Monday informing us that Jane had won the 12-15 year old division and Eve had won in the 4-7 year old division. We were all so excited for Eve’s first big win.
I picked up the prizes yesterday afternoon. They gave me a large green bag for Jane and an envelope for Eve. I waited until they were both home from school to present the prizes.
Jane opened the green bag and began shuffling through a variety of Crayola art supplies: twistable colored pencils, a big package of thin-tipped markers, crayons, watercolor paint, paint brushes, scissors, glue, construction paper and two sketch books.
Eve looked at Jane’s bag and excitedly opened her envelope which contained … a gift certificate for a free dental cleaning. I cannot describe how funny this was for our family. Eve’s excitement deflated and she fell on the couch in disbelief. For some reason my five year old is not as excited about a free dental cleaning as I am.
Often our disappointments arise from comparing ourselves to others. If Eve had no reference for comparison, she would have been happy just to have won. But, we were able to convince Eve that in order to have an effective dental cleaning, she would first have to go out for ice cream with mom and dad. This helped her cope with the disappointment.