Today at school, I was teaching Nicholas about the artist
Ferdinand Georg Waldmuller, who was born in Austria in 1793.
His paintings are beautiful Austrian landscapes with
snow-capped mountains, green fields, tall trees,
humble farmers, and children.
He is an incredible artist with the power to make one
feel peaceful and wish for a quieter life.
We discussed a few of his paintings, examining all the
little details, shading, and colors.
The 1828 Webster's Dictionary describes art as a "creation of things of beauty."
I asked Nicholas a question: If that is the definition of art,
who is the greatest artist of all?
"God?" he responded.
"Right!" I said back.
God is truly the master creator of beauty.
Seeing beautiful paintings that men and women
have and can create through their gifts, talents, and hard work is amazing.
We talked about how God created much more than just what we see.
He also created what we feel and hear.
I read the beautiful Hymn to him: "All Things Bright and Beautiful."
All things bright and beautiful,
all creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.
I asked Nicholas what he thought his gifts and talents were from God.
He looked at me and shook his head. "I don't have any." My heart broke.
"Oh, son! You do! You are so creative...look at
the little doodles you draw; they are so clever and funny.
You are so funny! You make me laugh and smile every day
with something witty you say or do.
And you are so sensitive and aware of others' feelings.
That is a very wonderful gift that God blessed you with.
You have a strong body (even though he was just diagnosed
with strep throat yesterday...awesome!),
and you have a brilliant mind that thinks clearly."
Then I felt prompted to show him a little Mormon Message by
Dieter F. Uchtdorf. In the video, his message invites us to rely
on the Spirit and use our divinely inherited ability to create
things of substance and beauty.
"The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul.
No matter our talents, education, backgrounds, or abilities, we each have
an inherent wish to create something that did not exist before.
Everyone can create. You don't need money, position, or influence
in order to create something of substance or beauty."
I asked Nicholas if he knew what my greatest creation was.
He looked at me and said,
"YES, YOU!" I confirmed.
With tears dripping from my eyes, I smiled, took his skinny body in
my arms, and smothered him with hugs and smooches.
It's times like this that make home school worth all
the work and the frustration.
* * * * * * * * * *
Teachings from RMN
"Lessons from Eve" October 1987
"Exercise your agency, teach things that are elevating and useful.
Teach faith, repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Then let your commitment to the mission of the Church
be evident in all you do.
Preaching the gospel, perfecting the Saints, and redeeming members
of your family will cause you to concentrate on covenants
and ordinances of eternal significance.
And remember your example.
What you are is more important than what you do or what you say."
Home School curriculum:
(I love it so much!).