About Play

Posted: October 29, 2010 in Reading Diary

I can vividly remember when I was a child; I went out to explore the ‘Mysterious line’, which can never be reached in the distance. I walked and walked for hours, sometimes alone, to reach there. Sometimes when I just about to reach, it disappeared again. I can vividly remember I started to sketch and draw things on the paper, spending hours to make it into perfection. When I finish one, I want to start over again. It gave me a sense of fun for some reason. But I don’t know why… There is no reason perhaps; there is maybe a reason because someone told me I can really do better about drawings then anything else. I didn’t take it seriously until 16 years old; I really start to think it is my passion to do something visual rather then science and engineering, or finance…EST. I can vividly remember I spend every lunch nap time wondering around the house, search pieces of material to make something, sometimes a bird, sometimes a water gun. I found great pleasure to make something out of my hand. The sense of playfulness I can still remember and always enjoy doing when I am older. Till now, when I sit in front of a canvas, I can paint for hours, not because of any dutifully result I can get from it, but simply play with colours, texture. The more I do it, the more I can feel it close to perfection. It improves every time I do it. If it doesn’t, I can scratch the old oil painting and make into a completely new one after years. I always found this kind of pleasure in my design work as well. Maybe that’s why I choose to do design rather than other professions. I guess that I am lucky to find something I can enjoy doing and always do it well. I can’t imagine if I didn’t find my childhood playful games and turn it into who I am now, I will suffer of doing something I wouldn’t enjoy doing. I just read this book called ‘Play’, how play shapes the brain and opens the imagination, and invigorates the soul. It sounds a big title. Through the play interaction with my baby Athina, I observe her character and find out things that she really enjoy doing. I encourage her to try different things without any restrictions. The more I realized that she is a very sociable baby, likes to move her body and takes physical challenge. She likes to dance with music, play independently for a long time without adult attention. In the group she is a popular little kid who likes to do things and others will go around her to cheer her up. Feels like there is some kind of special energy around her to attract some friends. Perhaps her laugh and lightness. She enjoy books more then the toys. She likes to bring some books to me to read for her just after one year old. And she starts to pretend to be the character in the baby TV shows. There are many different personality types about play, some are explorer and the others are artistic creative, some are story teller and the others are collector. Just imagine life without play can be so boring. And people who don’t enjoy any types of play find no passions in life. It leads to everyday life into a dutiful practise. The current school systems training students to focus on academic achievement, especially in Asia. I heard kindergarten children start to have tuitions in China. Parents and children focuses on the academic achievement so much that they lost their childhood. Children starts life this way will find no pleasure in learning. The more space you leave them to find out what they want, they more they will find their play personality. Nobody is the same, even you are the parents you wouldn’t have the same play personality as your children. What we can do the best for our children is to closely observe and encourage whatever they found out about themselves. Now I am going to my studio to continue my play.. a new painting starting from yesterday. It is a magic that I experienced. 


Spiritual Garden

Posted: September 17, 2010 in Reading Diary

Today I read this book, called ‘ Letters to Sam’. I found it inspiring.

‘We can take care of our parents by being open and honest and reminding them about importance of the joy. And sometimes the best way they can take care of us is by taking care of themselves.’- Letters to Sam.

As a mother of my three angels, I am living each day with growing love, also worry. I understand my parents more than before. I met my best friend, Vivi’s mother in the Christmas. All the thoughts comes into a vivid picture, what kind of ‘Spiritual Garden’ I will grow for my children to play together with me.


Vivi’s parents have the most wonderful relationship I have ever seen. Although I heard they also have their problems like other family does. I always longing for that kind of connection one day with my partner. They became my role model when I know Vivi 15 years ago. But one day, a sad news comes from Vivi.. her father is dying of cancer. It was a dreadful time for the family. Time passed on. Vivi’s mother spent three years alone by doing hundreds of paintings and sketches. She talked to Vivi and her husband through these works. She called it her ‘Spiritual Gardens’.

I am so glad that she found a new life now with Teacher Yang, they now are growing a ‘ Spiritual Garden’ together. They start their day with their art work. When Vivi and I went to visit them, they each shares their ideas about how to plant a flower in your  ‘Spiritual Garden’. I found it inspiring to share this moments with them. Vivi’s mother has thousands of phone calls with Vivi when she is in Seattle. She draw the feelings and emotions through oil on canvas, she turns her worries and love into a beautiful existence. When time passed, her worries of her child is become little jokes.  She did so many of them until they have to be piled in a tiny bedroom. There are no many words but a delightful spirit, sometimes a loud laughter…

For my three angels, I need a big place for this ‘Spiritual Garden’. I decide to plant a little seed each day. As a mother of three young babies, I don’t  not have time to do so much. But watering them each day and remember  the existence of my ‘Spiritual Garden’. It needs to be taken care of. Even just one hour a day. Even just before have a nap with my baby, open a good book to read, even just a little sketch of my babies’ beautiful sleeping face. It is a little seed each day. One day, I want to invite my parents come for play, and my three angles are taking care of their spiritual garden’s with great skills.