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Thursday, April 13, 2006

Ladies and Gentlemen, Start Your Imaginations

Inspired by Shannon, who commented on Metromom's post, I took yesterday afternoon to go outside with my two boys and play in the dirt with matchbox cars. We spent a good hour plus digging and developing the most incredible off road racetrack. The best part of it all was that it reminded me not only of how to have fun and be a kid again, but it also helped remind me how to imagine.

Obviously from the picture you can tell that it's not an architectural masterpiece, but in 0ur minds it was. We had jumps and bridges and all sorts of neat things available for our small metal cars to race across.

Important things to remember when you imagine:
  1. If you don't like the way your road is going, imagine something different. You hold the keys to what you make. If you don't like it, change it.
  2. Your imagination inspires others to imagine and is inspired by other people's imaginations. As my 4 year old sat above me and my 8 year old beneath me, we continually talked about what this rock looked like, or how we could use this stick to build something. I started breaking sticks to make little flag poles to stick out of the ground. Jacob grabbed some and started lining them up on the track for the cars to jump over. Then we both started building a bridge for the cars to drive under. Imaginational synergy was alive and creative solutions were everywhere.
  3. Imagination helps you see the potential of the situation. Granted the track wasn't really anything more than a clearing in the rocks where we smoothed out the dirt, but in our minds it was a place where real cars would fly off of ramps and slide into barricades in thrilling crashes, even drive sideways on a wall made of rocks. We saw what the potential of our imagination was.
  4. There is nothing that is imossible when you close your eyes and imagine. Before we started, nothing more than a hill covered in rocks was visible. But when we finished rocks weren't rocks any more and dirt wasn't just dirt. It was a possible for 3 kids (okay two kids and one adult who never really grew up) to design and create anything.