Recently I attended an open house at my daughter's daycare center, and one parent informed the group that he used a file cabinet to catalog all of his child's artwork.
When I heard this, guilt overwhelmed me and I shamefully stared at the floor. You see, I don't archive my daughter's artwork. In fact, sometimes when I find artwork in her cubbie, I'll toss it in the garbage before we leave the daycare center, so it never even makes it home. I know -- I'm a terrible parent. I'm convinced that someday my daughter will write a memoir, and there will be a scene where her drunken father picks her up at daycare, and in front of her friends, he'll shred a Crayon portrait of the family, declare that it's crap, and promptly toss it in the trash.
I'm not totally heartless and unnurturing. Remember, I'm the guy who cries while watching Little House on the Prairie and Hallmark Card commercials. I do keep some of her artwork. Last week the theme of the week was food, so students designed placemats depicting favorite meals. Here's my daughter's placemat:
I know it isn't pretty, and I'll probably need to translate for you. What we have are some chicken nuggets at the top of the plate, French fries, a big piece of cake topped with cherries, blueberries, and a single strawberry. She washed the meal down with a glass of chocolate milk.
I won't express my disgust at her decision to include chicken nuggets and French fries on her placemat. She already knows how I feel about processed foods. Instead I want to focus on the cake. Here's a closeup.
Not only is it the biggest item on the menu, but it's in the center of the meal. Everything else revolves around dessert. This is the way my daughter views the world, a place where dessert is the center of the universe, which is probably the way things should be.
Treat yourself to dessert,