The little Goofs are artists, they did not get this talent from me. They draw and love to "make stuff." GoofBoy insisted I take him to the art supply store to buy "gimp."
"So your sister will have something to do while she is home sick," I asked.
"She can use it too, but it is for me, I like making stuff."
This point was really driven home to me several years ago, one afternoon when I picked up GoofBoy from an after-school art-class at the JCC. Some local artists were displaying and selling their wares in one of the community rooms. GoofBoy insisted we go in and check it out. A five year old boy, who really wants to look at art - cool! Nothing could have been further from my mind when I was his age.
We chatted with the artists, who critiqued GoofBoy's work. Since I couldn't drag him out of there, I thought I'd get a little something for Mama Goof. I really have a very limited aesthetic sense, but I am pretty good at buying jewelry for my wife. (As it happens we attend shul with one of the artists and a week later Mama Goof went to synagogue wearing a necklace the artist had made - it looked great. I actually made two women happy that Shabbat!)
GoofBoy picked up a pin that he really liked.
"I want this!"
"Yeah, yeah. You don't need this. Come on," I began moving him towards the exit.
GoofBoy burst into tears. I've seen this temper tantrum before, but then he said something that surprised me.
"You always buy mommy beautiful things! Why can't I get beautiful things too?"
I turned this one over in my mind. My son was asking me to buy him art. This wasn't another cheap toy, this was different and really special. The price was modest, it wasn't made with precious stones or metals.
He nodded, tears flying off of his cheeks, and true to his word, he has shared it nicely.