Search This Blog

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

DIY Fest - Doing it together again!

(lip balm, seed bombs, mint, and material)

We had fun at DIY Fest!

Now we at Kidz City are not always so good at documenting ourselves. However I will try to share some of the snap shots I saw with my eyes last Saturday, in the dimly lit beautiful cavernous space of Saint Johns/2640- tables set up, workshops, signs, and DIY Fest organizers hard at work, everyone getting ready - pretty nice!

We wound up having a table this year, not doing our workshops in different areas, as we couldn't get our workshops in on time and come to the pre-organizing meeting to decide how things would be spread out--but when I came early and we discussed the spaces open and the choices, it wound up we could stay at one table and do our community games activity in the side of the room. And that really turned out well. BUT anyway - wow I tell a long story and get off track so easily. . . back to the snapshots of our day at DIY FEST.

Looking over at the table and it being full with all ages making seed "bombs" together - Harriet explaining different things about them and everyone engaged, little muddy balls set out to dry and see packets. I liked looking at the table and seeing the little crowd, some children, some adults, some folks I didn't know, everyone seemed happy. Looking at the bowl of mud, sitting on the plastic table clothe and asking "what is that?" Soil, Clay, and Seeds all mixed up. I didn't know that! I know what they are, you can throw the little ball over fences to plant flowers and plants in empty lots.

Learning about herbs and lip balm! I was so glad to see Amy again! There was a lot of action going on at the table. Containers were opened up and smelled and looked at, plants and a pot of melted bee's wax, they were in a whole big process going on over there and then next time I looked little containers were out as they were filled with lip balm (I was gifted and used one in a few moments) solidified now, the tops of the containers were each individually decorated - so cool!

I was setting up the table for making Rose-Watermellon Juice, with a perfect table cloth to soak up any spills and a colorful one on top Sara had brought. Juicing worked well because it really was an oppurtunity for all ages to work well together, many hands, filling up the juicer, pushing it down with the thing that pushes it down, turning the button on and on - juicing takes time. i was glad there was a trashcan nearby (I think Harriet asked for that!)- roses, strawberrys, mint, little hands, stiring spoon, rose water, mmmm, the color pink, people being attracted to come over and just in time when there help was apreciated, washing hands and help too. I don't have a photograph in my mind's eye for this really, or the next workshop, the games one Sine and I did (which turned out super great!), cuz I was part of facilitating and being in it.

But I do have one for the last workshop. Everyone was sitting on the ground. A pile of colorful fabric and three different sized cardboard patterns to trace a square and cut out - to assemble the sample Harriet had brought, a poach that can slide onto a belt. She also had rivets or covered buttons or something, you hit it with a hammer and it made a snap. She was explaining stuff like seam allowance. She is always such a good explainer. The materials were spread all around her, and three, four children sitting, two adults, but just children doing this activity. A boy looking at her with such wanting I whispered to her "ask him if we would like to make one" - Oh yes! he said. A girl who had never hand stitched before saying "its like dashes". Sewing is such a calming activity but people were also going, some, I would yell "goodbye" getting ready to go myself. It was that moment I looked down too, and wished I had a camera to take a picture.

(we put rose petals and mint in the punch when we were done making the juice)
- - -

I was glad there was always folks in all our workshop that seemed to be enjoying it, it seemed pretty easy and calm. I liked being part of DIY Fest this year and it was less stressful then when we plan for childcare at events, and felt very organic.

Driving home, Sara (Farmer, home-schooler, and DIY extraordinaire) said to me, "maybe I could teach a class next year----but I would be too shy..."

I encouraged her to DO IT. Do it with a partner, that takes some of the pressure off. You learn so much when you teach.

I really feel we need to get involved and be a part of the things that we want to create, try new things - teach a class, take a class, collaborate with others, work together, make new friends, keep the old, grow and change and put feedback in the box!

(I'm thinking about that box they put out front, that said "feedback" for folks to write and put stuff in. This blog entry is kind of my feedback to DIY organizers, which is "thank you" and that everything went well with kidz city this year. ALSO big thank you to volunteers and all participants who made it a great day.)

Doing it yourself doesn't mean you have to do it alone.

yours for the intergenerational collective liberation,
china/kidz city

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Kidz City Track @ D.I.Y. Fest - Sat. Sept 15

(Shira wildly throwing balloons in the dinosaur nest by the do-it-together puppet theatre, 2012)

For the second year in a row, the wonderful  D.I.Y. Fest has asked to collaborate with us! What we came up for this year is that we will have a Kidz City "track" of workshops instead of creating a physical space like last year. 

Our goal for the Kidz City Track Workshops is to facilitate working/learning/building together to support youth and parents in the radical community.

These workshops have been especially created with children in mind, start at a child’s level, but are geared for all ages and welcome the whole community. In fact we really want to play (run around and send/catch lighting bolts out of our finger tips) games with you! 

Here's the Kidz City schedule:

12 - 12:50 PM - Seed "Bomb" Making - green up an empty lot with Harriet

2 - 2:50 PM - Watermelon-Strawberry-Rose Punch - Learn how to make a delicious and calming punch (did you know that rose petals are edible and also soothing) with China and Lucy. The smallest folks can help cut pieces with a butter knife, older participants can also help younger ones and run the juicer and we can all drink together - yum!

3 - 3:50 PM - Games with Kidz City: Build All Ages Community - using games learned from other radical childcare collectives at this years Allied Media Conference in Detroit and Theatre of the Oppressed we will play cooperative games for all ages community skill building and liberation! No experience needed, learn how to play with kids 101

4 - 4:50 PM - Learning about Herbal Medicine: Make Your Own Lip Balm. Come create your own lip balm with  Amy and Beth. 

5 - 5:50 PM - Sewing Skills: Make a Pouch. Join an amazing and creative seamstress to learn beginner skills to create a useful pouch which can be put on a belt.