Artist Living

How My Kids Inspire Me as an Artist

Me Ra Koh

Warning:  This is a long one with lots of photos!  🙂

When we came home from Thailand, we were almost five weeks behind in homeschool.  The Denuge Fever had changed our whole trip, and it was looking like Pascaline would be doing homeschool through the whole summer to finish 3rd grade.  But there was another option.  Since we do a 4 day homeschool week, she could choose to do homeschool on Fridays and the weekend.  If she was committed to this much work, she may just make up the time and finish when schools do.  Well, not only did this little girl make up the time, she finished before the private and public schools!  And seriously, I have to honor her today on the blog!  When she puts her mind to something, Pascaline doesn’t let any thing stop her!


Monday was her last day, and I thought to myself “this is the perfect Defining Details Photo Exercise!”  What better way to remember this year than capture all the details that made up 3rd grade and Kindergarten.

All the books we’ve gone through this year!


Blaze had his own cubby hole for all his Kindergarten work, from multi-colored squares, to marbles, to crayons and pens, to play dough, flashcards and bean bags filled with lavender (don’t you love Kindergarten work!).


We spent time celebrating the growth in their handwriting.

Pascaline learned cursive this year, and we were both shocked at how much her cursive writing transformed her printing.  The left side is her printing from the beginning of the year.  The right side was her last Spelling test this week.


Blaze started the year with the top line, but look where his handwriting is now!


I also LOVE to see what and how children express through themselves through their art.  So I took out all their art pieces and started going through them chronologically.  As I looked through drawing after drawing, I couldn’t help but be inspired.

The kids took risks with their drawings.  They got out of the box of working in coloring books and played with color and experimented with shapes.  They also didn’t quit.  Blaze really, really wanted to learn how to draw superheroes.  So he started.  Those three words are huge.  So he started.

His beginning Batmans looked something like this.


And then it progressed to this.


And this is my favorite!


Blaze also went through a phase where he did boxes with circles inside.  He was fixated with the whole concept of shapes and combined colors.  He did them again


and again


and again…is it just me, or do you find these fascinating too?  What is he thinking?  What has him so interested?  What is he working out in his head?  The colors changes but there are also all these constants.


Pascaline LOVES drawing and is AMAZING.  She loves to draw Fashion Models and then try to design and sew their dresses with bits of fabric.


She’s better at drawing people than I’ve ever been!  I personally thought this Family Drawing was progress because she’s nine years old, and it’s the first time she’s included Blaze in the “family” picture.  🙂


My favorite!  Mama and Pasc


My knowledge of how to draw is so limited.  So we enrolled Pascaline in a special drawing class this year, and her work is blowing my mind these days!  She takes on these awesome challenges and works at  one drawing for weeks.


I’ve watched the kids face their own insecurities all year.  Blaze draws a superhero that in his mind isn’t as good as sissy’s.  He starts to shut down and doesn’t want to draw anymore.  But then, after a few minutes, he starts again.

Pascaline loves animals, and she is turning a new chapter in her understanding of lines, shadows and shapes.  Her mind is so open to trying new things, taking on a new challenge.  Does she cry sometimes half way through?  Yes.  Don’t we all.  But when she’s done, the finished piece is worth every tear.

How can I not be inspired by their art.  How can I not be inspired to try again.

Now it’s time to go celebrate the end of the year with roller skates!  Pray for me.  I haven’t been on roller skates since 4th grade!  😉




  1. L says:

    I am attempting a sort of “homeschooling” for the summer for my son with a few learning challenges. If it works out, I will keep going!
    Would love to know what sort of tools you use for handwriting. We did DeNealian and now Handwriting Without Tears….still going!!
    Thank you for sharing!

  2. I LOVE this post! Thank you so much for sharing it. What a great way to honor your children and their accomplishments this school year. You are right about the squares and circles…really cool. And WOW – that wild cat is AMAZING!

  3. My hat is off to all of you who are willing and able to home school! It’s such a special gift you give to your kids and yourself. Blaze’s drawings are fascinating. I noticed that Mom used to be on one side and Dad on the other, now they are both on the same side. Hhmm. I think the big circle in the middle is the family unit and it is safely and colorfully enclosed in a beautiful box. Love that! Keep sharing!

  4. natasha says:

    what a beautiful post,you pride comes shining through.Just one question,how do you do it all,i can barely get my kids to school half a block away,let alone homeschool them and travel/work as much as you do,
    (the one who burst into tears when I was so late to model for your NJ shoots!!LOL )

  5. jess says:

    these are so great, Me Ra! what a wonderful journey you took us on in such a short time. i loved seeing the kids work, and i am amazed by Pascaline’s drawings! i have never been able to draw myself, so i will admit i’m a bit jealous 🙂 haha!

  6. Marla-Dee says:

    Wow, so wonderful of you to share your children’s journey this year. I absolutely LOVE all the drawings. It’s amazing! I have always wished I could draw, but it never happened. Kudos the the kids and to you & Brian for a fantastic job! Happy summer! 🙂

  7. Rhonda says:

    Why does this post have me in tears?
    I am in awe at how amazing your children are. That Pascaline took the challenge to finish and exceeded her goals, when she had every right to take it slowly. After all, she’s really still recovering 🙂
    This post makes the FB posts even more amazing.
    Have fun roller skating.
    (I’m definitely praying for you – that you’re not too sore tomorrow.)

  8. Julie Watts says:

    Me Ra what you’ve shown, in my opinion, is that we encourage or hinder our children’s growth in direct relation to how we view our own growth. As an adult and as a child, to be recognized for our gifts and appreciated….that is such a life-giving thing, right? To be encouraged and loved for who we are and how we think, accepted and mentored through our difficulties? When you take judgment out and only perception and unconditional love remain, that’s where goodness lies. Your family demonstrates that beautifully.

  9. Karen Casey says:

    what a talented artist Pascaline is! She and my son Aidan are the same age and I have also noticed a huge improvement in his hand writing this year after learning cursive. In fact i think his cursive is better than mine!
    And what a determined little girl she is to make up that much work in such a short amount of time! hooray for her!

  10. CA says:

    Wow, such wonderful work and yes, very inspiring! And can I just say… I love how all the women are nice and slim in Pascaline’s drawings. Can she draw me some day? 🙂

  11. Charisse says:

    Beautiful post Me Ra. As a homeschooling mom myself, I can totally relate to the pride you have in your children and all of your progress as you take this journey together. When we are together everyday, training, teaching, & living with our children it often becomes so easy to brush over their accomplishments. Good for you for not doing so. Your children are obviously gifted as are their parents. Thanks for sharing. I am going to take the time to compile my own children’s last year to review with them.

    Enjoy your summer!

  12. Me Ra says:

    Thanks ladies for all your wonderful comments. What a year it’s been.

    Couple responses:

    CA–Pascaline used to draw pictures of me that had my boobs going down to the ground! I’m so relieved to know that we are out of that stage of accuracy! 🙂

    And Natasha, girl, you crack me up. For starters, you have FOUR children. FOUR!! You are like a goddess to me! You have FOUR children and you look as beautiful and radiant as ever–even when you are crying. 😉 Your little ones are also so much younger. You are in such a busy stage right now. I remember a good friend telling me that I should expect my life to feel a bit chaotic and frenzy like until youngest reaches Kindergarten. Then a shift happens, and wow, I can see the shift. I grieve the beauty that came out of those chaos times, but what a new stage we’ve entered that is just as beautiful. I also don’t do all the homeschooling. I have Brian or our nanny do have the week, and then I get to do the other half. I focus on the writing especially with Pasc.

    A lot of people have told me that it’s so great for me to be doing homeschool with the kids b/c of all the benefits for them. But can I be honest? I homeschool for myself. I love how homeschooling keeps me intimately connected with my kids in the craziness of our travel schedule. If they were in school, and we traveled this much, I wouldn’t seem them. Homeschool started as something I wanted them to have, and now its something I can’t live without. I know the seasons will change in our lives over time, but I’m so thankful for this one right now. Natasha, you are AMAZING! And don’t let any voices tell you other wise. Rhonda will box those voices for you anytime too! 🙂

    Love you all ladies! And wow, Roller Skating…a little tougher than it was in 4th grade. But so worth it! 🙂

  13. jeramy says:

    good stuff mera! thanks for the sharing. 🙂 i really believe that we receive so many good gifts from our children as we get to witness their growth. it’s truly an honor. you and brian are good parents! take care. 🙂

  14. I love seeing all the artwork. So funny, I just spent the past few days going through a huge bin of all the many school project from the past year. I love to hang, photograph and display the favorites. It not only makes my kids feel proud, but indeed inspires me to be as brave and creative as them. What a gift to witness such growth and creativity unfold right before our very eyes. Scott and I are just now starting to experience that “shift” your talking about. We miss our busy babies, but are really enjoying getting to know these precious little people in our midst. We just might have to take them rollerskating! 🙂

  15. Mason Adams says:

    once a week i use a roller skate as my exercise :~.

  16. roller skating is my sport, this sport is very enjoyable and is a form of exercise too’,.

  17. roller skating is a very enjoying sports and past time too _

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