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Out of the Mouths of Babes: Motherhood and Creativity.

The Event. The Blog Series. And You.

The world is a better place for having its stories told.

~Grace Paley

Out of the Mouths of Babes art by Suzi Banks Baum

 

 

Out of the Mouths of Babes is dedicated to mothering and creativity.

These two topics, or realities really, are inextricably linked, but do not always exist consciously together.
I dare to say that most mothers do not think of themselves as creative, even though they are, as a human species, wired to create.

Why is the creativity of a woman so important to the world?
To her children?
To her community?
To her family?
To her self?

Because a woman’s creativity feeds her soul.
A woman’s creativity re-members her to the Divine- to the holy which dwells within her.
A woman’s creativity expresses her true nature.

Fully engaged women raise fully engaged children. Women who value their own creativity are activists for other women. Women who express themselves fully advocate for children and the planet. They are citizens of the world operating from the power centers of their kitchens, studios, laundry rooms and boardrooms of the best and brightest institutions. Empowered and fully voiced women are bring hope for the future for it , “in the realm of our imagination we begin to manifest a new reality”. As feminists seeking equal representation, as mothers seeking full expression of our experience, as women seeking equal pay as our gifted male colleagues, we find, through our creativity, a super highway to a productive and healthy life.
Creative expression does not equal a traditional success story. Women who are mothers and artists are often propelled to find alternate ways to manage their family lives and artistic lives.
It is in the way we weave all of this together that ‘Out of the Mouths of Babes’ is born.

Gloria Steinem answered this question of what her wishes for the current generations of women are for the future with this:

“My wish for women is to tell their stories.”

You can bet I was happy listening to the TED talk to hear that quote just now.

If you look closely at the collage I have here, you will see within the stripes of image, Gloria Steinem’s face. I was demonstrating strip collage technique to the Darling Hill International Artist Club this summer in Vermont and used an image of Gloria from a magazine, interposed with a vintage 50’s glamour advertisement and played over it with a contemporary rock climber. That, to me, is the interplay of women today, whether or not you consider yourself a feminist, to stand for our beauty, value and integrity in new ways by calling on and engaging new layers of understanding of what it is to be a woman. This collage is making an appearance as a notecard which you can purchase at my March 1 event listed below.

just where do you find yourself, babe?
just where do you find yourself, babe?

In the Out of the Mouths of Babes blog series you will meet many guest bloggers from across the globe. Women will be joining this conversation. Readers of the Laundry Line are welcome to comment. If you would like to offer a blog post, please get in touch with me here. And, if this topic interests or inspires you, pass it on, play with us. There are video blogs and links to the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers at Simon’s Rock College of Bard.

Here is some of what happened on March 1, 2014 at Dewey Historic Hall in Sheffield, MA at 7pm.

 

Leigh Strimbeck OUT 2014
Happy audience
Happy audience
Circle of Fifths sang us in
Circle of Fifths sang us in

 

 

The writers of Out of the Mouths of Babes
The writers of Out of the Mouths of Babes

 

Every single day, I pray you consider one small way in which you express yourself creatively today, whether it is the doodle you do on the grocery list or the way you juggle 3 meetings and one parent teacher conference.

See that, notice it, and celebrate it. We’d love to hear about it here.

xo S

  • http://www.widowsphere.blogspot.com Thelma Zirkelbach

    I’d love to contribute, especially on creativity.

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Terrific Thelma, I will contact you by email. Thank you for reading. I look forward to sharing your wit and insight with the readers of Laundry Line Divine. xoxo S

  • http://www.karenarpsandel.com Karen Arp-Sandel

    Looking forward to blogging away.I’d like to answer some of those probing questions you pose! Great Collage SBB!
    Yes, a woman’s creativity feeds her soul!
    I’ll take seconds on that one!
    mmm, karen

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Maybe that is a line for our letterpress date? I will talk to you about possible dates for your guest blogpost. xoxoxo Love, S

  • http://www.jennifergandin.com Jennifer Gandin Le

    Happy, happy, happy! And welcome to this new space on the internet. It feels so good already, with that exquisite balancing act of a collage at the top. I feel completely lost in the midst of my first year of mothering, mostly out of touch with the comfortable forms of creativity I love, but I would love to try my hand at putting words to this experience, if you’ll have me.

  • http://diviningbeauty.com mary

    You are brilliant, Sister Suzi. This whole page, your own manifesto here written. I am honored to know and love you!

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Terrific news to hear your enthusiasm, Mary. I am so happy to feel the momentum of this project and here at the Laundry Line. I am thrilled to love you too- over the moon and back again, S

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Texy, as you know, you are my sought after guest blogger, if all you have to offer is a short list of your desires…which, upon writing, would open the valves of your creativity in an instant. Thank you for expressing so clearly what it is that occurs with the arrival of our beloved families and the changes that occur. xoxox Love and hugs, S

  • http://monicadevine.blogspot.com monica Devine

    I would love to offer a blog post. Nearing sixty, I feel I have come full circle from a full inclusion in women’s rights issues of the 60′s & 70′s, to current involvement with the oppression of women today in developing countries. Of great interest to me at present is how women in post-war torn countries heal: Where “talking therapy” fails, storytelling and dance and creating art are creating bridges to forgiveness and empowerment. There is great hope.

  • http://www.consciousnesscreativity.com Lori Landau

    Suzi, as you might imagine, I would LOVE to guest blog here. you know what I (like) to write about: the liminal place where creativity and consciousness meet–the limitless realm of creative spirit where labels (mother, artist, writer, yogi etc). fall away and we just dive in and co-create along with divine spirit……..happy to write about any of the above–from the specifics: how I nurture my own creativity every single day (along with mothering)–to the esoteric philosophical tenets of creativity and consciousness……..

  • Marilyn

    You are my hero! ~_~

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Right back to you my Marilyn! So glad you are here with me. Love, Suzi

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Yup, readers of this blog will soon be graced with some of Lori’s brilliance! Keep your eyes on the Out of the Mouths of Babes page. Thank you Lori! Love, Suzi

  • http://juliawarr.com Julia Warr

    Please DO include “My Friend Maia”.

  • http://www.consciousnesscreativity.com Lori Landau

    just saw this reply to my offer, Suzi–I’m so already “percolating” and refining ideas for my guest blog–can’t wait to share my own personal connection to this dynamic dyad: merging creativity and motherhood! thanks for all you to do help boost my own practice!

  • http://www.dumbofeather.com Berry

    Hey Suzi, thanks for visiting my site and your comments on my blog. I love what you’re saying here and ADORE Gloria Stenheim – that’s one stylish 77 year old lady!
    Congratulations on providing a space for women’s stories and creative lives.
    I look forward to reading more of your work.
    Berry

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Dear Berry, Welcome to the Laundry Line. We will string a piece of cotton rope between here and OZ for you to hang things on. So glad to have you here. Love, Suzi

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    YES! Love and thanks to you Julia, S

  • Pingback: Gina's Blog of Curiosities » Out of the Mouths of Babes: An Evening of Mothers Reading to Others

  • http://! Cheryl Paley

    I wrote for 5 years for International Family Magazine on single, adoptive parenting. Would love to be a part of this!

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Can’t wait for your blog post Cheryl. Love, S

  • http://www.napkinwriter.wordpress.com Susan Hajec

    I’d love to submit on this great topic.

  • http://www.barbarastanny.com barbara stanny

    Wow! You did a fabulous job with this site. I LOVE it. I really feel your loving energy in every word. And I’d love to contribute or support you/this site anyway I can. This is awesome.

    Well done honey.
    Barbara Stanny

  • http://www.onesingledrop.com sandra mattucci

    ‘Delighted’ in being ‘present ‘ at the Festival of Women Writers at Simon’s Rock College of Bard. The muse stirred in me listening to the gift ‘mothers’ had to share. It awakened in this single woman again & again…not able to birth yet birthing the creative child within only now through my soulful artistry and the breaking open of the Divine story that dwells in ‘all’ of us~~~
    Blessings,
    sandy
    “Thank YOU Suzi…U R gift”

  • Keith Emerling

    What an fantastically rich inner landscape. A completely bewildering and raw expression. Alana’s new book is beautiful. I especially related to all the talk about food (who can blame me ;~ ) including Janet’s Raisin & Porpoise. Deeply intimate personal experiences and amazing writing and reading by all. Truely a humbling measure of craft!

  • http://light-sport-hangar-flyin.blogspot.com/ Jimmy Lawrence

    A lovely, rich evening Suzi!
    Love the blog, fab-u-lous!
    Skyrockets of praise to all who opened up the books of their hearts and souls and read them out to us the other night at Mouths of Babes. We really loved it! (Too many exclamation points Jim; chill, as the kids say, Dude.)
    I wish my daughters (Jamie in LA, Bridget in Istanbul) could have been there to bathe in the cool waters of all you women and your strong, clear, radiant voices. So uplifting, ultimately humanizing, and in answer to your call for sharing a creative moment from today, here’s mine!
    I talked with my daughter in LA on the phone for half an hour and shared with her how much we had enjoyed the event the other night. That’s always been a big part of my creative parenting/ partnership with both of them, now 32 and 34. I’ve taken its evolution, our relationship I mean, very seriously; from the day they were born. It will never be over. We are always growing in our creative regard for each other. She writes, sings, dances, makes videos, edits them: the whole package, yet is fundamentally sweet, kind, loving, self-aware, independent but gentle of heart, and so talented. She belongs in the Berkshires!
    The creativity in talking with her was in how we honor each other’s…creativity! We share what we’re working on, give each other encouragement to push through the self doubts and fears, tell each other it’s alright, and remind each other (and ourselves) to take it one day at a time.
    It’s a work in progress.
    A magnum opus.
    The best novel/poem/screenplay any of us will ever write, and the plot is so simple! — How to love the soul that flew into that body you created with someone you loved, and how to grow and water and celebrate that soul every day for all your days. Sounds like a self-help psychobook. Why not? We’re all Masters of our own learning. Sharing what we’ve learned is the PhD.
    I love the story of me and my girls. And like a good Saturday matinee, it’s never going to end until we take that next door north, and even then it just shifts, like wheat from dawn to dusk, from seed to chaff, to nourish in unimaginable new ways the Great Mystery.
    That’s my creation for today, and the one that informs the center of my existence: that I have these wonderful children to love utterly, completely, joyfully and simply every single day of my life, and that it’s all still so miraculous to me.

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    Thank you Jimmy. Your words are clear nutrition to me today. Thank you so much. I look forward to seeing you around the Festival this month! Love, S

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    xo Thank you for all your support Keith! Love, Suzi Subscribe to LLD and you can be registered in the next drawing for Alana’s book! xo S

  • http://www.studiomothers.com Miranda

    Wow. How is it possible that we are only just now meeting each other? Thank you, interwebs, for this most fabulous connection. And thank YOU, Suzi, for this important work.

  • http://www.jenniferboire.com Jenn

    love the blog, and love the collage above – amazing. I work a lot with collage, but never do stuff that’s so imaginative and transformative. thanks for the inspiration.

  • http://www.laundrylinedivine.com Suzi

    I am looking forward to your blog posts here Jenn. Perhaps someday we will be together and spark off of each other’s work? xo S

  • http://multiculturalbridge.org Gwendolyn

    This is a beautiful project. Love Maya Angelou’s quote. I hope BRIDGE can be involved in some way!

  • Ann Marie

    Suzi,
    Thank you for Mothers Reading to Others on March 1 as the opening to the Berkshire Festival of Women Writers. I had deep belly laughs (“Eat dirt, for all I care!”) and shared the pain of Jenny Laird’s image of love shining like the crescent moon. Thank you for hosting such a classy event.

  • http://www.kyusokubihaku.info Kyusoku Bihaku

    creativity to make life brighter! thank you

  • http://joannethiemehuffman.typepad.com joannethiemehuffman

    I so totally agree with you about the importance, value and need for creative expression.

  • jbrowdy

    I can’t wait for this event–what a perfect way to kick off our monthlong Berkshire Festival of Women Writers!

  • Lorrin Krouss

    After a winter that will not quit and with so much snow, ice, freezing temperatures and wind, we here in the Berkshires are so ready for the warmth and love radiated from the “Out of the Mouths”… event.

  • Suzi Banks Baum

    What a great night! What wonderful, deep, brave words were spoken by all. More photos and a blog post to follow….just gotta unpack my car first. xo S

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