Friday, October 4, 2013

The Art of Creating a Home

No, this is not my house, but it is the color that I would like
my house to be.  Sage green, yes.  Halloween barf, no. 
I love my house.  Not because the actual  building is anything extraordinary.  It is a 1980's two-story--3 bedrooms, 1400 square feet.  From the street, it makes me wince a bit.  It is a rather jarring pumpkin brown color, which it will stay until Prairie Grlz becomes a rocking financial success.

I love this house because I have been able to make it mine.  

This became my sanctuary after a marriage to a man who would go into an apoplectic fit if I moved a chair six inches to the right.  He wanted everything to remain the same, right down to keeping the garish wallpaper that his ex-wife put up in 1992.  I tried to hide a few bits of furniture that I found particularly offensive, but this was the man who would repeatedly recount the 2005 disappearance of half of a lime from his (this pronoun is important) refrigerator. Seriously, the lime was sporting a grey Afro and was walking on its own legs. Seriously, that story got really old after the 100th retelling. Seriously, tossing that lime may have saved his life.  And here is where I had better stop.

When I left the marriage, I regained my sanity and the right to decorate. With the help of dear friends who donated everything from a couch to drapes, I reordered our lives with an eclectic mish-mash from those friends, antique shops, and curb finds.  The result will never make it into Better Homes and Gardens, but it is purely mine.  I walk through my front door, and I am truly at home.

And in the words of Priaire Eydies' mentor, sage, goddess, and guru, Oprah Winfrey--

"These are a few of my favorite things..." (Hey, she stole that line from Julie Andrews!)

The photograph of the mother bear nursing her cubs use to hang in my bedroom when I was little.  It is now at the top of the second story landing along with bracelets I purchased in Guatemala and in China when I adopted my three daughters. 

This is my crazy dining room set with the mismatched chairs.  Everyone needs mismatched chairs.  It is so liberating!  You really must try it sometime. 

This is a little chest of drawers I found in a resale shop.  It was the first piece of furniture I bought after my divorce.  A friend encouraged me to buy it after sopping up my tears the night before. Too much sorrow and too much red wine is not a good combination.  She thought a little retail therapy might help, and it did.  I love it with my Grant Wood canvas.  He is my favorite American artist, although I am not terribly fond of "American Gothic."

This was one of my first larger collage pieces.  It is an old wooden desk.  Those are paint chips from a local hardware.  Yes, I did feel like I was stealing when I took them, but I buy most of my spray paint there, and I do use a lot of spray paint (see "Malbec, a Chair, Lucille Ball, and Baked Zucchini Cakes"--August 7th).   It says, "Your true colors are beautiful like a rainbow." Check out the song "True Colors" as sung by Eva Cassidy.

This is my guest bedroom.  Sometimes I just go in here and sit because it is a calming space.  My grandchildren love to sleep in this bed.  That fact, in itself, makes this room special.

If there is something material I would save if my house were on fire, it would be the pictures on this wall.  These are the adoption announcements of all three girls, the earliest pictures I have of them, and a picture of my grandchildren on the day they met.

This is the basket where I toss shoes that I find littering the floors each day.  I would not save this in the event of fire.  In fact, I may go upstairs right now and torch it.  Then I will retire to my guest room where I can regain my composure.  Even my little paradise has its few flaws.

A good friend told me that after you have been in a bad relationship, where you move, no matter how large or small, will always hold a very special place in your heart.  She said, "When you walk in, a huge weight will be lifted from your shoulders."  She was absolutely right.

Prairie Sherry


No comments:

Post a Comment