Saturday, June 5, 2010

Fool that I am

What was I thinking??? Oh my word. Ok, I got in over my head this week.
I had no idea what school was going to be like. It started on the 1st and I had five assignments due by the 4th. One was a room descriptive essay, which I will share with you at the bottom of this post.
I just finnished writting when all my essays are due and I can tell I'm going to be a very busy person for the next two months. Good thing I didn't take any more classes than I am.
I finished up my last session today and I have a wedding on the 12th and then I'm done with photography for clients. It's been painfully obvious to me this week that I cannot do both photography and school and be Mom all at the same time. It would be a different story if my kids were being watched by someone who would play with them and keep their minds going while I work on pictures. But they are not, and it's my job to do that.
I do feel good about this decision. I know at some point I may ache for a client, but I know I cannot do both. I just don't have those skills right now to toggle family, work and school.

Okay, now for my first essay.

Where My Heart Rests

Every house where love abides and friendship is a guest,
Is surely home, and home sweet home, for there the heart can rest.
-Henry Van Dyke
If you were to come to my home, the room that you would be greeted in is the room that I love most. This is the room where our family is introduced to family and friends alike. I spend hours each day in this room because all of my favorite things are kept here and I love that it stays the cleanest. Rarely does the clutter and toys of the children reach this far out of their rooms.
As they enter into my home the first thing that most people notice is our large family portrait that hangs over the oak fireplace mantel and the black wooden letters spelling FAMILY under it. This portrait was taken two Octobers ago at a visit to an apple orchard in White Bear Lake. We are dressed in reds and browns and are situated near the ground in front of an old red weather beaten fence. Our oldest son, the tallest in the family, smiles from the center of the family wreathed around him, his perfectly straight teeth hidden behind closed lips. Our youngest, a squinty eyed red head, sits on his lap. The other two children, a brown haired playful boy and a blonde sprite of a girl, flank his sides. My husband and I are situated behind our little gems leaning over them reaching our delighted grins into the picture. A picture of family harmony.
On the mantel below our portrait sits one of my treasures, a framed picture I took on one summer visit to my parents home in Utah valley. It's a black and white image of their hands entwined, holding onto each other with my father's hands taking a guiding position. This image speaks more to me of their love for each other than any image of them smiling at me would.
The floor in this room was a project we undertook a couple of years ago after having water damage from a leaky dishwasher. Hours were spent with my husband and I on our knees measuring, cutting and pounding the oak colored wood laminate slats together for three of the rooms in this house. I love that it looks clean even when it isn't and I love the way it complements our oak fireplace mantel and the wood trim around the doors and windows. I also love the time we spent together working on this common goal and we have something beautiful to show for it.
The oversized avocado green suede couch to the right of the doorway is still new and hasn't suffered the wearing abuse the children have doled out onto the other furniture. Often I will sit sideways on the soft fuzzy cushions with the southern facing windows behind it open and savor the sunlight that flows in through the white wood blinds and warms my skin. I will snuggle my back into the yielding cushions, close my eyes and meditate for the few short moments I can steal during my busy day, sometimes catching the faint scent of the old cinnamon apple pie air freshener baking in the outlet across the room. Sometimes my daughter practices her spelling words on this couch, sitting upside down with her legs dangling over the back of the couch and her head hanging down towards the cranberry and beige shag rug. Perhaps she believes that letting the blood rush to her head will make her brain remember.
From the corner you may hear a chirp, a chatter, or perhaps if you are lucky you will hear a wolf- whistle from my cheery little cockatiel, Rocky. Her home sits in one corner, a tall black cage with the door open and wooden playground on top. A beige cloth drapes over the back and will cover her cage to prevent drafts in the night hours. During the day she wanders freely over the cage using her beak to guide her way. Her wings are clipped so I never worry about her wandering too far. Her day is spent on the highest perch either chewing up the wood or chirping for me to come give her a ride on my shoulder while I perform some menial task such as folding laundry. She loves to hiss and attack the clothes as I spread them across my chest to fold.
In the dark corner on the other side of the fireplace some remaining photography supplies are beginning to gather dust. A pink fluffy bean bag chair used to cradle sleeping newborns, a roll of arctic white paper resting against the wall, a bag of black packaging boxes and silver elastic bows. I don't know when or if I will ever use them again. My dreams of photographing my life away slowly fade as I undertake this new adventure called "college".
Next to the front door is a little wooden tile painted in cream and gold with words saying, "Other things may change us, but we start and end with family." Pictures of my children dot the room, on the table, on the mantle and on the shelf.
A large vaulted ceiling creates tall white walls across the room from the couch with tall open doorways leading into the kitchen and family room, creating a great circle for the children to run races and play tag through. In the middle stands a pale white blank slate wall waiting for "the masterpiece" I plan to create. A lofty goal I have set for myself, I know. The black and gold rocking chair, camel recliner and honey oak table with cranberry and black iron lamp resting under this space only make the white space look even bigger and more empty. I want to create a wonderful image of my children, in a field, with warm and rich colors to display in this space. I want to create a work of art that makes one step back and realize that it is not only an art piece but it's also a portrait of the children who live in this home. Someday I will create this masterpiece but until then the wall stands blank.
On the fourth wall stands a faux aged cream colored armoire filled with all my computer things that I need and work with on a daily basis. On the top sits an old wooden red rooster with spindly black legs, a woven basket full of pens and pencils, and a fake ivy plant drapes it's dusty vines along the top and down over the edges. This is the one plant in my home that has not had several near-death experiences. Often the children are found sitting on my black rolling computer chair in front of the armoire, gathered around the computer screen and chattering directions to each other on what action to take in some game they've found on the internet.
On the wall next to them is a large picture of the LDS temple in Salt Lake City. It's granite spires lit in white with the golden sunset reflecting on the Great Salt Lake behind it. The temple is central to our family and religion. I have this picture in this room to remind, or rather reassure, myself and our children that our family is forever.
This room is where we greet friends and family and bid them to come in and sit for a while and visit. We share friendship, laughter, love, games and joy in this room. It's filled with my family even when they are out in the world and far from me. It is the room I find rest in and the first room my children enter when they come home and shrug off the world at the doorstep. They are greeted with safety and love as they enter this room and reminders that they will always belong. This is the room I love the most and where my heart rests.

1 comment:

DeAnna said...

Fun read! Sorry I haven't been to read your blogity blog for a month, and had to catch up on it all this morning. I wish you the best!!!!