Art

While my husband was away in 2011, I painted our bedroom a soft, light green. Dave had found the color, so I thought it would be a fun welcome home surprise to have the room done when he returned. My sons helped, and within a couple of days the room looked great. We rearranged the furniture, picked out a new bedspread, and bought new bedside lamps (thank you, Ikea!). Everything was fresh and clean, reconfigured to create a calm, warm, welcoming space. The only problem was the artwork; the pictures that had looked good in a white room didn’t look right with green walls. The frames were the wrong color and some of the pictures just looked awful. Thus began phase two: re-arting the room.

The pictures that looked good against the green got new black frames – Story People art and the watercolors by my friend, Maggie. A Portsmouth watercolor came out of the front room to fill one space, as did a porch scene from upstate New York. A search through my sons’ art folders along with their blessings resulted in two new pieces for the bedroom: Colin’s watercolor of our home and Jared’s stained glass tree done with art crayons, both framed in simple black wood.

I love these pictures for many reasons. They were created by my sons, illustrating literally how they saw and portrayed their world at a particular age. They are well done. I like their subjects and their colors. They work with the other pictures, and they make me happy when I look at them. They are also a two-part parenting lesson for me:

 Enjoy each age and stage, remember and give thanks for  things past.

Love the child in the particular age and stage, not the age and stage itself. Life isn’t still, so don’t try to freeze it in place. Keep the picture under glass,  but not the artist.

It almost makes me want to paint another room…

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Johnna

I am a Christian educator and writer.I have worked in churches, denominational offices, and seminaries. I have a PhD in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, with a focus on Practical Theology and educating in faith. In 2010, my book, "How the Other Half Lives: the challenges facing clergy spouses and partners," was published by Pilgrim Press. I believe that words can build doorways that lead to encounters with God through the Spirit.

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