Thursday, June 11, 2009

Work in Progress

So I was inspired by this and this to go a little nuts with my office.

For awhile now, I've been staring at my Restrained Gold office walls, wondering what they need to make them a little bit more. More what, I didn't really know.

More interesting, more chaotic, more meaningful, more me.

We've only lived in this house for 2 years, but that hasn't stopped me from repainting, redecorating, reaccessorizing, and most certainly NOT reorganizing the house several times.

Because that is what I do.

{Please don't ask for any important documents without giving 3 weeks notice and 21 reminder calls.}

Several years ago, I (and most importantly, Brad), realized that creating and changing living spaces is just something I do.

Honestly, it gives me oxygen.

Staring at the same arrangement of the same furniture and the same frames and the same colors makes me start shaking from the inside out.

It's not about buying new or expensive things (see love of junk here or here), it's about repurposing, salvaging, and using what I already have in new ways.

Rarely am I original, but frequently I am resourceful.

I crack myself up when I feel God's glory in the the creativeness and satisfaction I get from finding a door in the garbage or carefully recombining decorative crap from the basement that makes me smile and pause when I pass the family room.

Eric Liddell, of "Chariots of Fire" fame, said he felt God's pleasure when he ran.

Now, I am fully aware that it sounds slightly ridiculous for a suburban housewife to say she feels God's pleasure when she shops at garage sales, spray paints things, and hangs them to the walls with her glue gun, but...I do.

I really do.

I'm not Monet, I'm not Martha Stewart, I'm not even The Nester.

My gifts aren't that outstanding, that glamorous, that noteworthy.

They are small and only questionably, "gifts."

But they were given to me by the Creator.

He reminds me daily that I am made in His image.

And that includes creative messiness, as well as order.

Change as well as stability.

Silliness as well as sincerity.

I realize that creating a warm and inviting living space is not essential for life.

It really isn't. It's gravy.

I realize that we need bread and water to survive.

Not double chocolate peanut butter cookies and s'mores bars.

But for whatever reason, I feel complete joy in expressing comfort and love through these very things.

So anyway, back to the wall.

To most, it is random. It wasn't assembled by a designer, measured by an mathematician, and those frames certainly weren't hung by an engineer.

{In all honesty, there was no measuring, no rulers, and there are enough holes in the wall that our neighbors can probably read this over my shoulder without binoculars.}

But when I get close, when I look into the faces, the buildings, the papers on display, my throat clenches for just a second before each and every one.

My babies.

My family.

My husband.

My marathon.


Wrigley Field (no explanation on teariness needed).


{Or lack thereof.}

But my favorite aspect of The Wall is the middle.

On an old corkboard, that I painted with chalkboard paint, that I glued into a cheap frame, that broke while we were trying to hang it, that is liable to crash off the wall at any second due to shoddy workmanship, lies the song of my life.

The phrases, the verses, the Words, with which my Creator holds me.

My heart jostles each time I read the words that, while familiar, present power, grace, and freshness.

I love that they are the center of this explosion. 

This tiny little tribute is to the Creator...and to his grace in allowing me to savor the simple tastes and sights of this temporary world.

Despite the reality that I'm messy and busy and careless and forgetful.

So maybe that is why I love glue guns and spray paint--they make the old and battered new again and breathe life into the worn down.

And they remind me that all creativity is really His.



jen@odbt said...

WOW! Nicole - your wall looks amazing. This is the inspiration I need for my family room. I love everything you do and how everything means something to you and your family.

PS: Was it hard to spraypaint the cork board? I've been thinking of doing this with an old cork board.

Tricia said...

I love, love, love. Everything. So beautiful.

(Thanks for blogging again. We've missed you.)

natalie said...

nicole! its great, the wall, the blog, you! :)

Kari said...

Love it! Let's get together and paint the hutch under the frames- it's calling my name!!!!!

Robin said...

I think this might be my all-time favorite post of yours. LOVE it!

Amy said...

I LOVE THIS. I love how you write, you're so funny, and all of this is so meaningful. Thank you for sharing your gift :-)