Thursday, March 24, 2011

Making our Bedroom a Haven

When we got married I had these instructions about our bedroom: green and burgundy, and no flowers. We put up dark green mini-blinds. Our bedding was green and burgundy, pretty much solids, except for the green and burgundy plaid king size blanket our close friends gave us. This actually serves as our comforter most of the year. I love plaid, and we even had green and burgundy plaid vests for our groomsmen. (In fact the blanket is from one of them, hmm...)
Our walls were neutral, and had several existing nails. I hung "stuff" we got for wedding gifts or happen to have. There wasn't a lot of intentionality in this. We had an entire house to ourselves for more than eight years, we didn't need a single room as a haven.

Now that we share our home with little people, our bedroom's purpose has really changed. It is no longer just necessary for sleeping and storing our clothes. It is our personal space, but not very personal. I have wanted to paint. But since we have this huge heavy bed that would be a major production. Making new nail holes also tends to cause controversy. We tend to argue about whether hanging things at eye-level applies to the person who is 5' 8" or the person who is 6' 6". So I just never figured there was anything I could do but try to keep it tidy.

I was needing to make a slight change, though. My girls had a tall heavy dresser in their room. They don't need it in there, and I have been living in fear that my almost 2 year old climber would be pulling it down on herself. When she was messing with the lower drawer on Monday I knew I had to take action. So I decided to move the cedar chest squeezed between my side of the bed and the wall to the living room, and put the dresser in it's place.

So, when I saw this post about sprucing up the master bedroom on the blog Raising Arrows, I was suddenly inspired. These were the 2 lines that really clicked w/ me:

  • "What is the first thing your eye is attracted to in this room?"
  • "Does this room reflect you and/or your husband in any way?"

The first thing you would see in our room is this:

Only picture a lot more blank space as the cedar chest was where the dresser is. That picture has been hanging there since we married. It looks like this:
It was a gift from a lovely couple. And the sentiments are lovely as well. But really my favorite part of it was the burgundy mat. After 13 years it finally occurred to me that I didn't have to keep it.

So I began to think on that other question: What reflected us? I came up with 3 specific things. The pictures of our family that sat on the cedar chest, the picture of the lighthouse I grew up a few miles from out east, and the Terry Redlin print of deer watching a combine that I bought as a gift for my husband for our 10th anniversary. The farm, our family, and "my" lighthouse; those things really reflect roots of who we are. So now when you walk into our room you see this:

I know it isn't perfectly proportioned. And the black doesn't really go w/ the green, burgundy, and natural wood color scheme. But it makes me smile, and be thankful. The picture on the wall has a great snapshot of my hubby and I from our best friends' wedding last year. It was such a happy day filled with love. The bottom photo is an adorable shot of our girls for Valentine's day. We are all in black and red so the pics look perfect together. The pictures on the dresser are baby pictures of the girls. The picture in the corner is hand calligraphy with our names, wedding date and Bible verses. A dear family friend made it for our wedding gift. It used to hang on blank part of wall on the other side of the windows, looking totally out of place all by itself in our burgundy/green room surrounded by blank wall. But the black mat coordinates well with my black frames, and it now "fits"

And lastly there was the now blanker space on the other side of the window and there was that frame with burgundy mat I like so much. I thought of something that reflects us. Here it is:

That is us, in the combine. Technically we are all there, though little lamb is "still in my tummy." Harvest is our favorite time of year. It is a lot of work, but riding in the combine is a special kind of peaceful. It is not a perfect photo. But it makes me smile. And hooray for digital photos and home photo printers, it took me all of 15 minutes to put together. The dark colors fill the blank space much better than the lighter calligraphy. But most of all it evokes joy and thankfulness.

I spent $0 on this spruce up. I had everything on hand. I did use up some ink and photo paper. The changes were small but so significant. When I see them they evoke the peace, joy, and thankfulness that now makes our room a haven.

I am linking up to the Spring Spruce Up. Check out all the other ideas!