It’s always a great day, when I finally get something OUT of my head, and am able to find the time to bring it to life, and have it real and in front of me. It makes me happy because, there’s a whole lot in my head, that never (ever) gets out! I wish I could do all of the projects that I actually think of, but I have other joyful obligations too, than just being all artsy 24/7. So only a small percentage of my notions ever actually come to be.
I’m really glad this one did though, because it’s a meaningful one in our home.
The vision was a wood pallet sign. And we usually have no shortage of those, as this is what our driveway often looks like . . . . . .
. . . . and there’s more where those came from. Michael is able to get them from work by the load anytime. Many of them he chops up and we burn in our wood stove. Free wood is always good! But they are great for many other things too. And a pallet was perfect for my idea for the sign I wanted to make.
The theme of the sign is a phrase we are fond of in our family, and try to live by, and it is this:
I am third.
You may well guess all on your own.
Like all families with many kids, one of my tasks as a parent is to teach my children to always put God first, be compassionate of others, and make great efforts to be selfless whenever possible. Having triplets, you can imagine we’ve had many teachable moments and conversations about this kind of thing from toddler-hood on up, while encouraging them to share, and not grow with any kind of mindset that our own wants and needs should always or ever be first. That’s just not how we roll, as Christians. Of course, this philosophy of serving, goes far beyond the constraints of our family, and the walls of our home. It applies to our world and every day we live in it, and with all whom we interact with across the board, from absolute strangers, to acquaintances, to loved ones a part of our personal lives, and everyone in between whom we happen upon daily . I want that to stick with my kids, as they grow older in their faith, and take on this world, with all of their plans and dreams before them. It can only help, for each one of us to be reminded often.
And so with another an extra piece of plywood, some old extra nails we had on hand, and some paint and a brush, the pallet sign I saw in my head for so long, was created:
Because of the list form of my idea, I saw the pallet as the perfect material for the sign.
It was cut down to a size of about 20″ x 27″.
I wanted it kept as simple as possible. Rustic, raw, and straightforward. Sure, it may not always be easy to live the message.
But God always forgives us, and we always have the opportunity to keep on trying.
It is a simple concept to remember, in terms of the priorities we want to strive to serve in our life:
For some reason, I always saw it in this darker red. When it came time to paint, I stopped and considered other colors.
But I really needed to create it just as I had envisioned it for so long. Or else I could go crazy.
Michael hung it up the very same day. Right there where we all see it, again and again, every day. He loves it as much as I do.
I suppose others may come into our home, start to read it, and be a little perplexed. But one of the most cherished things about having a home to me, is making it a place that is meaningful to our family. It’s the little things, that are personal and of the heart, that make it feel like home. And this sign….. and all it says….it means something to us. It’s an awareness that we want to be reminded of, again and again. Not just the kids. But all of us. I know I can use such a gentle reminder, as often as anyone else.
There is lots more space on this particular wall in our open living space, up there with the clock. The wall is much bigger than it even appears in this photo, with the cathedral ceiling. We realize the sign is so flush left, and leaves the wall as a whole quite unbalanced. But we’re ok with that for now. Soon enough, the wall all around the clock will be filled with other things that mean something to us. Maybe more signs. Who knows. But we have no desire to rush these things, just to fill up and balance the wall. It’s what is hanging there, that matters to us.
All of the space? Well, that’s what I call inspiration. Like a blank sheet of lined paper, or a canvas. The possibilities are endless, and exciting.
The kids have really embraced the lesson, most days. But when they are together and it’s needed, because one, or some, or all are reverting back to looking out for themselves over little things, I like to remind them:
“If everyone put everyone else second, you’ll always actually be second, too! Not third. Right? So just be a good example.” ; )
I’m a tricky Mama. ; )
I wonder what I’ll be able to get out of my head, next.
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