I sent this photo to a blogger friend this weekend:
I have several happy places. I tend to migrate from one room to another during a day. Sunrise and yoga are always in the "new" living room, which faces east. I tend not to stay long in that living room, though, for the "old" living room (above) holds a much better vantage point for sunlight, and apparently I am all about sunlight. (and lack thereof; sometimes I adore a dreary, dark day.)
The past few weeks I have visited furniture stores and home decor places, trying to make a few changes in our home. Our sofas are in dire need of replacement. We just removed a beautiful 13-foot church bench from our new living room, and are filling in the empty space. I haven't been all too thrilled with what I see in some of the stores. I am not fond of particle board furniture. I would rather have paintings on my walls than wooden letters spelling out words. I like natural fibers and hardwood floors and solid wood furniture.
Ha! I must be a dinosaur.
When I gaze at this photo, which I took several years ago, I see so many "happy" things - things that are meaningful to me, and hopefully to the rest of our family. That old ball & claw coffee table belonged to my Great-Aunt Lois. My father-in-law painted the nautical scene hanging above the bookcase. The bookcase is filled with all things ponies, horses, veterinarian, travel, Spanish, Arabic, French languages. (I have bookcases in most of the rooms in our house, and they all have "subjects".) The sculpture on the bookcase is one of my Dad's: he made bronzes one year of this sculpture, for each of us five kids. It's a sparrow on a wavy branch, and if you get close enough, you see a treble clef with musical notes on it. The notes are from one of my mother's favorite hymns: His Eye is on the Sparrow. One has to be able to read music to appreciate what he did. My Dad also carved the marble treble clef on my piano. You see? People can buy lots of things from lots of stores, but my "happy place" has all of this given to me by people I love.
The flowers in the window are wintering over from the past hot summer months. If I took a photo this spring, one would see a red poinsettia, a violet heliotrope, and a peach-blooming geranium.
Our piano was a gift some thirty years ago from that Spouse o' Mine's parents. They knew I played, although their son did not. So during one trip they took from Australia, they surprised me with this amazing gift.
The cello...the cello...We had had an empty nest for several years, and there was a cello in this old living room. Just sitting there. Silently. When I turned fifty, I called the local music store, found a cello instructor, and spent the next few years under her tutelage. Our daughter/cellist asked for her cello back once she was married and had a home of her own. So, I went out and bought me a nice cello. It is about 100 years old, and it sounds really nice. This helps, since I am not the cellist I had imagined I might become some five years ago. I need the help of a nice cello.
The rattan rug is old and faded. We celebrated out 31st wedding anniversary this winter, and picked out a new rug to replace this old thing. And you know what? Life got in the way, and we have yet to go back (two months later) and purchase it.
Puzzle, the old calico cat, crawled under our Christmas tree last year and peacefully died. I guess you can't ask for more than that: a healthy nineteen year old cat, who just knew where and when to go, without much ado.
Oh - and finally? The leather loveseat and chair are a pair I bought so many years ago, in such an early chapter of our lives. The chair is still there - often with a load of books in it so that our giant Bouvier dog won't feel like it is her domain. I have replaced the loveseat with a sunny yellow linen chintz loveseat. It was sort of a "whim" purchase, and I am so happy with it. Buy on a whim, I tell you.
And that is the story of this happy space. There are all sorts of stories in every corner and angle of this room. I wonder, in that the house was built 120 years ago... how many other "happy spaces" were spent in this room?