Wednesday, July 26, 2006

In Search of a New...

Three little boys have done a number on our house. I was looking at our walls the other day. We have this creeping knee-to-waist-high band of gray looping the interior. Years of sweet grubby little hand prints have given us a unique designer’s touch. And we did it ourselves, thank you very much.

“Does charity extend to us?” I recently asked Todd.

“We could use some new paint,” he agreed.

And carpet.

And furniture.

And dinnerware.

And glassware.

And flatware.

And marriage counseling.

This is how it began:

Somehow I convinced myself that third-world inhabitants live better than I do. The leather is cracking on my couch. My tumblers are chipped. And we are down to two spoons that actually fit the mouths of our children.

“Our spoons are enormous. The boys are going to have mouths like the Honey Comb kid,” I warned Todd.

“By all means,” he said, “get yourself some new spoons.”

And carpet.

And furniture…

So we hired a babysitter and slipped off to Cantoni in Plano. The excursion was almost romantic. I could swear I heard Barry White wafting over the speaker system as we glided through the store with big eyes and images of a modern and updated abode. Todd and I were nearly single-minded in our likes and dislikes and I was reminded of the dating days when we agreed on everything. The experience was so phenomenal, we did it again the following weekend. Only problem was this time we couldn’t get a babysitter. So the five of us descended upon another furniture store.

“Can I jump on the big bed?” Daniel squealed.

“No!” I snapped.

“Can I jump on the big couch?” he persisted.

“No!” Todd snapped.

“Look! A Tarzan swing!!!” cried Colin.

“That is a $150 decorative tassel! Back off!” I barked.

Barry White was nowhere and I had become a walking hot flash.

At one point, I drifted off in the direction of the dainty and delicate appointments. Todd, bored with the mission before we stepped foot in the store, landed on the first couch he saw. It was a massive manly hunk of lumber wrapped in distressed cowhide and covered with metal studs.

“I don’t know whether to sit on this or shoot it,” I offered.

I thought I could see a bubble over Todd’s head revealing his thoughts and desires. It was a picture of himself fortressed and girded on the manly man couch… kids in bed… wife in other room on the computer… and the 1986 Master’s Golf Tournament on continuous loop. I thought I saw a tiny crinkle in the corner of his mouth as Arnold Palmer sunk a putt.

“Who would we invite over to sit on this?” I asked.

Arnie pumps his fist in the air! Woohoo!

“I know! How about the Gold’s Gym Employee of the Month! Or Billy Idol and some biker friends!” I offered.

Greg Norman’s up! Look at the big dog eat!

“The only thing missing from this picture is Winston Churchill and a box of Cuban cigars!” I continued.

He crushed that thing! Oooeee!

“Todd! Todd! Where are you? Come back!”

“Oh, sorry, honey.” Did you say something?”

“Yes! I said, let’s go, please!!”

Out of the store we trudged. Back to the car that smelled of old chicken nuggets and summer sandals. Back to the home that looks like the southern border of Lebanon.

Feeling somewhat overwhelmed and mildly distressed, I wondered if there was a biblical perspective to guide us.

Um… I think I found it.

Part II: Sustainable Living, Stewardship and Manna Chow!


resonating reflections said...

I so get this! We have just endured (and are still enduring) a major remodel after a major flood in our home! As I am looking at all the new flooring and cabinets and counter tops and paint and tile and....I find myself "wishing" for so much more! In the midst of it, I am thanking God for the abundance HE has poured out on us in the new AND asking HIM to guard my heart with longing for more! May my heart be content!

Sarah Onderdonk said...

resonating... why is it so hard for us to remember to be grateful? this time last year, i was grateful to be alive having undergone cancer treatment. now i'm back in the daily groove and grind... and some days i sweat the small stuff. as you said, we should be thankful for God's abundance... daily.