I’d like to start by calming your fears after seeing the featured image above. This is not a political post in any way, shape, nor form. Well, I suppose it is in physical form with Ronald smiling down on you sweetly. But not in nature.
I’ve been writing, deleting, and re-typing this for longer than I care to admit. I almost canned the post altogether, but it will end with a message that I hope stays with you when you need a reminder. My Dad died unexpectedly two years ago. It rocked my world in a way I was completely unprepared for, and am still reeling from. He was the first person close to me (I still have all of my grandparents at 32 years old) who had passed. Ugh. Passed. I hate referring to it that way. Anyway. I am his only child and my father was such a tremendous force in my life.
When my Dad died, I had to clean out his home and sort through all of his belongings. It was without a second thought, the most excruciating thing I’ve ever done. I am so thankful my husband was there for the process. For any of you who know this pain, I am sending you a warm, healing hug. Before we even got on the flight to California, I was trying to imagine how I would get hundreds and hundreds of books back to our tiny townhouse in Chicago. That’s all I wanted. My Dad documented every book he ever read and he was the most voracious reader and consumer of knowledge I had ever met. I am thankful every day that he instilled that love of reading in me, so I am able to do the same with my son.
So back to the books. Jon went to the UPS store and purchased twenty large boxes and helped me pack up every last hardcover to mail back to Chicago. He didn’t question it. He didn’t complain about the weight. Or the storage. Or the shipping. On one of the many shelves, sat a dusty Ronald Reagan statue holding an axe and a bag of jelly beans. Jon said, “don’t worry, I’ve got bubble wrap to cushion him well”. I remember saying something along the lines of, we can’t keep him…he’s blue, our house is modern and white…he’s silly…he’s not our style. Jon wouldn’t have it. He said, I know you, and without a doubt, you are going to want this little president and you’re going to find a place for him. He gets me. In my time of grief, I couldn’t see past my tears. I almost gave away one of my Dad’s most prized possessions. You may have read in an earlier post that my dad wanted to name me Ronald Reagan Race if I were a boy. So you see how much he really loved him ;). Not only did I let Jon carefully wrap up Ronald, but I wouldn’t even box him. He was my carry-on back to Chicago and sits in a place of honor in my living room as a constant reminder of my Dad and the lessons he taught me.
My point is this. If you’re in a store, a flea market, the home of a loved one, and something speaks to you – don’t let it go. Even if you can think of 5,942 reasons why it doesn’t match your decor, wouldn’t vibe with your theme, guests might think you’re odd…whatever the excuse, I implore you to bring it home. We see so many houses in our line of work and many have very little personality. Sure, they may have the latest trend in paint color, but nothing to show the true colors of the people who live there. I am a firm believer that these are the things that make a house a home.