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Saturday, May 7, 2011

MAKING A HOUSE A HOME


pregnant woman with drill descending a stepladder



Just back from helping friends Justin and Crystal paint the interior of their new house. I like painting trim and they like to paint walls. It works out just right. This is their first house. Crystal is glad to be getting out of the rented trailer with tires on the roof. The house was affordable for them and all three of us are impressed with how well the house was built. The doors fit and the windows are not stuck. As it is right now, all walls painted white and plywood cabinets in the kitchen, it's a bit plain. The carpet was light gray and dingy, not worth cleaning. Justin will put hardwood floor in the kitchen and recarpet the rest of the house. We all love the place as a white canvas. They're painting the rooms in colors, each room its own. They've picked out some nice colors. Justin has been working at house painting for enough time to have a feel for colors in rooms. Crystal is working her own photography studio doing wedding pictures, baby pictures, portraits.



Crystal has an eye for color and Justin does too. I hadn't seen the eye for color in him before. Painting interiors for awhile, he's developed quite an eye for color. After we'd finished for the night, around 10:30, Justin opened the can of apple green paint for the kitchen and painted some on the wall. The plywood pretend pretty wood cabinets will be painted black. It will be dynamic. In my mind I see a green hillside with black cows grazing it. It's one of the beautiful sights in the mountains, driving along a country road and see a big green meadow on the side of a hill with black cows is as nice as seeing the meadow in snow with black cows. Black enhances all the colors. I think of the French painter Rouault, who outlined his colors in black, an exaggerated version of Japanese prints with the colors outlined in a thin black line. Rouault didn't do thin. Thick black lines. His paintings have the dynamic quality black used well can give. 



The colors they've chosen are light without being pastel. He put a little of the color for the living room on the wall, to see it outside the can. It's the color of orange sherbet. A stunning orange that has no suggestion of Halloween in it. Not even a breath of it. Crystal is considering all the black entertainment center props like tv, a big one, and the furniture. Bathroom will be a blue between aqua and turquoise. I'm happy to be helping them out. Like I say, they don't like painting trim and I do. So I want to give them all the time I have. This is their first house, a good, firm house with good walls and windows. Big deck around 2 sides and a big yard for the kids. Speaking of which, Crystal is getting so big she's about to pop. She waddles about, forgetting everything with what she calls "pregnant mind." Baby due next month or sooner. She's hoping we'll have the house ready to receive the baby. She's not over-doing it helping with the new house. She's getting exercise and functioning at the same time.



The basement is the full size of the house with a garage door. A good basement to be Justin's world with tools and projects. It has a good wood stove that only needs a little cleaning. It can keep the floor warm in winter and the heat bill down. These are people I'd do anything for, and this project is a part of anything. Justin I've known since he was around 3. Crystal I've known since they were married a few years ago. First thing I said to her when we became acquainted was, "You're a brave girl." Later, I learned what she'd been through before, losing first husband, Justin's friend, and I realized she is, indeed, a brave girl. I said once, "I'm glad he found you." She laughed and said, "I'm glad I found him." By now I've come to believe they are something on the order of twin souls, soul mates, whatever it's called. I'll go with soul mates. They definitely are mates to that deep an extent. 



I feel like they have a closeness of souls that sought each other unknowing until they found. Something I've noticed, when Crystal is worn out, tired from a full day of all-out work, when her face loses the feminine in her countenance, she looks like Justin. It's got to the place where I see the same person, one in masculine face and one in feminine face. I have full confidence now that I can leave this world assured Justin won't need my prayers any more. Justin's life makes me want to take down from the shelf The Painted Bird by Jerzy Kosinski, the Polish existentialist, like Roman Polanski, and read it again after 40 years. He's a powerful writer, and Justin has a powerful energy.  



Justin has a good mind for paying attention. When he took up bow hunting, he started going to tournaments to fine tune his skill. He golfs, and learns from every encounter with the ball. Everything he turns his hand to, he does well. He practices and gets better. He doesn't mind working and he has a wife who doesn't mind working either. She has been getting pregnancy pictures of herself showing her belly. I got the above picture of Crystal working in the new house. It's an enjoyment for me to see them both so happy in their new adventure having their first house, at last, after working toward it for so long. They have a huge area for any size garden they want. The house has a good deck around 2 sides with good railing and verticals close enough a toddler can't squeeze between them. The improvements the house needs are minimal. They have found a place to call their home.



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