What words do you use to describe your home decor style? Formal? French Country? Industrial Farmhouse? Contemporary? Regardless of the style I prefer, the one that best describes our home is more along the lines of Early American Garage Sale.
So many pieces in our home were handed down, along with detailed retelling of their uses and previous owners. Some have lost their stories as they were passed from one relative to the next but the memories remain. Others were picked up here and there and we are left to wonder about their heritage, or make up spectacular stories involving outlandish characters of some sort.
Take the door that sits in our entry way, for instance. She’s an old one with her five horizontal panels, her rusty knob and the dingy once-white paint with splotches of worn red peeking out from underneath. I saw her propped against the back wall at the ReStore one day. I debated for a few moments as to the wisdom of dashing to the front of the store for a cart to transport her before she caught someone else’s eye, or just plain wrangling her up to the register myself. In the end, I don’t even remember how the two of us made it, but we did. I might have been a little giddy as I headed out the door to load her up in the van for our trek home when two sweet ladies stopped to admire my new little friend. They seemed confident she was going to become a headboard, right? Or perhaps a bench? A bookcase?
Frankly, it was none of the above. I had absolutely no idea what I was going to do with her. I simply knew that she was worth every penny of the $10 I had just paid. They got it. These two kindred spirits. They seemed to pick up their pace a bit as they hurried into the store, chattering about my little treasure, while I headed home.
Once home, my guys greeted me with the same line of questioning, though their enthusiasm did not match that of my new-found kindred spirits. But that’s okay, they indulged me and I tried to be sweet about their lack of vision. Maybe I should have swapped numbers with my two new friends, for sheer camaraderie and encouragement when I wasn’t quite making sense to my own people.
She sat in our garage for a few weeks until it finally dawned on me that she should be live in our front entry. I had been trying to figure out how to make our foyer warm and inviting and she was the perfect solution, inexpensive and unique. So my sweet hubby helped me secure her to the wall. That Christmas she was adorned with a simple grapevine wreath and some white twinkle lights, and that has been her attire ever since. Well, mostly. Her lights have burnt out, but we’ll be fixing that soon.
I don’t know her story, but she sure is awesome and she has definitely made our entryway more welcoming. I wonder who passed through this old door of ours. What stories they would tell of what they found on the other side. I wonder if others got them, or looked at them like they were half-crazy. Or maybe, like me, they were loved because they were quite okay with being considered a little crazy for thinking outside-the-box.
This choosing to redeem is all about giving the opportunity for new life, new purpose, new beauty. Sometimes it’s best found in leaving things pretty much as they are, and admiring them for their simplicity. Our old door has become a sort of backdrop for a collection of old and new things – a bench my hubby built for me, a doily that was my Mama’s and some dusty old John Thompson piano books.
Redeeming isn’t always about all sorts of work, time or energy. Oftentimes, it’s just picking something up, dusting it off and showcasing it’s value, even if others don’t seem to get it at first glance. The joy comes in seeing the possibilities that await when we choose to open the door to redeem.