Tuesday, January 22, 2013

# 393 - A Life of Color

This past week I have been doing some things to the house to liven it up, warm it up. I found myself in a trap of too much Real-Estate-Beige, so I put a splash of color back on the formal dining room's walls. Actually, for my entire adult life, I've had either burgundy/wine or a red color in my dining room and kitchen areas.

A few months ago, for some reason, I decided to do something different, so I took away the reddish color for a while, but it didn't work for me. I had to get the color back in my life, even if we are selling the house.

Formal dining room with color again. Day-time photo.
As for this color, I LOVE it because it is rich and velvety looking. It took about 3-4 coats to get good coverage, but it was well worth the effort. Also, I went ahead and repainted the chair railing and baseboards with white high-gloss paint to give the room better contrast.

Formal dining room, night-time picture
Of course, my kids are now grown, each of my two daughters are in their twenties. My oldest is 25, so things are really rolling with my children being grown adults who are building their own lives and their own families, so my formal dining room gets less and less usage on a daily basis. But, when my girls were growing up, for most of their childhood, I did the majority of the meal preparations, until my oldest hit ninth grade, then my husband began cooking more than the weekend BBQ contribution and well beyond the occasional kitchen assistance level or holiday meal preparation. 

However, up until that point, I had been the main person who cooked dinners and who made my children breakfast before they went to school and who made untold numbers of school lunches that I put into paper-bags, always with a drawing of a funny witch with a little message to make it interesting, and I made after-school snacks that were a staple of my children's diets...lots of peeled and sliced we had much more going on than just dinner. 

Often, on the weekends, I'd make a big pot of basic marinara sauce which was used for stuffed manicotti, lasagna, spaghetti  and such...freezing casseroles so that my work-week would go more smoothly by having a home-made meal already prepared. 

Meal-time is something you can't escape when your children are growing takes a LOT of food preparation to raise children, all-throughout-the-day kind of meal preparation. It takes a lot of work, a lot of presence, a lot of dedication and a lot of dirty dishes.

These days, I'm completely content with a bowl of soup, a sandwich or something quick and easy to prepare. Staying out of the kitchen, keeping it clean...that's okay with me.

Me serving dinner to Stefie when she wasn't feeling well and
home, visiting from college over the holidays.
Still, I have those days when I long for one of my standard, comfort-food recipes and I have a great time cooking for those who mean the most to me, especially for the ones who love my cooking and think that nobody can make it quite like their mom!

I love that being a mom puts a stamp on your food so that anyone who thinks they can make it better is simply proving that they don't cook like mom. This is the reason so many of us crave our mom's cooking...she had a way of preparing certain meals that no one else can match. Even though my mother's residence is now Heaven, I still crave many of the things she cooked. My mom was an incredible Southern cook, but she prepared a wide-range of foods, many that were ahead of her time, such as Orange Chicken and other Asian dishes. She also made the best iron-skillet hamburgers in the world! Often, I would just eat a hamburger patty with ketchup...DELICIOUS!

I guess that's part of being a mom, there's a special touch that the maternal instinct gives to our efforts. When we do something for our kids, it is truly to do it from our hearts. Of course, there are those days of drudgery when the cooking and cleaning can feel a bit too much, but then we do something little that lights up their faces and their positive response rejuvenates us to keep going.

That's the beauty of having real color in your life; relationships are like color for our soul, healthy relationships push away the drabness of life. Yes, the true riches of life come from our relationships...those give real meaning to our existence.

Today, I am feeling extra burgundy. How about you?

1 comment:

LindaG said...

I mostly like greens, browns and yellows. But other colors have made their way in.

Enjoy your burgundy! :o)