Little Brown Handprint

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 9 Comments A+ a-

Spring tends to bring out the cleaner in me; there’s just something about the warm air and budding trees that drives me to organize, to clean, and rid my house of the stagnant air that has circulated for months. Last night I cleaned our kitchen, giving it a good mopping, when I noticed the small handprint on the wall. ‘I have got to get that repainted,’ I thought to myself. But then a smile came to my lips as I thought of what led to that little handprint.

I’ve been nesting, doing all of the things that I’ve wanted to do since we moved in over eight months ago, but these were things that were put on the wayside while I dealt with post-partum depression. Nowadays, Jon watches in awe as I drag out the paint chips, decide on a color, and paint with gusto. One morning, I decided to tackle the tallest wall in our living room. I edged everything with tape, put down the plastic to protect the carpet, and took painstaking steps to ensure that no paint would land where I did not want it to go. Yet despite all the care I took, I forgot to factor in little hands, curious minds, and a desire to “help mama”.

I cringed each time Hudson stuck his little hand on the wall, unmindful and unaware of the paint that was still wet. I gasped as I maneuvered paint brushes and paint cans out of the way, ever mindful that I was creating an environment too tempting for children to resist. Then I had an epiphany and I put unused paint brushes and rollers in the hands of my little ones. I painted my wall with little interruption while Devyn and Hudson “painted” the wall opposite mine. I remember laughing as Hudson would switch between Devyn’s wall and my own, always eager to lend a helping hand. They giggled and snickered as they “painted” each other; they rolled with laughter every time I gave a mock gasp of shock over their “painted” faces and hair. It was a thoroughly enjoyable morning.

It was as I was cleaning up that I noticed the little brown handprint that decorated the kitchen wall; a handprint of a little boy who was oh, about that height, and oblivious to the paint that stuck to his hand. I didn’t freak out; I just knew that when I repainted my own mistakes, I would have to repaint that wall as well.

But as I was reflecting on that handprint during my mopping last night, I made a decision. The handprint was going to stay put, there will be no repainting over that “mistake”. Our house is not for show, it is not used to impress family and friends. Our house is a home, sheltering each other and our little ones; it is a home where laughter is shared and memories created. 10 years from now when Hudson is bigger than me, I’ll look down at that little handprint and remember when.



I’m a coffee drinking, book reading, laundry procrastinating, husband and children loving, mess of a woman who believes that chips and salsa can fix anything. We have chickens running around the backyard, a mountain of dishes in the sink, and on any given morning, I have at least 10 school forms that need my signature or initials. It’s a crazy life {I prefer to call it controlled chaos}, but its ours.

9 comments

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proud parents
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7:49 PM delete

That is too cute! You will treasure that little handprint some day. Aren't they growing up too fast??? I am so glad you are feeling better these days!!

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Sarah
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8:18 PM delete

I love your perspective on this Jenn! If only I could always see my home that way. I fall into the impressing family and friends category way more than I'm proud to admit, but I think I'm getting better. And this story has really helped, thanks!
Sarah

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crystal
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7:21 AM delete

How Cute! If only all of us mothers could look at it that way there would be a lot more smiles and less frowns in this world. That little handprint is part of what makes your house a home..and not a show piece. Wonderful post.

Blessings
Crystal

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Jenn
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7:59 AM delete

Your posts even sound so much more positive, compared to a couple of months ago.

Love your positive outlook.

Jenn

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CPT Mom
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8:55 AM delete

I love it!

You will be so thankful to have the memory in years to come.

What a treasure.

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Kati
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10:36 PM delete

Thank you for this...a story that made me laugh, and a final thought that made me think! What an amazing perspective you share with us all!!!

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LPDraper
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9:42 AM delete

I absolutely LOVE your view on this.... what a precious memory that little handprint will always bring you.

I must say though, that you are one BRAVE woman to tackle painting a wall with your kids around! I would be so overwhelmed with the thought that it would never get done. (which must be why our house is full of half-done projects! :) )

Thank you for encouraging this mother's heart today!

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Amazing Racer
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1:03 PM delete

Absolutely adorable. I'm sure it will be a treasure throughout the years!

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Mary
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9:34 AM delete

:) How sweet. I love it.

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