GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008 - (Page 8)

isn’t it grand? Picture perfect A friend of mine decided to become a professional organizer, went through the training, and returned to find she had more clients than she could handle. Fortunately, as an early cheerleader for her ideas, I was near the front of the line. Here was the challenge: I’ve been writing and public speaking and either taking photographs or collecting them for a long, long time; during those many decades, I’ve been tossing everything into boxes and hauling those boxes from California to Washington State to California to New York to Oregon to Minnesota and back to California. The organizing job is 90 percent complete: My life is either in the dumpster or in plastic project files in hanging folders in banker’s boxes. What has seeped up from the netherworld—in chronological disarray, so that first-grade birthday cards are mixed with pictures of my second wedding—has been startling. My first resume (with the interviewer’s comments; I got the job and took the file home with me, evidently); hundreds of unpublished manuscripts; dozens of presented speeches; 20 delivered sermons. And thousands of pictures. There are, of course, the photographs we want to keep only for our own memories: the 1962 Beta Theta Pi Seaside Riots after-function, the 1979 Datamation Christmas party, a 2004 roadside shrine. And then there are the majority of pictures: my son in his childhood years and—ta da!—his sons, my grandchildren. Our walls and desks and bureau tops can hold no more. So I’ve come up with several brilliant solutions—ones that will keep those precious faces before us most of the time and simultaneously make them impossible for visitors and house guests to ignore. The first idea was to gather the photographs of my grandmothers, mother and father, son and grandsons, Photoshop them into similarly sized compositions, reduce them all to sepia tone, and have Dylan Rosen at Pacifica Tile in Seattle (I found him on the ’net) turn them into stunningly beautiful fireplace tiles (at a total cost of less than $400). Less expensive and infinite in possibilities, I bought a jar of Mod Podge, cut up the best of the grandson photos to eliminate squareness and unnecessary backgrounds—and decoupaged them all over my bathroom walls. It’s a mural that’s growing along with the boys. But wait! There’s more. Seeing how delighted it makes me to see 2-year-old Carson grinning at me while I brush my teeth, I began to think how overjoyed I’d be if my loved ones from the past were also tucked around the house in unexpected corners. Open a kitchen cabinet door and on the inside is one of my favorite pictures of my aunt, circa 1925—when she was 25—posing on a diving board. Look high up in a corner of the guest room and there’s my grandmother, as a young bride, smiling down on you. Some would say that these ideas more or less require that you live in a house you own, or at least one you plan to live in until you can no longer be held responsible for defacing the walls. Humph. My house is slowly becoming graced by real “happy faces.” Property values be damned. Photo by John Lestina Editor in Chief 8 GRAND SEPTEMBER OCTOBER 2008

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008

Grand Magazine- September/October 2008
Grand View:Priceless
Isn't it Grand?: Picture Perfect
Winners!: GRANDparent of the Year
Grand Central
Toddler Town:Grand-proofing
Ask Grand:Two Tired
Tips on Teens: The Bar Mitzvah Trips
Just So We Know:BPA Not Our BFF
Full House-Full Heart-Full Time:Confessions of a Backyard Grand
Grandbloggers: It Takes a Village
Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?
Family Food = Fun
On the Cover: Nora Roberts A Fine Romance
Everything Was Fine Until You Showed Up
Happy Big Sister Day
Looking Grand:Elementary, My Dear
All in the Family:Pasta, Present and Future
Inspirations:Grandpa's Violin
Grand Bazaar
More to the Story
Grand Finale:Long Ago Under the Sun

GRAND Magazine - September/October 2008