Last year, when she was in first grade, our middle girl painted a rainbow in art class. At the end of the school year, she came home laden with nine months worth of posted work, memories from a year that will linger in her mind for a short time, and then get buried under second grade. The paper products become a kind of memory scraper, that will serve her later on, when she will find them and say "Oh yes! I remember that!"
We are not the most nostalgic of parents, Bill and I. We toss more paper treasures than we should, ironic...as we are avid "junk" collectors. But late at night, when going through her first grade mementos, we stumbled across the rainbow.
"She made this?" he asked.
"She made this." I said.
A testament to a happy child. The perfect, normal, rainbow arc. The yellow sun, the clouds, and even rain (underscoring her awareness of yin and yang, smart little chicken!)
We framed it. It is a secret trick, framing your children's artwork. When we were newly married and sorely poor, we did this a lot. I grew up with an "artsy" mother. I know the importance of lamps, house plants, sheer curtains, and walls covered in all sorts of art.
So everything even remotely lovely and created by chubby hands was placed in second hand frames and hung. As we got older and more affluent, most were replaced with other sorts of paintings and vintage posters, (we are collectors, remember?) but... some stayed. Like this one painted by my oldest when she was seven:
And this one:
Oh wait. That one is mine. I can't actually believe my husband hung that up. The painting thing was a fleeting hobby. I stick to writing now, thank GOD. ;)
Anyway, we need to find a place to hang Tessy's rainbow. It can't stay on the piano forever. But we seem to leave it there, almost as if hanging it up would put it away. Putting away Joy? I don't know about that. Maybe it will stay there for another year. Until we go through her second grade things, and find, hopefully, another one.
*I never do this but these pictures belong to me and mine and so I hereby shout: copyright Suzanne Palmieri 2009*