Sunday, August 28, 2005

painting the nursery

In making a record of all the crafts I've done that I can remember, I completely forgot one right under my nose: the murals in the nursery and in the kids' room.

The nursery was mostly done just before and after our oldest was born. The first picture was of Richard Scarry's Mr. Fix-it, above, taken from a pop-up book given to Daniel by the family of a good friend, his then-boss. Throughout the book Mr. Fix-it is shown overinflating tires, turning kitchen faucets into geysers, and in the end steam-rollering a car: "Mr. Fix-it can fix things for GOOD!" Mr. Fix-it is not only in the same line of work as Daniel, but they both wore red hats and bib overalls. We thought he would be an important person for our babies to learn about.

Next came one of Daniel's childhood favorites, the Cat in the Hat. I had to paint a fake door around the cat so that I could leave the walls white but still paint the blue background that increased the Cat-in-the-hat-ness two hundred percent.

Next came one of my childhood favorites, Arnold Lobel's Frog and Toad. The murals got bigger and bigger as they went. I'm not quite sure why.

The strange lines on the walls are the fake-wood paneling painted white. We live in a 30-year-old mobile home and decided it wasn't worth it to drywall the inside of a 6x8-foot bedroom.

It makes me laugh to see Mac and Bubbie looking somewhat like Toad and Frog themselves; short and tall versions of Baby.

After Frog and Toad came Ernest Shephard's original pre-Disney Tigger, Piglet and Pooh. This was by popular demand from many of my friends, when they saw what I was doing - "you just can't have a cartoon nursery without them!" I didn't have any real objections to it. Piglet especially looks so much cuter in the original style. Pooh looks like he's about to turn the bedroom light on.

I had plans for Maurice Sendak's Wild Things in the closet-turned-crib-space... but... it's hard to believe these pencil lines have been on my walls for six years, even surviving - still unpainted - through a washing or two.

I also had other ideas in my head. But then BigE got big enough to have his own ideas. And what he wanted was - Bert and Ernie. I balked at this. I didn't want television characters... but the irony was, we don't have a TV. BigE met Bert and Ernie through Golden Books. I had no real reason to say no.

As you can see, I very nearly finished these guys. All but the black Sharpie Marker outlines missing from Bert's legs. I'd forgotten it was unfinished till I snapped the photo yesterday. Bert and Ernie, another short-and-tall combination that Mac and Bubbie love to point at and "talk" to. Who besides God would have guessed that there were going to be twins in this room?

We moved the big kids into the big room after putting drywall in and painting, long before we knew we were going to have twins. I had several ideas for a mural in there, including a folksy farm scene at sunset, or a shop with painted tools hanging on the walls, or a giant map of our town on one wall and a map of the world on the other wall. Chickie was too young to participate in the discussion, so I asked BigE what he would like painted on the walls. His answer, and the resulting room, coming soon to a blog near you.


Anonymous kim said...

Ahhh .... I wish I had time to paint our nursery! :)

if I can find where I've stashed it online, I'll post a pic of the Max-the-Wild-Thing that you DID finish! :)


8/28/2005 10:19 PM  
Blogger Karin said...

cute cute cute...!

8/29/2005 3:32 AM  

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