Friday, November 27, 2015

Three Things: Thanksgiving Edition

It is Thanksgiving Day. I am sitting in Sheldon's family's living room in Missouri. I love being here, even though I sometimes feel homesick for my own family. I feel that way because Sheldon's family reminds me a lot of my own family and makes me miss them even more. I want to devote today's Three Things to Things I Am Thankful For About Sheldon. That is a very long and unwieldy title. Oh well. My plan today is to look around the house for clues into Sheldon's personality and find three things that make me glad to be his girlfriend. I to devote some small part of Thanksgiving to some sort of reflection and since I am in Sheldon's home it seems appropriate to assess some things I am thankful for regarding it. 

1. Sheldon's family has tons of books. There are two bookshelves in the living room and several in each bedroom. Why am I thankful for this? Well, my family has always had tons of books too. As a young girl I determined that I would only feel happy marrying a man who valued books and reading as much as I do. Now, the books at Sheldon's house are not all his. Most of them are his father's collection. But it still tells me a lot about the type of culture Sheldon was raised in. Even the fact that my family has many of the same books. This morning I was going through the children's books and found one I have never seen before called Miss Rumphius. I pulled the book off the shelf and instantly recognised the illustration style as that of one of my favourite illustrators Barbara Cooney. I grew up in love with her books, especially one called Hattie and the Wild Waves which is about a young girl who grows up wanting to be an artist. Anyway, finding this book felt significant to me because it means that Sheldon grew up in a house where this author was read and beloved. 

2. Sheldon's family is lovely. Sheldon is the fifth of seven kids. He has two older brothers, two older sisters and two younger brothers. As of this Thanksgiving break I have met all of them. They are so fun to be with. Even though we grew up in totally different places (them in Missouri me in Illinois and Czech Republic) we still somehow share a wealth of common cultural references. That means that a lot of the jokes and throwbacks are sourced form things I am also familiar with. For instance in today alone I picked up on references to The Princess Bride, Flight of the Concords and Monty Python and the Holy Grail (Click on each one to be directed to my favourite clip from each. Watch out. at least one has the "A" word in it and one has copious amounts of fake blood. The Flight of the Concords also has at least one "F" word).

All of these are things that I love. Similarly to the books Thing above, it seems that sharing a love of the same films or comedy troupes feels so good. It feels like being at home when you find the people who like the same things you do. It also feels good to be with his family, because of how they love one another. They show their love through lots of gentle teasing, warm hugs given by the grown grandchildren to their grandma and acts of service such as dishes being done without grumbling. It thrills me to be on the brink of becoming a part of such a family. 

3. Sheldon's creations are everywhere. Sheldon spent his entire childhood in this house. Their family bought it when he was born. So being here feels like being in The Time Machine of Sheldon's Life. Or maybe The Time Capsule of Sheldon's Life. This is because there are photos of him as a child on the stairs and chairs their family has had forever in the living room. In the closet are toys that he played with and some clothes he used to wear. But best of all there are a few Sheldon art works on display. Almost all of Sheldon's siblings make cool art things. He has a sister and a brother that are photographers. Another brother is an animator. Etc.

So there is a lot of high-caliber kid art around here. When I came for the first time last Thanksgiving I revelled in wandering around the house discovering which ones were made by Sheldon. The answer is that the extremely precise stipple drawing of nine bugs on the mantle is Sheldon's. So is the Fimo fairy on the bookshelf. In the bedroom the hollowed our gourds painted to look like Sumo wrestles were also made by Sheldon. This makes me so glad. Even before I met him he seems to have been the kind of person who says to himself, "I have an idea of how I could make this cool thing. I think I will." I love how this shows that Sheldon has always been someone who makes cool stuff. The randomness of the things that Sheldon made as a young person suggests that he both had a lot of free time as a kid, but also that he was always interested in creating something fun and unexpected.

PR Announcement 
(I realise that PR is probably not the exact terminology I am looking for, but...whatevs.)

I will be using stock photos today, this is because I need to got to bed soon and also if I used my own illustrations I would have to scan them. In order to scan the images I would have to climb over Sheldon's oldest sister Holly's head because she is sleeping on the floor of the room with the scanner. If she were my sister I would be like, "Hey Sis. I have to climb on top of you head now to scan some stuff. Deal with it." But given that I am not yet an actual family member I feel that I must still treat my relationships with Sheldon's family member with more delicacy. As a political gesture it would not be the greatest. The next morning Holly could wake up and announce, "Sheldon's girlfriend stepped on me in the middle of the night and didn't even apologise."

PR Announcement About the Above PR Announcement

Anyone who is reading this right now, has realised that the above announcement no longer applies. Sorry that you had to waste your time reading the lengthy announcement above. 

1 comment:

  1. I adore this post! :) Your writing and your drawings...lovely as always!