Chalk it Up

I was in Paris for eight days earlier this summer with my, as it turns out, not-maladjusted middle child.  (I had worried about the warnings of “middle children”when I became pregnant with the third.  They were all unfounded.  The middle may be the best adjusted of the three. Perhaps of all of us.)

I took the same trip with my oldest three years ago when he was the same age his brother is now, and guess what?  It was not the same.  Because the boys are not the same (and, perhaps, I am not the same.) It always makes me wonder when someone notes how different my boys are if that person is similar to his siblings.  We’re none of us clones, so far anyway, and isn’t that what keeps family life so, well, lively?

It might have been the light, but after being in Paris for less than a day I was convinced that my living room walls are the wrong white all the way around, and cannot imagine that I made such a tragic mistake.  Still, I have not picked up a paintbrush since I painted over the yellow swatches in the dining room. It’s difficult to paint while writing or herding children or reading books on the porch, so the walls must wait.

As I sorted pictures on my return, I could see that they could be grouped into categories.  This had not been my intent. “Take pictures of chalky white things, anything having to do with being a Leo and architectural elements for a house you will very likely never build,” was not on the list of “what to do” on this trip.  Though I knew myself well enough to know that I would take pictures of floors.  And I did.
I learned a lot about myself on this trip. I thought a great deal about how I want to live and where and why.

But if my plans are clearer, and bigger, I came home knowing first things first.  This mirror will have a chalky finish just as soon as I can get these boys back to school.

Images from top, Carlo Bugatti, Rembrandt Bugatti, both at Musee d’Orsay, the remaining from the Rodin Museum. Oh, except the last, which is obviously my dining room.

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6 thoughts on “Chalk it Up

  1. Patricia all of these chalky white works of art are wonderful and your mirror will be fabulous in this finish!

    Trips do give us time to reflect and absorb!

    The Arts by Karena

  2. Ah, that pesky Paris light! I "upholstered" my small bathroom with a collection of mirrors. I wanted them to look like plaster coming out of the painted walls. After wasting much time and way too many gray cells of my brain I used B Moore's Chantilly lace on the walls and simply gessoed the mirrors. I didn't seal the finish. I dust them with my sweeper and if they look like they need a fresh do, I simply gesso again. I also have used Porter's Accrishield exterior primer for this kind of project. I think your mirror is charming and will look even better chalked up.

  3. I love this post–teaching me more about deeper introspection. Have a super day dreaming of chalky white and back to school.

  4. So, PLEASE let us know what color/brand of chalk white you find or use. I have been searching for a year now. Thank you!

  5. How clearly your voice rings with love and delight! I hope you get to go back soon, you bring back the light somehow…

  6. I am in love with chalk white! It will make your mirror look so chic! I just discovered your blog and I love it! Can't wait to read more!

    Jamie Herzlinger

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