#1,163 My Room.

Last night’s blog made me remember some things about being a kid that I rarely think about these days. I go to my parents’ every Monday night when Ben plays basketball and tonight I went up to my room to dig around and find my favorite book from then. I read The Perks of Being a Wallflower 3 times in 2001:

I also found some of my ‘artwork’ from 7th grade. The assignment was to draw a series of something. Can you guess?

And 8th grade, a can:

And 9th grade collage:

And a self portrait from 10th grade along with the decoupaged African mask from the primitive art course in junior high:

I remember so clearly working on this portrait at my grandmother’s house where I was staying while my parents were out of town. My grandfather had passed away only a month or two before and it was my first time to stay there without him being there too. He was the first person I’d ever loved and lost. I remember how very very sad I felt sitting next to his seat at the dinner table. I was listening to a mix CD quietly in mammaw’s dining room while I was working on it, and the song Video by India Arie was playing. Mammaw came in to see what I was up to. She was in good spirits, and I remember she began smiling and dancing to this song—stepping in rhythm and clapping her hands and I danced with her. We turned it up. And I wasn’t sad anymore. She cut some mild cheddar cheese off the block, we ate it and watched TV until bedtime. That’s one of my sweetest memories. I hope you have one like that, too.

And in 11th grade I started and never finished a Counting Crows tribute painting. My buddy Josh Presley offered me a tempting sum of money for it but I wouldn’t part with it:

Those are all good memories. And my room was the coolest room a teenager could’ve asked for. I loved the beach, and our once monthly trips weren’t enough. So mama and I painted the beach right on my wall.

I would simply die if I couldn’t have cloud wallpaper on the ceiling over my desk nook. Mama always obliged my creative notions for decorating.

The painting I did in 8th grade that was featured in the town newspaper when they wrote an article about me with the headline: Laurel’s Jewel. I played some Jewel songs at the coffee house downtown and could never shake the label. I went out of my way to stop playing her songs, but it was a lovely and flattering article.

And we painted my bathroom the very shade of bright blue I wanted. Arctic Blue it was called, and it was perfectly beachy.

The Hawaiian patchwork shower curtain from Pottery Barn Teen:

The neon worm magnet from my friend Nancy as a ‘good luck in the play’ gift has been stuck to the light fixture since 9th grade:

All my best friends from elementary live in their own room:

And a few of my favorite things, like my cousin Steve’s Led Zeppelin t-shirt from the late 70s:

My favorite pajama pants of all time, often worn in conjunction with said Led Zeppelin shirt:

A tiny portion of my CD collection:

The first t-shirt I ever designed. For the NEJ French Club:

My class ring (worn maybe 3 times) with a totally rad peace sign under the stone (cause I was a hippie, you know) and my signature inside the band:

And now I feel a little like you’ve all seen me naked. But it’s so good to compile these images of things from my past that shaped who I’ve become. Can you see me in them?