When I visited my sister last spring in Kansas City, we got to talking about our childhood home in Phoenix. Our home was a very comforting and welcoming place, and our two parents took good care of it and us. I did not know it at the time, but we were blessed.
The house was large because we were a big family, and our dad was a building contractor- a serendipitous occupation given our ever-growing numbers. He also was a sculptor, and when his large, angel-shaped weather vanes spun in the wind, it felt magical.
My sister, an architect, remembered more of the details. With her help, I was able to do a gouache sketch of the front of our childhood home. Eventually, the drawing had the elements in the right places. The windows were on the correct walls, the angels were in the driveway, and the hedges and trees were along the front and side. But even with the detail, it never felt like I got it right, so I put the sketch aside.
The Christmas story is partially about a family finding a place of love and safety in uncertain times. After all the upheaval of the past two years, I wondered if I could adapt the sketch of our childhood home to convey this message in my 2021 Christmas card. Using Procreate, an app for the iPad, I considered multiple versions of the scene. Windows and foliage were removed. At times, people were on the porch and in windows, and the sun and the moon sometimes shone overhead. This went on and on, and I was at the point of going with a different theme and sketch. Then, I moved the angels off the driveway into the sky, and it finally felt right.
May the angels of Love, Safety, and Zest bless your homes!
Merry Christmas to all!