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Conversation Piece
by Marcy Lytle

This really cool DIY popped up and I watched in awe, but then I moved on.  It was the frame of a lawn chair, two teakwood cutting boards, and a pillow.  The lady spray painted the frame, and then glued the exact fit cutting boards – one on the bottom and one on the back – to create a quite stunning chair.  She then added a Sherpa black and while pillow and had then created a stunning “conversation piece.”

Maybe if you’re super young, you’ve never even heard of that phrase. One meaning is that a conversation piece is an unusual object that starts people talking.  That cutting board chair certainly would fit that description.  I mean…how functional is that chair?  It couldn’t be used outside because of the wood.  And how in the world did the boards just happen to fit the chair?  And…those cutting boards are expensive!  Why not just buy a new chair?  All certainly topics of interest in a conversation.

I woke up thinking about conversation pieces and wondered if I had any in my house.  Objects that would start people talking, or have started people talking when they visit.  I have a picnic table out back with a bar across it with cute seasonal garland.  That always stirs up conversation, for a few minutes.  Inside, my popcorn maker in the kitchen often starts a conversation, because it looks like chic movie theater popcorn machine.  It’s pretty, and it’s functional.  Our new front door is often a conversation piece because it’s modern, people notice it’s new, and it’s really pretty (I like to think so, anyway!)

ENCOURAGEMENT - july 2024 - simple truths2.jpg
photo courtesy of redeux_style

And then…my mind wondered about the value of conversation pieces. They’re usually talked about for a few minutes, and then the conversation moves on.  But here it is a day later, and I’m still thinking about that chair.  The image and the genius of what she did astounded me, and I’m still thinking about it!  So yes, there’s value in these pieces.  If we are still thinking about a movie days later, and talking about, it’s a movie worth telling others about.  It’s a conversation piece of a film!  And if something we see that’s unusual or different causes us to then branch out and try it or be inspired to do something similar; that too, brings value to the conversation piece.

And finally, I thought about my own life.  At first, I thought I don’t really want to be just a conversation piece.  For instance, I really liked the idea of that chair but I would never do that…use two expensive cutting boards in that manner.  Or would I?  Maybe those boards were gifts and she never used them as cutting boards, so she didn’t waste anything using them on a chair.  And then I thought how I wish I could come up with a cool idea like that chair!  And from that idea, I wondered if my life itself and how I carry myself, present myself, and give of myself creates any kind of conversation among those I encounter.

If I can make those I encounter wonder why I’m peaceful in hard times, then that’s of value.

If I can stir up conversation about the joy others see in my heart, then that’s of value.

If I can cause friends to want to copy any good character they see in me, then that’s of value.

If those same folks wonder for a few days and then ask me how and why…then that’s pure gold. 

Maybe they’ll want to upcycle their own lives, and I can then share how The Great DIYer took my brokenness, added the most value of all – grace and mercy – and created this thing of beauty (in His eyes) that then set me free of performance, guilt, fear and depression.  And then maybe those onlookers will want to know how they too can experience this transformation.

Conversation pieces.  Are there any in your home?

(She's a great follow on Instagram - Sarah Teresinski - #redeux_style)

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