Tuesday, September 9, 2014

there's beauty in things that are broken

Dear Em,
We've started working on our Christmas gifts, in a way that I didn't at all plan. You see, every time we went to the beach, you looked for shells & pretty rocks. You will walk for miles on the beach if you have a shell collecting bag in your hand.

In North Carolina, we find beautiful whole shells lining the length of the beach. In Rhode Island, almost all of the shells are broken. Still, you place them in your little shell collecting bag until the bag is too heavy for you to carry. We take them home, you wash them off, & then I wonder what we're going to do with all the little rocks & broken shells.

I filled a mason jar with some of your shells, & placed it on a shelf in our living room. Tons of shells & rocks remained. Faced with the possibility of finding multiple spots for shell filled mason jars, I wondered what else we could do with all the broken shells. Then I had an idea.

I traced a heart on a piece of paper & asked you to use the small rocks & shells like pieces to a puzzle & fill in the heart. Your face was determined as you set to work. In the end you created something beautiful.

I used a glue gun to glue the shells & rocks permanently into place. The first one we gifted just as a card, but the next one we put into a frame.

I love that we can gift to others a piece of Rhode Island & a piece of our adventures at the ocean. I love that it's your handiwork, from discovering & gathering on the beach, to puzzle piecing your treasures into a heart shape.  I love that we've taken things that were broken, things that many people would simply discard, & made something beautiful.

Em, there may be times that you feel broken, & I want you to know that you are still beautiful. There may be times that you have to completely start over or rearrange things in a way you never did before. Know that there's beauty in that. There's beauty in things that are broken.

I love you so,

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