Report from Wonder Woman’s Paradise

photo-9

My Wonder Woman in her driveway garden.

Fortunately for the world, not everybody functions like I do. Some people aren’t constantly gazing into their spiritual navels, slowed to ennui by every fluff of emotional lint. Some look outside themselves and thrive on creation rather than contemplation and midday oblivion. Just as I have a longing that can only be quieted by a siesta, some have visions that relentlessly draw them forward into action. My wife is a vision sort.

“Hey, Kath,” I’ll say, “want to take a nap with me?”

“No thanks,” she’ll answer. “I have things I want to do.”

Thank God for Kathy and people like her. I embrace my way of being, but recognize that while I soothe my twitchy spirit with rest, others tend their restless souls with motion. And their way is as legitimate as mine. Siestas are good for those who need them, but the goal in living is to figure out what works for you in the shot glass of time you’ve got on this planet and bloody well do that. What my wife needs to do is create, and as a result, I’m one lucky napper. While I rest and write and cook, she makes paradise. I’m not exaggerating.

IMG_0904

Kathy’s roof, seven years old and still keeping the family dry.

Kathy and I moved to Shenley Drive in 2001. Within five years, we needed a new roof. In a normal-ish family, either a paid roofer or the husband would have been up on the roof. The Colemans aren’t normal. The woman of the house asked around about hiring a contractor, frowned at what she heard, and said, “I’ll do this myself.” And she did—sort of. A handful of family helped out, but Kathy did most of the work and most importantly, made it happen.

Roofing a house is my wife’s most ambitious project, but she constantly has friends and neighbors shaking their heads. “Huh?” they say. “You made this? You did this?”

“Yes she did,” I jump in to say. I not only saw her make-paint-hammer-sew-whatever dozens of marvels, but I took pictures. In no particular order, here’s photographic evidence of my Wonder Woman’s paradise. (Some of these shots appeared in previous posts.)

IMG_0540

The tile work of a rookie. Looks perfect to me.

IMG_0262

Wonder Woman at work making pillow covers for what she calls her “lounge.” She made window shades with the same paisley print. It works!

IMG_0706

When son Micah began recovery from his heroin addiction, Kathy remodeled his former basement bedroom and named it her “beach house.” Here’s a little school above the bed. She didn’t actually make this one.

IMG_0829

What Kathy calls her backyard “puddle.”

IMG_0881

Kathy’s tomato plants got so tall this summer she had to build a whatever-the-heck this is for them to lean against.

IMG_0906

One of my work stations, lovingly created by Wonder Woman. She re-upholstered all the cushions when they became sun worn.

IMG_0908

A Kathy Coleman patio: she dug all the bricks out of a half-assed gazebo in the middle of the backyard, designed a groovy-shaped patio, and laid the bricks down. I hauled a little gravel on this project.

IMG_0905

A view from my patio work station. Garage roof by Wonder Woman.

A lot of Kathy’s projects are practical, but plenty are just plain fun. She likes nothing better than to share surprise paradise with loved ones.

IMG_0254

A play tent for next-door neighbor Caroline.

IMG_0901

Handmade handbag for a friend.

IMG_0903

Another handmade handbag for a friend. You could sell this baby at J. C. Penney.

IMG_0910

One Christmas Kathy made wine-cork boards for the wine drinkers on Shenley Drive.

Each Halloween, Kathy’s paradise spills out into the front yard in the form of decorations.

IMG_0715

A Halloween shark leftover from a recent celebration bites the love seat in Kathy’s beach house.

All of my wife’s creations are actually child’s play compared to her day job. She’s a chemo nurse, loving and caring for cancer patients. “He was one of ours,” she says, scanning the obituaries. “So was she.”

I love the woman, and I love her vision. While I nap, she creates life. And while I work, she works, too, passing along life to those even Wonder Woman can’t save. Of course, that doesn’t stop her from trying.

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “Report from Wonder Woman’s Paradise

    • You’ve got that right. And today’s our 30th anniversary. In the post I forgot to mention Kathy’s biggest accomplishment: putting up with me. Peace, John

  1. Kathy-I love your creativity and how you create your space. Silly me-I was feeling impressed with myself mowing about 3 acres at the “Ponderosa”. Although I must say, I have never used a riding mower. Ed gets on his zero turn and I mow away with my cub cadet. In my mind I think we are the “dueling lawnmowers”. I never realized what fun it is to cut grass! He thinks I’m so funny-the first time he was helping/watching me. Every time I made a big circle I waved and smiled and he compared me to a child at an amusement park on a ride. After I made the first swipe, he had me stop and said OK-now we’ll engage the mower!! What also makes you a wonder woman is what you give of yourself to cancer patients-the mark of a true nurse…

  2. Pingback: The General Dance | A Napper's Companion

Leave a reply.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s