"Your job is to keep your spouse happy, and make his/ her life easier," he told them both. Then to Matt he suggested that he buy his wife flowers on occasion. "Or better yet," he added, "Build her a shelf."
There were some chuckles from the audience, but surely none of them could have known how far this act has gotten my Dad over the years. My mom is a shelf lover. Her coworkers have often commented on how organized she always is. There is a place for everything. In their home the basement is unfinished, but boy is it used! One room is completely FULL of shelves. They are deep, tall shelves on each wall holding games, keepsakes, pots and pans, etc. And throughout the basement are many more midsize shelves holding books, food, hygiene items, and boxes. There is a certain shelf just for empty boxes! She also has TWO sheds, two mini walk-in closets, a staircase lined with bookshelves, and a special shelf for each child who no longer lives in the home. Most all of these, and more, have been built, moved, painted, (or all of the above) one by one by her eager to please husband.
My favorite shelf in the home of my parents is surely the tall, white bookshelf in the "home teaching room." My suspicion is that it was constructed by my Grandfather, Johnny Lloyd (for his smiling, begging wife). It was the shelf from which I pulled "Danny the Dinosaur," "Crock Pot Cooking" and "The Miracle of Forgiveness." It is the shelf I picture when I hear President Hinckley's reccommendation that each home should be equipped with a "library of learning."
That phrase has stayed with me and been my excuse for hoarding many a childrens book. Right now some of them are in boxes due to years of shelf stripping toddlers in the house, but the won't be boxed up for long... I HAVE SHELVES!!
Now, these are not the first set of shelves my strong and capable hubbie has built for our home. When we moved in, he had the garage and storage room completely shelf ready before the week was over. I was very pregnant and got tired just watching him. But his own parents taught him the value of a good shelf. (You ought to see their gospel library- situated on some attractive bookshelves finished by John within the past few years) That Spring I even auctioned his shelf building skills off at our Relief Society Service Auction. I think they were the HOTTEST item amongst those women. Additoinal food storage shelves soon followed in our home, as well as some in the laundry room.
But the shelves you see pictured here are surely the trump of all prior shelf building projects here at the Whitehead home. (To be honest, I told John I thought that there might be too many! ) He told me that I was past my deadline and there would definately be a lofty fee accompaning a change order like ripping out and entire bookshelf).
The kids and I are VERY excited about filling up the shelves. Not quite as excited about painting them- well, maybe the kids would be excited about painting them but I doubt they will be allowed to "help" much! Will even asked if people were going to come and check out books from our library.
So my husband does know how to help make a woman happy (and the whole family for that matter) "Build them a shelf."