If you have ever entered the home of an Orthodox Christian, you have probably noticed that they have icons hanging in most rooms of their home. This past week, Father John was able to hang up two small corner shelves in the children's bedrooms that we found at Home Depot (for less than $8 each). The little ones were thrilled about this because they had been using their windowsills for their icons and having a corner shelf in their bedroom like the one we use for our family icon corner in Father John's office seems much more special! We allowed the little ones to choose icons that they liked from our collection, picked flowers for small vases, and bought battery operated votive candles for them to light at night. Father John hung the shelves relatively low to the ground, but the older two children still have to stand on a small stool to reach them. We did this for two reasons: first, the children are growing and we didn't want to have to move the icon corner up too quickly and secondly, we want the children to realize that icons are not toys and should be treated respectfully.
About four years ago, I blogged about putting icons low to the ground for little ones to venerate. We had used blue poster putty for the job and we had such a hard time getting it off of the walls of the house that we were renting. These small shelves seem like they will be much better! I still dream about my husband making a tiny icon stand for our little ones! Maybe someday!
Such a great idea if you have a corner! (We don't. We opted to put holes in the wall and hang ours low.)
I know it's not the same thing exactly, but someone gave me one of those heavy, wrought iron cookbook stands. I found it was perfect for holding an icon on our icon shelf. The weight was enough to keep it from toppling when it was venerated, and it has a nice aesthetic to it. And it doesn't require getting out power tools (something I won't be doing again until I no longer have all littles running around. :)
We don't have corners available either (I guess the rooms are too full of children!) but we hung ours on the walls low enough for them to reach at least with their hands. I remember one family in seminary, renting in a duplex that was not "holes in the wall" friendly, leaned a heavy piece of plywood at a slight angle against the wall and attached the children's icons with velcro. They didn't permit playing with the icons but the toddlers tended to want to take the icons down to venerate them. Had they been on nails they never could have managed to put them back. With velcro they were able to put them back in the right places. This avoided the "icons left on the floor" problem.
Kh. Nicole, I love the idea of a cookbook stand! Thanks!
The board with velcro is a great idea, Matushka Anna! I think that Button would love that!
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