Back in February I talked about doing some decorating in my boys’ bedroom.  My boys’ bedroom I’ll tell you about in another post sometime but today I want to show you what I did with my From Pallet to Flag projects.

This picture served as inspiration… although my area is nowhere near as big.

 I decided to make a reading corner.

I had planned to put my flags in another area but it just wasn’t working for me, so I fit them here in the reading corner. (In case you missed my reasoning for a Canadian flag here, it’s because my boys are dual citizens.)

From pallet to Flag


and here is the little reading corner.

reading corner


I ordered the word excelsior from Pick Your Plum.  If you don’t know who they are, you’ll want to check them out.  They offer 1 item daily at discounted prices – usually something to do with crafting.

Excelsior is is a word in Latin that means “ever higher.”  My boys all enjoy poetry but Zachary probably enjoys it the most.  I’m not sure what poet really inspired him (I would have them recite poetry in our homeschool, as well as memorize poems.) but it could have been Alexander Pope.  I just can’t remember for sure.

I wanted whatever I placed in their room to have some meaning for them.  I didn’t want it to be just fun and attractive decor but something that would resonate with them.  As I contemplated what things they were interested in (I really wanted to do something besides hunting!) I thought “Adventure” and “Being the Man” would be something that would click with them.

mountain climber with bear

One day Pick Your Plum’s deal of the day offered a wood cut-out with the word of your choice.  I thought of the common words you see around today, determination, etc. but then I asked Zachary what word he thought would be good and he said, “Excelsior.”

“Huh?  What’s that mean?”

He then read me the poem Excelsior by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.


I’ve posted it below for those who might be interested.


by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow 1807-1882

The poem is an allegory about maintaining fixity of purpose while aiming for a lofty goal,

“excelsior” being Latin for “ever higher.”


The shades of night were falling fast,

As through an Alpine village passed

A youth, who bore, ‘mid snow and ice,

A banner with the strange device,



His brow was sad; his eye beneath,

Flashed like a falchion from its sheath,

And like a silver clarion rung

The accents of that unknown tongue,



In happy homes he saw the light

Of household fires gleam warm and bright;

Above, the spectral glaciers shone,

And from his lips escaped a groan,



“Try not the Pass!” the old man said;

“Dark lowers the tempest overhead,

The roaring torrent is deep and wide!”

And loud that clarion voice replied,


“Oh stay,” the maiden said, “and rest

Thy weary head upon this breast! “

A tear stood in his bright blue eye,

But still he answered, with a sigh,


“Beware the pine-tree’s withered branch!

Beware the awful avalanche!”

This was the peasant’s last Good-night,

A voice replied, far up the height,



At break of day, as heavenward

The pious monks of Saint Bernard

Uttered the oft-repeated prayer,

A voice cried through the startled air,



A traveller, by the faithful hound,

Half-buried in the snow was found,

Still grasping in his hand of ice

That banner with the strange device,


There in the twilight cold and gray,

Lifeless, but beautiful, he lay,

And from the sky, serene and far,

A voice fell like a falling star,



When he’d finished there were tears in his eye as he explained what it meant to him.  Not only did it mean something to him but it was a poem that Zach & Wesley had discussed together.  “Excelsior”.  I had found my word.

excelsior, decorating boys bedroom


I printed the poem and placed it in a black frame.

decorating boys bedroom


The magazine rack/lamp stand came from Ross.  Hmmm. It looks like my word is hung up a teensy bit crooked.

decorating boys bedroom, reading corner


*Nighttime Picture*

I want to change out the chair and replace it with a bean bag.  Much more comfy than that stif-backed chair for reading. decorating boys bedroom, reading corner


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