I have been inactive on WordPress of late due to time well-spent with my grandchildren. My daughter and I constructed this tent for my granddaughter. She spends a lot of time in it, either on the deck or in the house. More often than not, the massive rear of her constant dog companion extends through the curtains. It’s interesting to see a mastiff with a princess complex. He is a docile giant who makes her every step.
The tent construction was simple and completed in less than two hours. Materials included a hula hoop, a round table cloth, eight curtain panels with grommets(from dollar store), fabric for ties( we cut up an old scarf) some cotton cord and a snap hook for suspension. You could easily use an old sheet instead of curtains, but the grommets made attachment so simple.
Simply disconnect hula hoop and slide grommeted panels on before reconnecting with hoop with Super Glue. Make two small holes in center of table cloth and slide cotton cord through for loop. Give it a couple of wraps above and below connection site for support so fabric won’t tear and pull through. My granddaughter and the dog show no mercy, so it had to be tough. Use short fabric strips to attach tablecloth top to hula hoop and thread through each grommet to suspend panels evenly. It worked well to thread through two buttonhole slots at each connection. Last of all, attach hook through loop for suspension. It suspends well from a hook in doorways. Our little one has enjoyed hours of play in this structure. It also provides excellent shade but allows in breezes. Total cost was well below thirty dollars.
Just got a text from my daughter.
Her: Just got another box of stuff from you. Can the kids open them now?
(I had ordered them some things the week before and asked her to not to open it till this box got there. Stuff for Isaac was in first box and didn’t want to cause upset.)
Me: sure. Let me know what they got n how it wkd out.. I forgot what I sent.
Her: Oh lord.
Me: well, did I send good stuff?
She never got back to me. Now, I am dying to know what I sent. I wish she wouldn’t complain about my texts.
For my grandson, I had sent oil crayons and sketch pad, swim trunks and shirt,self-inflating Whoopee cushion which made me grandma of the year. I also sent underwear which my daughter insists marked him for life. I should think you’d be marked for life if you never had underwear.
The baby got a swimsuit, a toy phone, a Hello Kitty fork and spoon, and a great big box to play in. She loved the box and went after her brother’s Whoopee Cushion.
We visited the Philadelphia Magic Gardens in Philadelphia. It is a non-profit organization, folk art environment, and gallery space on South Street in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the largest work created by mosaic artist Isaiah Zagar. The Magic Gardens spans three city lots, and includes indoor galleries and a large outdoor labyrinth. The mosaics are made up of everything from kitchen tiles to bike wheels, Latin-American art to china plates. It is well-worth a visit!
We stay with dear friends in their gracious home when visiting New Jersey. This gate leads into their charming garden. As you would expect, the garden does not disappoint.
Here, Mother enjoys time in the sun. As I have mentioned before, Mother is extremely frugal. I had a new experience on the way home. Just so you know, it is possible to stow eight fresh eggs, three-quarters loaf of bread and eight nectarines in a carry on without crushing them, even if that carry on has two pairs of jeans, two shirts, underwear, a nightgown, and toiletries as well as a heavy-weight three-quarter winter down jacket Mother talked my daughter out of while we were in New Jersey. All items got home in perfect condition due to skillful packing and astute delegation. I know you won’t have any trouble guessing who got bags through airport without egg casualties!
Mother is open if anyone is looking for a travel companion.
As I hold my tiny granddaughter, I remember melting into my grandma’s pillowy softness and smelling her Cashmere Bouquet Talcum Powder unaware she’d ever played any role but “Grandma.” Though I’d always heard Mother address her as “Mama” I stung with jealousy when I found out Grandma actually was her mother. I felt as though they’d somehow cheated me by knowing each other first. My first conscious memory was of toddling barefoot behind Grandma as we headed out to see her chickens. I spotted a road-grader and strayed off the path to investigate, stepping into a nest of sand-burrs, those mean little stickers that hide in short grass. I howling as Grandma hurried over with her flat-edged shovel and seated me on it as she pulled the stickers out of my tender feet.
We went on to check on the chickens where Grandma praised Della, her Dominecker Hen for laying a double-yoked egg yesterday, remarking to the others they might consider doing the same. She told Sally not to start acting “Broody.” She didn’t have enough eggs to “set” her yet. She counted her chickens and found Susie missing. Grandma got a long stick and poked under bushes till she flushed Susie out from her “stolen” nest. I felt so important crawling way under the bush bringing back two warm eggs. Chiding Juanita, a ornerny red hen, she threatened to invite her to Sunday Dinner, saying “You’ll make some mighty fine dumplings if you don’t lay a couple of eggs this week!” I wasn’t that invested in Juanita and don’t recall whether we had dumplings or not.
The barn fascinated me most of all as I peeked through the crack between its chained doors at the child’s table and chairs stored in its mysterious shadowy interior. My grandparents and uncle had only rented the furnished house. The barn and its contents were off limits to me. Nothing could have made it more desirable as I imagined the treasures it held. Surely, there was a tricycle, a wagon, and since it was a barn, of course, a pony! The longer I was denied, the more the list grew. Never was a child so deprived or tormented by desire.
I do hope my little one recalls sweet stories of our our times together one day.
Five of Maw Maw’s seven children. My father, Bill Swain is the little boy with wet pants holding the cap. One more child was born after this picture was made. It is likely someone just happened by with a camera and snapped this shot. Continue reading