Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Keeping Up With Galoshes

August, 1988

Dear MaryJanes,

Apparently your father is a bit jealous of my VW collection as he had gone and purchased a VW camper van for himself. I would think with all of his own hobbies { motorcycles, RC airplanes, scuba diving, sky diving, and partying} he'd leave VW's for me to have something of my own. I find that it irritates me to no end. I want the camper van to be something special for you and I.
A little retreat for us to take little road trips with. Something treasured and independent from anyone else.
I had to scrimp and save for this van and I value it like someone else might value a huge diamond ring. I want to create fun memories for us and be able to take little outing that are affordable to take. He just opened his wallet and bought one without any sacrifice to his budget of play things.
We took ride into Michigan for a camping outing. It was cooler at night by Lake Michigan so being all snuggled into the blankets at night was very comforting. Most of our meals I have been making inside the camper but on a really cool evening we walked up to a lakeside convenience store as this wonderful aroma was drifting in the air from that direction. We discover something new, Pasties. It is a hardy meal in an edible hand held pocket. They make a pie-like crust and fill it with roast, potatoes, carrots and celery. We had never had these before and devour them. It's a complete meal wrapped up in parchment paper. We can walk along the lake edge while we eat our supper. We both get full bellies and head back to the camper to build a campfire. I have packed graham crackers, marshmallows and chocolate bars to make s'mores later in the night. The next day we head for home and need to stop for fuel right away. There at the pumps in a young boy standing next to a cardboard box. On the outside of the box is written, FREE KITTENS. We peek inside to find three little kittens steering up at us. Two of the kittens are meowing and one sits quietly. Inside my mind I repeat, no, no, no. You beg and tell me how you will take care of it. "PLEASE MOM!" "Please, pleeeezzeee, PLEAZZZZE" you repeat. "Ok," is said, followed by every parents rules of, "you are going to have to be the one to feed it, and clean its liter box and make sure it has fresh water." You agree to my terms and conditions as the quite, little white kitten with a gray spot on it's head is picked up from the box and embraced into your welcoming arms. "I love him" you exclaim. He seems to love you too, as all the way home he was content to be quite and ride along in your lap. We stop at the first store to purchase all the needed kitty items and a toy for Keyda so that she does not feel left out. A good idea that you came up with on your own. Your kitty never does meow all the way home and we later discover that he is deaf. I have learned that a high percentage of white male cats are in fact deaf. This doesn't seem to effect him as he is curious as ever and is sweet as can be. I am not much of a cat lover, but he is a sweetie.

I have been trying to show you things about nature but you seem to shy away from anything that jumps or creeps and crawls. You surely have no interest in frog and toads, even as I hold them and ask you, "isn't he so cute?" "NO!!" you demand. How can such an out-of-doors woman have created such a fancy city girl? It is a rare treat for me to take you fishing and have you actually like the idea, as long as you don't have to touch anything but the pole.

The one thing that you and I enjoy together is creating. We can work on craft projects for hours at end. When I am working, I make up art classes and projects for you and the other kids. Each day we do something new. You tend to like drawing and are actually very good for your age. You sign each master piece with your name and we talk about how it turned out. You love the bright, vivid colors, of coarse you do, they suit your personality. I adore the warm tones though my favorite would be yellow as it makes me feel happy and silly. I will save a few of your projects so that some day we can open up the box and talk about the past. It is hard not to save all of the art projects, so I pick out our favorites. If I were to guess what your future holds, it would be that you will be an artist. Time will tell.

Now paint a pretty picture.



  1. I've been catching up with your blog~ haven't been on as much lately with my son's wedding...
    Reading about your sweet craft times with your daughter brought back so many memories of times like this with my own daughter, who is an artist, too. I also used to watch her and marvel, and wonder what she would do in her future~ where do the years go?

  2. Linda,
    I wonder if you knew she would be an artist?
    Congrats on the son's wedding! If it hasn't already taken place, I wish for them a beautiful day!