Play day with Mini Beans

My Happy Bean and Auntie Glenda invited the mini-beans to come over for a play date.  Mini Merrin and Auntie Glenda made art, and Mini Katie and Happy Bean were cooking up things in the kitchen.

Planning a day of art and cookery takes a lot of time and effort to gather necessary supplies, but it’s worth it.  It reminds me of how important it can be to reach across generations, to teach them things we already know in fun ways, but also to simply do things together, to be together, talking and sharing.  In our technologically populated world where everything electronic is at our fingertips, it’s good to have some time to interact with others: friends, immediate family, and extended family.

So Friday was a play day.  Cousins Pip and Smidge and I looked on and smiled  The Grup Beans were exhausted by the end of the day, but it was a good exhaustion because the Mini Beans were happy campers.

So plan a play day with a younger…or an older.  In the immortal words of Martha Stewart, it’s a good thing.

Time for a road trip

My Happy Bean’s eldest granddaughter is graduating from high school tomorrow, so we are all going on a road trip to witness the big event – “all” being Cousin Smidge and me (of course) with Happy Bean, Mister Bean, Auntie Glenda, Auntie Sara, and Cousin Pip.

Said Grand lives in Charleston, SC, but her graduation is in Columbia, SC and not her home town.  A couple of years back, she decided she didn’t really have enough close school chums and wasn’t thrilled with the high school environment, so she got her parents to give her permission to “attend” a public online high school.  Turns out there are such things all over the US, including Virginia where we live, and most are tuition free, providing some standardized educational system for those who can’t or don’t want to attend a regular brick and mortar public school.

I was thinking that tuition-free Internet schools could be a great alternative to dropping out for motivated, young pregnant teens.  Although some districts operate schools just for those teen girls, not all do, and education is so important for them, particularly since many will end up being single parents with kids to support, so they will need all the education they can get.  A no or low-cost program they can complete at home is a super idea.

#1 Grand Bean’s choice to attend a home-based internet school had nothing to do with need and everything to do with want, but no matter the reason, it takes some determination to work alone without peers to challenge you.  She is ranked third in her class, and we are so proud of her.  This fall, she will attend The College of Charleston, rooming with her “from birth” friend.  She is the first, but there are four more behind her.

And the baby Grand Beans roll forth into the world….and the elder Beans beam with pride.

Congratulations, Kirsten. We love you.



June 10

We had the wettest May on record this year with  9.79 inches recorded at Richmond International Airport.  On the other hand, this pales in comparison to what has been falling from the sky elsewhere.  According to an NBC news report that tells us that at Camp Mabry, a military installation in Austin, Texas, 16.92 inches of rain fell through May 28.

Things are all about perspective.  Yes, it rained here nearly every day in May, several days at the end of April, and continuing into June, but we weren’t flooded, just wet.  And rainfall is a good thing.  It may prevent folks from cutting the grass and doing some gardening, but we built up some stores of necessary water and we are not suffering from a drought.

Water is necessary.  To complain about a necessity of life is foolish.  Too often, we complain when we should be grateful. OK, it’s hard to be grateful when you forgot your umbrella and got drenched, but being wet is merely an inconvenience, not something to complain about. Experiencing thirst and famine because there was no rain falling to drink or grow crops to eat is something to complain about.  When people and their vehicles are washed away in a flood, or their homes are totally destroyed by flood waters, that’s something to complain about. It’s perspective.

I believe that we all need to spend more time being grateful whenever we can and less time complaining about inconsequential things.  We might all be happier.


Good things come…

…to those who wait.  Or so they told me.  So I waited.  And finally, I gave up on the plasterers and flooring people who never came, and we took matters into our own hands, led forward by the intrepid Auntie Glenda, and accomplished the remodel on our own.  But what a disruption.  We had to haul out every stick of furniture and tarp it in case of rain!

In the end, it only took us one VERY exhausting day and then … Voila!  The job was done and we had to move everything back inside!

But now the walls are light and bright with clean, textured drywall plaster, and the floors are cozy in “cork” (or something like cork), and all my furniture is back where it belongs. Many thanks to Auntie Glenda, Cousins Pip and Smidge, and my Bean.

More photos (courtesy of Auntie Glenda) are on my Facebook page:

This breadbox is my home.  And home is a very good place to be, particularly when you have friends and family with which to enjoy it.