Mar 30, 2010
It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
FYI: This post has nothing to do with Mr. Rogers. Except that it was a beautiful day in our neighborhood. So if Mr. Rogers was your draw here, then, feel free to carry on.
When we came home from Texas, one of the things we brought back with us was a picnic table and benches that my grandpa built when I was young.
The story is that he was driving in town one day and spotted a set in the back of someone else's truck. He liked the shape of them, so he came home and explained it to my grandmother: "This is what I want to build!"
The fact that I am visual in my creativity in that I need to "see" something before I can create something (even if it's in my own mind) is a characteristic I got honestly. From Grandma. She couldn't see it from description alone. So he took out some cardboard and drew his pattern for her to see and him to use.
The result is a beautiful picnic table and bench set that is as unique as he was.
When I was little, he used to tell me, "Matchabelli..." (as in, Prince Matchabelli perfume...I told you -- unique)...he'd say, "Matchabelli, you need to drink all that orange juice. It'll make your eyes curly and your hair blue." I'd laugh, and he'd look at me like, "What's so funny?" And then grin that precious smile of his.
Grandpa was the one who would squeeze me so tight that I had to hold my breath. I simply couldn't take any air in my lungs while he hugged me. Grandma would get onto him for hugging me so tight, but he loved me so much he couldn't help it. Those were great hugs.
Grandpa was also the one who, when I was four years old and loving the Love Boat show, promised me that when I was 16 he would take me on the Love Boat. And the summer before my 16th birthday, gave up his dream to take an Alaskan cruise because I had always pictured a tropical one, and took me and Grandma to the Bahamas.
He was a great man.
So, back to the picnic table.
Grandma didn't have room for it anymore, so she asked if we wanted it.
Um, that would be a yes.
Today was so much the perfect blue-sky-crisp-breeze-birds-singing-in-the-trees kind of day that we took a break from school to have lunch on Grandpa's picnic table.
Thank you, Lord, for a special Grandpa, warm memories, some awesome boys, and an uber-gorgeous day.