Tuesday, June 1, 2010
A Bird Fan and a Story
A year or so ago, I bought this bird fan at my favorite flea market. I couldn't believe I found not only a lovely bird fan...but one also connected to, of all things, sewing! Being a person who has sewn since about age twelve, or so, I am always attracted to vintage sewing items. Being a person who loves birds, I'm always attracted to images of birds. Here, in this lovely fan, I found both. On the front is a description of the bird, a Rose-Breasted Grosbeak, 1/2 natural size, a natural size rendition of this bird's egg, the artist's name which is J.L. Ridgway and in the upper left hand corner, the Singer Manufacturing emblem. On the back, more information on Singer Sewing Machines...'selling directly from factory to user.' And, to top it off.....pink roses on the front. It just doesn't get any better.
So, now I'm going to tell you a story. It has nothing to do with this fan....except that what I want you to remember is over this past Memorial Day weekend, we were to have a quiet weekend where we would sit on the front porch and relax...remember me saying that? Here's the true story of the weekend here at the Nest....just so you know.
It all began Friday night when my sister-in-law called to let us know they were going to be gone on Saturday to see her mother-in-law who is ill, but brother-in-law from Texas (my husband's younger brother) had called her saying he was coming up on Saturday with his son and two granddaughters (14 and 8 years old). They were wanting to see my father-in-law, who lives eight blocks from us and is 90 years old. But, of course, he isn't up for entertaining folks without help....that's where I come in. And, of course, I'm willing to do what needs doing as we are a family, after all. So, I plan and grocery shop on Saturday. Since they would get here late that evening, they were to eat out and we'd all have a big get-together on Sunday. And sister-in-law and her husband would be back on Sunday. Turns out they also brought their two grandsons, ages 10 and 6. Remember, I am not used to having any kids around. We had a house full.
I planned a nice lunch for Sunday, got up and started in the kitchen at 6:30 a.m. Since there would be twelve/fourteen of us, I set all three dining tables in my house, put food on to cook, baked a cake, then took a shower, and checked the email. By that time, my father-in-law and brother-in-law arrived. The nephew and his daughters came in about fifteen minutes later, all aflutter, hot and sweaty....turns out he had backed into my driveway, misjudged where the driveway was....and hit my mailbox...severely wounding it, but not killing it. The real issue was his wife's new car....scratches down the side, a dent over the taillight and the rear passenger window shattered to bits all over the driveway. Out we go with brooms, dustpans, an empty cardboard box to put the glass in, all kinds of tools to put the mailbox back in order....and the sun beating down on all our heads. I've never seen so many tiny pieces of glass scattered in such a way. And, it was so sultry, we knew it was going to rain.....so what to do about the open window? The next day they were going to be driving back to Waco, Texas, from whence they came.
We were all trying to figure out what to do, when my nephew noticed that Bob, my father-in-law had come out on the porch, started down my steps, grabbed the railing and fell.
It happened really quickly. Now, he's 90, frail, loses his balance, and can't see well. We've NO idea why he did that...very out of character as he usually stays in the house. And, me, nearsighted as I am and nearly out in the street could see his arm and blood just oozing. We ran quickly over, got him up on the porch while I ran to get wet towels. It wasn't pretty! The kids were all wired, we were all worried, I've got lunch going still and we decide Gramps needs to go to the emergency room. (It's a holiday weekend!) My sister-in-law and her youngest brother took him there (did I tell you she is close to a saint?)
Well, lunch was kind of a disaster......everyone ate, eventually, but it was stressful. The kids were fine, and since I don't have kid 'stuff' here, we got out lots of paper, markers, etc., and some made paper snowflakes, some drew, some watched tv. My refrigerator is now full of artwork! The six year old went out and started our riding lawn mower!!!
They made it back from the hospital in time for us all to go out to my daughter's house, where I had planned to have a pancake supper. So, the car had to be loaded with all the ingredients, bacon, milk, eggs, pancake mix, syrup...and so forth. That old navy man drove, with Bob in the front seat and me in the back. Halfway there, we had a rain storm so bad you could see absolutely nothing. We were virtually sitting ducks in the middle of the street! Slowly we made it to Kelly's and I found that my big umbrella was not in the car, just a small flimsy one. It was crazy getting Bob out of the car and into Kelly's house....unloading all the stuff was a very damp experience and I nearly fell on the concrete floors because my shoes were dripping water. What an experience.
I set up the griddles (Yes, they were in the car too) and began to cook six pounds of bacon. Yes! six. Then, when it came time to make the pancakes.....I realized I had forgotten the eggs. Of all times to forget something! I could have sworn I put them in the car. Daughter went to the store (bless her heart!) and we cooked lots of pancakes.
A good time was had by all....eventually! At 9:30 that night, we came home, exhausted. Why am I telling you this? Because my story on Friday was we would relax on the porch. Several times over the weekend, I kept remembering something the guys at work always told my husband....that the Eatons had a 'little black cloud' hanging over their house. Yes, we do, but I've always thought we could overcome that fact and I'm still trying.
So, this evening, I am going to sit on that porch...maybe with this bird fan....and picture what it would have looked like from the street if passersby could have stood and watched our weekend story 'unfold.' We won't soon forget it, that's for sure. Y'all have a good week out there! take care, pat
PS. No, I've no idea what my niece said to my nephew about her car when he got home...but I can imagine! ****Added at 11:36 p.m: I DID get to sit on the porch this evening for about twenty minutes. It was quite nice and I received a reward for doing it....hundreds of lightning bugs! They looked like diamonds sparkling in my yard, up and down the street, across the street in the church parking lot....just beautiful!! Oh, and I used the fan too!