Summer is for tea parties.

P1100600teapotWarm weather means that if we have any grandchildren around, we can have tea parties outdoors. The other day at Scout’s suggestion I made tea from what could be had in the garden: lemon balm and three kinds of mint.

Ivy and Scout and I sat on the patio with our little plastic cups of tea. Four-year-olds think the sugar cubes are the main event, and the toddler just wanted to put her chocolate kisses, cherries, and cubes of cheese into her cup.

P1100601ivytea

 

When I had my head turned she put cherries into my tea as well. Soon she had moved on to the washing-up, which she liked even better than the dining (or soup-making) part.

 

Ivy wash 6-14

Unfortunately, chocolate doesn’t come off with cold water.

P1100609 kids alyssum 6-14

Later in the day I sheared the alyssum and the kids tried to help with their little scissors. But the challenge of getting the piles of cuttings into the yard waste can turned out to be the most fun.

 

 

P1100621 can

P1100624crp

By the time Liam arrived a few days later, all the work was done, but he was well pleased with the toys and books galore. Little wooden people from his parents’ past were the most popular.

P1100643 little people

Some toys that I keep around you would not be able to find in stores anymore, because their parts are too small to be considered safe. If I had a child who’d choked, I might feel differently, but I am sorry that some of the most charming and fun playthings are now forbidden.

Remember Micromachines? We just ran across one of those this week and were amazed. They seem small enough for a child to ingest without much problem. Of course, I never would let the older children bring them out if there were crawling babies around.

Liam 6-14 play

This last toy that Liam is focused on was Kate’s 25 years ago. Many many children have enjoyed it since, but I am thinking of stashing it away so that all the pieces will still be there when her own children are ready to play with them down the road. This week she showed her nephew how to hit the little stick people just so, to make them bounce out of their holes. A good toy is a joy forever.

10 thoughts on “Summer is for tea parties.

  1. Tea in the garden with those you love….so many moments in life, like the visit of a bee to a flower,not in themselves lovely but adumbrations of an altogether other order of beauty…

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  2. Aw, look at that little sprout reaching up to put her clippings in the can. They love to help! Old toys are the best. I have a selection of not-very-fancy older toys, but they seem like new when the grandgirls come over to play.

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  3. I still have the toy boxes in my shed. They are like treasure chest to the grands.
    I loved those toys too. I am glad I kept those ones that my kids never choked on either.
    I love your tea party in the garden. There is just something nice about having the kids playing like that all around your feet.
    It looks wonderful.

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  4. I have kept some of the boys favorite little kid toys around, mostly for when we have little ones over, but also so the boys can have them when they’re grown. Because my family moved so much (military life), I don’t have any of my old toys, just a doll or two.

    Lovely grandkids!

    xofrances

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  5. I loved this precious post! I have stored away our little people toys … and many of the other favorites! It is a joy to see your grandchildren enjoying their’s as I smile to hope we may have similar precious moments some day. Having raised five babies, we have lots of sweet memories and many to make yet! So sweet of you to share these moments with your readers! (I feel hugged!)

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  6. My parents kept our wooden Little People and Micromachines while my in-laws kept Star Wars guys, Legos, and some old Playmobils. They also kept My Little Ponies and Strawberry Shortcake, but when those girl toys were pulled out of the attic, their plastic had decomposed and they were sticky and discolored. My kids love to play with these old toys – one of the things they look forward to doing at their grandparents. Now I struggle to know what to hold on to as my older kids are outgrowing toys. And I regret giving away some baby toys now that we have another baby in the house. I already passed on our plastic Little People to one of my sister-in-laws.

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  7. We found a micro machine garage in the attic recently, and today’s Little People just don’t hold a candle to those 30 years ago. Your times with your grandchildren remind me of my own, and they are just filled with joy.

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