Over the years, her children and our other grandchildren have adapted this space to their own favorite pastimes. Now our smallest— 2-year-old Mia and Liam, almost 4—cook pretend meals, display their collections of nature treasures and sweep the porch in preparation for the arrival of pretend guests.
Another planned space for making the children feel at home is the creek bank of “Gaither’s Pond.” As I write this, our white swans are hatching their cygnets on the peninsula across from the nature observation deck we built on the stump of an old willow.
When we planted seedlings in our bare yard 40 years ago, Bill and I talked about how one day our grandchildren would play hide-and-seek through the trees. Well, now they do! And they all run down the same hillside their parents once enjoyed. There is something to be said for “staying put” in this mobile age. As hectic as our lives have become, we all need a place to which we can come home.