THE BLANKET

My dollhouse was holy.  No one was allowed to touch it.  I would know in a heartbeat if something was out of place.  I made a braided carpet for the living room.  I had a table and chairs for the kitchen.  But I never acquired kitchen appliances.  And I do not recall having a dollhouse bathroom.  I drew pictures and hung them on the walls.  I cut out a watch out from a magazine and hung it on the back of the bookcase and it served as a clock.  There were no stairs.  It didn’t look that much different from our apartment.  But no one yelled in my dollhouse.  In fact, no one spoke.  It was quiet.  It was perfect.  

I was six years old before I met her.  She finally came from Israel to meet her grandchildren.  My bubbie came on a Sunday, her head covered.  But when she was getting ready for bed, she took her kerchief off and I saw her brush her hair.  She did not have one gray strand.

Monday morning came and I had to leave for school.  I was reluctant.  No one had showered me with love before.  No one blew kisses at me and smiled warmly.  This grandma, however, was not shy and she squinted her eyes, kissed my forehead, and said:

“Ai, geshmackta!” 

I thought that geshmackta was the name for the type of kiss she gave me, her lips closing in with a smack and warmth that started at the site of the kiss and penetrated my soul.  It was only a little while ago that I came to understand that: “Ai, geshmackta” means “Oh, delicious!” inYiddish and that this grandma, who did not know me, was calling me “Delicious!”

When I came home that Monday late afternoon, my bubbie was gone.  She went on to visit her other grandchildren.  But when I went to my dollhouse, there was a bright pink and cornflower blue blanket on the big bed.  Evidently my grandmother had asked my mother for scrap yarn and she took the time to crochet that blanket for me.  I learned another important lesson about love that day.  I realized that even though my grandmother could not communicate with me in words, she “got” me.  She recognized how important that dollhouse was for me.  She chose to make me something to show me that she understood me.  And I learned what loved felt like.

Maybe that is why I learned how to knit and instead of making sweaters I focused my efforts on making afghans  and throws for all the people who I love.  When my daughter went off to college, she went armed with a beautiful wool blanket so she would be warm even if the dorm was drafty.  When my daughter got engaged, I asked her to pick a pattern and colors and I made her an afghan as part of her engagement gift.  When my grandson was born, I made him a cotton baby blanket and a wool blanket for the carriage.  Then I made him a throw when he moved into a real bed.  I just finished a blanket for my granddaughter.  It is a dusty teal, the perfect color to offset her light complexion, burnt sienna eyes, and strawberry blond curls.  

My granddaughter aptly calls blankets “cozies.”  So, I am giving her the teal blanket for her third birthday.  And I have a date with my granddaughter.  On her seventh birthday, I will take her to the knitting store and teach her beginning knitting.  On her tenth birthday, I will help her make her first afghan.  

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THE DOLLHOUSE IS FINISHED!

I finished the kids’ room.   For those of you who remember the baby shower – these dolls have a Merimekko elephant wall hanging.  And like the original, that wall hanging dictated the room decoration.

Anyone want to play dolls with me?

The Kitchen Reno is Done

My daughter has a galley kitchen.  Hers is modern and sleek. This kitchen for the HABA doll family is the exact blueprint of my daughter’s  kitchen even if it is a bit old- fashioned.

The kitchen has two openings, just like my daughter’s so that the HABA doll brother and sister can run through the kitchen just like my grandson and granddaughter do.  The young dolls can drive their doll parents nuts just like my grandkids drive their parent nuts – especially when they are trying to get dinner together.

The HABA mother doll can now yell:  “Get out of the kitchen!”  WHAT FUN!

The Kitchen is Still Under Construction

Why should this renovation be any different?  The clients are complaining that the walls are not squared off and they are still in the process of picking out tile.  Plus there is a brick wall, they may want to expose.  They have opted for open shelving to hold and display their water bottle cap plates.  They will be eating out for a while till the kinks are all worked out.

A CITY LIVING ROOM

My daughter wanted to move back to our lovely suburban town but found that she was locked out price wise.  We wanted to sell our house and move back to a city apartment and found that we were locked out price wise.  I am tired of my beach cottage look.  I would go for the urban if I could.  AND I CAN!  AND I DID in my little HABA world.  Notice the exposed brick wall and rustic/urban wood flooring.  SO sophisticated and so cozy at the same time. I think I will be spending lots of winter hours here in this living room.  Who wants to come over and play dolls with me?

COZY? CUTE? or just plain CRAZY?

OK.  I must confess – I am on Tylenol with codeine because I had to have tooth extracted.  I had a hairline crack under a cap BUT the tooth totally collapsed and I saw stars every time I bit down.  So, I am a little out of it.  So you tell me:  Is the dining room I created for my granddaughter’s dolls COZY?  CUTE? or just plain CRAZY?

And aren’t these HABA  grandparents dolls something out of Heidi?

My daughter asked me to take care of my granddaughter for a whole day – because the child care will be closed and I am planning to play…DOLLS!  I don’t know who will enjoy it more but I think it will be ME!

I FINISHED MY BATHROOM REMODELING! It cost me $ 2.00!

Anyone who knows me, knows that we spent years gutting and redoing our tiny beach cottage.  We did room by room to keep the costs and upheaval down.  And now, 23 years later, the back bathroom needs to be updated.  The kitchen needs upgrading.  And I do NOT want to spend the the time and effort and money that will take.  I dream of a NYC loft.  Well, thanks to having a granddaughter, I have found my outlet.  I tiled behind the bath and the floor.  I “painted” the walls and gave this bathroom the modern, urban look I am so into now.  The remodeling cost me all of $2.00 and it took half an hour.  I am onto remodeling the bedroom!