Friday, September 12, 2008

More E birthday

In following the tradition of Clare we return again to E Friday, where I post photos of my darling granddaughter E, because VG really likes to look at these pics. Well, I like to look at them also. So, back to my fuzzy camera used in Portland pictures.

We went up to visit our daughter in June (well, yes, I’ll admit it, we really went up to see E) and be there for E’s third birthday. I posted photos already of the little stove setup we made for her. But while wandering the neighborhood I also came across another find. Somebody a few streets over was giving away one of those little plastic play houses. Yes, sitting out in the driveway with a ‘free’ sign on it. Well, it is recycling Portland after all, and they do charge for each trash can and do not take bigger things, so I guess this is one way to get rid of old stuff. I was out walking and just came across it - I like to walk and E was taking her nap anyway. The house looked well used; the yellow and red plastic parts were faded, with some mold growing on the roof (it’s Portland, there is mold on everybody’s roof) but I figured we could wash it and clean it up.

So I walked back to the house and asked daughter if she would mind having it in the back yard. No objection, so I grabbed our son (also there for the birthday) and we went back to carry the thing. It is one of those molded plastic houses about four feet high and maybe three by four feet across inside. The plastic is injection molded so that the walls are about two inches thick, the pieces all interlock and are screwed together also. It also has a built in counter with two burner stove and a small sink, to make food prep easier.

Figuring it couldn’t be too heavy we picked it up and proceeded to walk down the sidewalk. Well, we found out one drawback to that style of construction. The walls were a two inch void, and after a few years the molded plastic developed some cracks along the seams. Well, these cracks were near the top, and allowed water to seep in. I hear what you are thinking - where did the water come from in Portland? Probably lawn sprinklers, yes, that’s probably it. So over time water leaked into the walls, but the cracks were all on top, so the water had no way to get out, resulting in the walls having about eight inches of water in the bottom. This we didn’t find out about until we started to pick it up, and found out that what was probably forty or fifty pounds of plastic now had an additional hundred or so pounds of water inside, with no way to get it out.

The two of up plodded along with the house. Since it was not new the screws were rusted, and I knew that if I tried to take it apart it would not go back together again and stay together, we carried it whole. Not an easy thing to do, as it had no handles and was rather large. And now we found out it was really heavy. After much complaining and quite a few rest stops along the way we eventually made it to E’s driveway. Grandma brought out a bucket of water and bleach and washed it down, and I got out a drill and made some holes in the bottom of the walls to let the water out (wish I did this before we carried it). So now this resides in E’s back yard, and she has a relatively dry little place to play outside. She promptly made us all a pot of tea (yes, I think it was bug tea) and cakes to celebrate.

She also washed the dishes up after we had our refreshments

The windows have shutters that close, in the above pictures they are open, but she likes to pull them closed and have some privacy inside. Later in the week we went to Ikea (B likes it, and we got some chairs and stuff to haul back to Vegas - no Ikea here, nearest one is San Bernardino, a few hundred miles away) and we also picked up a little table and some chairs that fit very nicely inside the little house. So E and Grammy would sit inside and have tea and talk.

As part of her birthday celebrations dad also made her pancakes. She likes pancakes for breakfast. These didn’t have blueberries, her favorite, but they did have strawberries.

So she was happy.

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