Have I mentioned our granddaughters were coming for a visit? Well, the day finally arrived. Our son calls and they are just a few minutes away. My husband and I go outside to watch for them. We can see them turn the corner and watch their truck and fifth wheel pull up in front of our home. The home our son grew up in. The home where we have one week to create as many memories as possible. I say a prayer, “Please, time, slow down”.
The last time our son’s family made the long and expensive visit to our house Addy Bug, our first granddaughter, was four years old and believed that fairies lived in Nana’s Garden. Lilly Pickles and Lollipop had not been born. So, I want to make this visit to Nana and Pop Pop’s house is incredibly special.
Stories of Fairies in My Garden
Stories of fairies in my garden started when Addy Bug was just 2 or 3 years old. We were visiting our son and daughter-in-law and Addy Bug had become enamored with fairies. Movies, books, clothing, you name it. If it had anything to do with a fairy, you had her attention. When we returned home, fireflies were abundant in our back yard. So, I took a video of the fireflies. On the video I whispered, “Addy Bug, the fairies have arrived in my garden. There are so many of them I cannot count them all. Can you?”
I emailed the video to our son who showed the video to his daughter just before going to bed. She wanted to call me right then and there, but because of the two-hour time difference Daddy made her wait till morning. “Nana! There are 15 fairies!” She proceeded to name them all.
From that day to this I have been telling my granddaughters stories about the fairies in my garden. Needless to say, when Addy Bug visited our home the first time, I made sure there was a fairy house in the garden. Twinkly lights were hung in trees, and I created a scavenger hunt that would lead her to the fairy house. We had the most wonderful time!
Preparations were in full swing when it hit me. Addy Bug is eleven now. She understands that fairies in my garden are make-believe magic. I thought I had better have a chat with her about my plans for fairy visits while they were here and ask her assistance in making the magic happen for her sisters.
I called Addy Bug and asked her if she remembered the fairy house in my garden and the treasure hunt that led her to the fairy house. “Oh yes, Nana! And the twinkly lights in the trees! That was so fun!”
“Well, I want to create that same experience for your sisters when you come. I’m hoping you will help me create that magic for them. Are you in?”
Addy Bug, with a smile that told me she was excited about being asked to be part of the magic, vigorously shook her head yes. “I can’t wait to see you Nana!”
“Me too, Addy Bug! We are going to have so much fun!”
The truck rolled to a stop and the girls jumped out of the truck and just about knocked me down! They were here! They were finally here!
“Nana! PopPop!” They yelled followed by hugs all around.
The first thing they want to do is see Nana’s house. They wanted to see a basement. They do not have basements where they live and their Daddy had been telling them all about the basement where he played, created messy art projects, and made his first stop-action video.
Next, they wanted to know where they were going to sleep. After sharing a room with her younger sisters for the past few months Addy Bug wanted a room to herself. Lilly Pickles and Lollipop wanted to sleep in the room with the doll house. Addy Bug had told them all about the doll house. After putting their things away in their chosen rooms, Addy Bug asks, “Nana, have the fairies arrived?”
Lilly Pickles and lollipop’s eyes lit up. “The Fairies! Where is the fairy house?”
Addy Bug smiled. She had done her job well. She had been telling her sisters all about the fairies in Nana’s Garden.
Meeting Fairies and Finding Magic
“The fairies have been waiting for you,” I said. “They have prepared a treasure hunt for you. A treasure hunt that will help you find their house.”
The treasure hunt began at the small frog statue by the back door. The next clue sent them off to the stone angel by the white birch tree which led them to the stone mushroom and finally the fairy house where the girls played until one of them opened the door to the fairy house. There was one last clue. One last thing to find under a bunny sitting near a tree.
They ran about until Lilly Pickles discovered the bunny and a key. But what did the key open? The door to the fairy house didn’t have a lock. The clue left with the key said it was the key to the door where magic lives. Addy Bug was no longer playing along. She was in the moment with her sisters. “I know! I saw a tiny fairy door upstairs! Lollipop, bring the key. Don’t lose it! Follow me!”
The girls took off running. Up the stairs to my studio where I draw and write and where Addy Bug had chosen to sleep. The girls look for a lock to put the key in. They are trying to open the door in hopes of meeting the fairies.
“There isn’t a lock.” They said.
“I know,” was my reply.
Frustrated they opened the door to see what is behind it. “Do you think a lock could keep the fairies out?” I asked.
They looked at me and Lilly Pickles said, “I guess not.”
Lollipop didn’t understand. “But there is a key.”
“Read the clue again, Addy Bug. What does it say the key is for?”
“The key is to where the magic lives,” came the reply.
“And where does magic live?” I asked.
“Inside each of us,” Addy Bug smiled.
“I have a special gift for each of you,” I said as I sat beside my desk.
“Addy Bug, this figurine belonged to your great grandmother, my mother. It is a statue of a fairy holding a gift wrapped in a beautiful package. It reminds me of you because, like this fairy, you are a gift and inspire me every day.”
“Lilly Pickles, this small crystal bowl belonged to your great grandmother, your Pop Pop’s mother. Her name was Lillian, and you are named after her. Her father, your great, great grandfather called her Lilly Pickles her entire life. Like you, the first Lilly Pickles loved little rocks and colorful leaves she found when taking walks. She would imagine they were old or had travel far and kept the special ones in this crystal bowl which I am giving you because you possess a vivid imagination.”
“Lollipop, this figurine is a fairy holding a teddy bear. Like Addy Bug’s fairy, it belonged to my mother, your great grandmother. I like this little fairy because she is looking as though she never saw a problem that a little innovation could not fix. I am giving you this fairy because she reminds me of you, always looking up and seeing what other’s do not.”
The girls stood quietly looking at their gifts. I looked up to find my son standing in the doorway.
“Thank you,” I whispered.