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"She seemed to come suddenly upon happiness as if she had surprised a butterfly in the Winter woods"
(edith wharton)


Thursday, 30 July 2009

I had a cubby house & other stuff, a meandering post of life

I was driving along through the mountain roads the other day.. off to do some Yulefest gift shopping and I spied a tiny little house in a backyard.. with a painted green door and I was whisked back to my childhood home... I had a cubby.

it was built from bits n pieces, odds n sods, stuff found on the scrap heap or laying around the yard.. by my grandfather and my dad.
it was just one room. an old painted door. two timber windows, one a sash window that was multi paned and the other a crinkly glass window that pushed outwards and was secured by a metal rod to hold it in place.... at the front door was an old terrazzo step... my grandfather nailed a shelf on one wall and hung an old light fitting from the ceiling although there was no electricity. this became home. it was like stepping into fantasy land.. over time it went through many incarnations, changing to suit my needs...
it housed my cane dolls pram, the wire dolls cot

and
my kitchen dresser ~ I am lucky enough to still have these three childhood toys

and I played house. i swept the floor and dusted the shelf...as time went by and those toys were packed away....

the cane pram is stored in our shed, covered in dust, waiting for a grand-daughter..not sure if that will ever happen..

I have three gorgeous grandsons and another due in 4 weeks!!

the cubby became my escape from reality, then I started to read and it became my attic where I ate apples, sighed about the state of the world and became Jo from Little Women.. books lined the shelf on the wall... time went on... where I learned of the 'free spirits' & suffered teenage angst, when the world was against me.. I 'lived' alone, burnt incense, listened to my radio and pretended that I was a hippy.. with my long brown hair and crocheted vest & beret.. indian beads and bangles adorned my teenage body...of course I had to trek to the house for meals, shower and to sleep, but it was my own space and I loved it..I grew up.. and the cubby was forlorn and neglected.. I moved, my parents moved and the cubby stayed... is it still there? i wonder. does it house a little girl just like me?

I have been playing with salt dough lately.. at our Wild Women gathering early this week, we made salt dolls...


mine started off as an Earth Goddess but morphed into a Goddess of the Sea..

maybe it was the influence of SealSkin SoulSkin from Women who run with the wolves..she was baked in the oven for 6 long hours, very low.. she has been painted and is now waiting for her gloss finish.. it was fun. I kinda lose myself when I am in my tiny art studio.

and another peek at my grandsons...

my grandsons: Thomas, Harry on my mum's lap and Jack.. I took them to see 'great Nan' a few weeks ago

16 comments:

Holly said...

Like Jo in Little Women...I loved that line. For, Jo is my favorite character...although I always hoped I would learn to be as sweet and dear as Beth.

linda may said...

G'Day, just dropped in to see what you are up to Rob. Glad I did, I loved this post. Hey, by the looks of that bread sculpture you should take up a bit of clay and sculpt with that. It is more permanent. Maybe someone a thousand years from now will rediscover a piece you made in an archeological dig and relearn about you too.
Loved your cubby house story. I had one too but not used as permanently as yours ( we moved around). Lovely that you had that continuity with it. Thanks for sharing that.
I would love to know more about your aboriginal guide.

Rose said...

I had one too, under the trees at the end of the garden with it's own little picket fence. Love the sea woman....

laoi gaul~williams said...

i always thought of myself as jo...i had a large wardrobe that was my hide-away~piles of books, a lamp~i would sit there for hours :)

amelia said...

I loved your story about your cubby. I didn't have one or anything like it, but I know the feeling you had when you were in it. I used to get that feeling under my covers at night with a book!!

Billie Jane said...

Ah ... we would call that a Den. You were a very lucky girl to have one, I never had a permanent den... but the need for one never goes away don't you think? My son who is going to be 20 this year spent the whole of the spring in the woods with his mates building a ramshackle house where they could go in the evening to eat pizza's and talk... it has been abandoned since July turned out to be so rainy.

Fire Byrd said...

I love these nostalgia trips, they just set me off down my own memory lane.
xx

Mel said...

I had a cubby house, of sorts, it was a shed-like structure in my grandparents garden..I remember wallpapering it with squares from a sample book....funny the things that come back to you...!!

Yes, the sea-woman is VERY cool...

Pam said...

God Robyn, mine was mallee roots. Can you imagine? The wood pile! It was stacked adjacent to a fence and under the nectarine tree, which made a great diversion when one was tired of being squirrelled away in such a knotty but cosy environment. I also had a teepee at one stage, which I loved - the smell of warm canvas and fresh grass..mmm...and I read Anne of Green Gables in the shadehouse Dad made, crying inconsolable tears when Mathew died.Thanks for these memories. The family home was sold last week so it's bitter/sweetmemories in many ways. Much love.

gemma said...

Robyn,
My cubby was a wide space in the hallway,like an alcove. I think you and I could still sit in front of the window sash in your cubby and pretend. Our imaginations in tact, maybe we could look out the window as if we were on a sailing ship.
Ahoy Matey!

peppylady (Dora) said...

I been getting things for what I call my winter box.
I believe I got all the grown ups covered. If some reason I miss counted I will add a few lottery tickets to it.
Now I'm starting the kids a winter box everything is under $2.50 a lot of the stuff came from thrift stores or place like that.

A new grandchild in 4 weeks how exciting.

Coffee is on.

Rita said...

My private spot I called my fort--in the rafters of the garage. Cardboard walls I painted psychedelic flowers on, an old piece of carpeting, lamp, radio, cardboard box shelving, sleeping bag, pillow, paper & pens, and lots of books. But, oddly, I never read Little Women! I think I was deprived. :)

Rapunzel said...

Adorable grandsons and oh, how I love that Salt doll! *swoon*

Sorrow said...

Oh what handsome boys!
you have every reason to boast with pride!
and tactile art of any kind makes me smile! am loving your sea goddess!

Moncha said...

Such lovely grandchildren, you must be so very proud !!!!
Have a magical day !!

Anil P said...

I'd always wished for a tree house growing up knowing well there was no possibility where I lived, instead imagined myself a part of the one from a children book series I would devour.

Growing up is about having own space to live out our fancies.

Did you happen to check on your cubby house lately?