Cubbyhouses and perspective

We spent a lovely afternoon with some friends the other day. My girls had such a great time playing in the beautiful wooden cubbyhouse on the hill, leading to a slide down to the huge sandpit and a big trampoline.
The girls were reluctant to leave, (there is also a playground directly across the road from the house) and as we did a sort of sadness crept over me.

Image credit

We don't have a cubbyhouse or sandpit. Our trampoline is old and coming apart. Our backyard is a fair size by city standards, but there is no room for a swing set or other play equipment.
Yep, I was feeling like we aren't providing for our children well enough because of our financial situation.

And then today I received a letter in the mail that was such a timely reminder that I'm sure God is prodding me! One of my sisters - in - law is a religious sister and currently lives in Kolkata, India. She writes a letter a month and we get a copy. I'm sure she wouldn't mind my sharing these brief extracts from her letter.

"One form of poverty that I can't bear is to see women in raggy clothes that expose their bodies. Sickness, hunger, homelessness don't strip them of their dignity anywhere as much as nakedness does, and when I see them that glimpse remains as a very painful picture in my memory".

"... India which is a mix of great progress and primitive poverty. What is considered normal here is a shock to outsiders".

So I gathered a couple of camping tarps, headed out to the garden and cleared a little patch beneath some branches and between the lavender and arum lilies. One of the tarps went on the ground, the other suspended by branches.

Added a couple of girly faux flowers, patchwork blanket and pretty yarn, and that's it! They were so delighted and I was humbled.

I looked around the garden and gave thanks for the great things we do have, because there are so, so many.


softearthart said...

It sure is amazing what we can create with what we have, good on you, cheers Marie

::The Beetle Shack:: said...

excellent perspective! such wisdom xx

quilary said...

Lots I want to say to let you know that you are doing a brilliant job - using your imagination to help the kids use theirs, being there for them...and lots more.
I often have to say to our kids that we are so rich, when you compare us to so many other people in the world, but then I find myself wishing I had more to give them too. I will now remember to keep my perspective too.

Karen said...

What a lovely post - I am often amazed at how easily children can be pleased with something simple.
What mattered most was that you created a space, just for them.

The Handmaden said...

Thank you all for your lovely comments :)

Clodagh a.k.a. Isra said...

I am sitting here on my Arabic cushions catching up on some blog reading and I read this post. It brings tears to my eyes and I thank you for that. You see I often think about "stuff" for the kids but it is not what they need. The need me playing with them not the stuff (cubby house has been on my mind). I know we may never meet but I want you to know how much I enjoy your posts. They are grounded, humble and full of love. Thanks again.

Amber said...

Yeah! It is sooo important...more than be in a space of gratitude and appreciation for where we are. To be able to hold that space, no matter what happens during the day, is truly transformational!!

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