May Picnic Theme
Today, our table was covered with picnic cloths and baskets... picnic themed books and even a tiny picnic table. But inside the baskets, there were things, totally unrelated to our theme.
My morning crowd loves games, so I came with plenty of Picnic Bingo cards. Everyone took a handful of marker-squares from the small basket and got ready to win some prizes, from the large basket.
Lately, I've been sorting and clearing closets in my house. I've accumulated a lot of stuff over the years. I turned my stuff into prizes!
What fun to see these folks getting excited about the little goodies, that I've for some reason never used. As I headed off, my load was much lighter!
I simplified for my afternoon group. We did a little Bingo, but we skipped the prizes. We feasted on our own simple picnic of crackers and cookies, while we played.
These sweet folks were gathered around the table where I first began these gatherings, almost 10 years ago. My mom was one of the many residents, dealing with Alzheimer's. She taught me to just enjoy the moment. She helped remind me that there's no need to fuss over things like game rules.
So I joined these dear friends, searching the picnic images on the Bingo cards. We chatted and piled up squares and sometimes we noticed when there was a "Bingo!" and we cheered.
Enjoying the Table
We cleared the Bingo clutter and enjoyed some peaceful conversing. "What's the story about this man and woman, eating on the bench?" We all had ideas!
The books got some attention. Some studied the books quietly. I so wondered what their thoughts were, as they flipped the pages and sometimes smiled.
Some discussed the images with each other. I loved hearing these 2, talking about a picnic in the bed of a truck. That got the group talking about good and bad places for picnics. Most agreed that a beach picnic often sounds better than it is.
A Real Picnic
I left both my groups feeling content. Talk of picnics, always pleases me. A few days later, I was in St. Louis, the city where my mom grew up. She always knew the best picnic spots.
On Mother's Day I had time before I flew home, to stop and have my own little picnic in one of my favorite parks. Mom would have loved that. She inspired my love of picnics. Mom also inspired me to begin gathering with folks around the quilt, years ago. Thanks Mom!
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For 20+ years children have called it the Magic Quilt. They've danced and pretended all over these colorful squares. I've dragged it to schools, shelters and studios where children have climbed on top to hear Magic Quilt Stories and to act them out.