I’ve left out so much of when the boys were young…so I’ll try to get back to those years.
We moved quite a bit when we were first married…up until we had the three young ones, and we moved to Muirfield Drive where we stayed for thirty-five years! And my husband and I moved to Langley and were there another 20 years…and I’ve been here in White Rock for eight years (in December).
Muirfield was wonderful, but there were some disadvantages. Every family had an ‘oldest’ child, boy or girl. We had the “youngest oldest “ in our family.. That can be a disadvantage if there were any disputes.
One of our next door neighbours had two kids, the oldest being eight, when Ra was four. They got the first television in the area… an eight inch screen. The boy told Ra to ask his mom if he could go into their place to watch Captain Puget. Ra came running home, all excited to see if he could go. Of course!.
When Ra got to the door, the boy said “You can’t come in! My little four year old was heart broken… and thats when we went out and bought a fifteen inch
We had a lot of the neighbourhood kids sitting along the floor to watch shows, but one was not allowed to come in.!
I tried to have things for the boys to do. I went to a furniture store where they made teak furniture. I asked if I could get some of the cut offs for my boys to make into jewelry. They gave me quite a bit. I had the findings, so they would make pendants that were really quite nice.
We spent a whole day tearing up newspaper…to make paper mache . I made home made paste and used that with the newspaper. We used a small piece of material over the top of a pop bottle and made puppet heads on them.
The next stage was to paint the puppet heads… Gary was three, still sitting in his high chair, and he painted his all green! I made clothes for them. Another interesting day for my boys.
Ra was writing poetry at this early stage in his life…all three had fun with their dad, doing parodies on some of the songs of the day. Some of these were pretty funny.
Now, with the hand puppets as the characters for the plays that Ra wrote he needed a place ‘to perform”. He recorded all the voices on the tape recorder, then did all the hand work as the tape played his story “back”.
His dad built a puppet stage for him, and every evening there was a puppet show at McGuires’. When parents started calling their kids to come in for the evening, the call back was ‘puppet show’ and the answer was always ‘okay’. Ra did all of the characters!
We had a Marionette that Mickey made. That’s the one you control with strings attached to it. His name was Johnny and the kids loved to see him trying to jump up on the chesterfield! He never did quite make it on his own. There was also a ‘giant’ marionette… both of them long gone. Might be at someone else’ home…who knows.
Mickey made toys for the boys…so did I. Mine were stuffed animals…his were boats, and all the buildings for the train set they got one Christmas.. Some of the toys were made after hours at the shop where he worked.
Ra was an avid reader. There was a mobile library that came to Bobolink Park ( used to be the bush that got cleared out.) Ra would pick out the books he wanted and they wouldn’t let him have them as he “wasn’t old enough” for those books.The principal of the school, Mr. Capon (?) wrote to them and Ra was to have any book he wanted! To this day, he is still an avid reader.