My parents are in the process of clearing out my childhood home as they prepare to sell it sometime in the (hopefully near) future. As they recently sorted through rooms of stuff, they packed up and set aside a few boxes of “treasures” that belonged to me. Most of the stuff has been junk (broken toys, old postcards, erasers, etc.), some has been hysterical (old Harriet-the-Spy-type journals, a copy of my school newspaper, letters from penpals), and a few things have been just right to pass along to Natalie . The best find so far was my old Whitman deck of Old Maid cards, which Natalie has been obsessed with since laying eyes on them a few weeks ago. We play several hands a day, and anyone who sets foot in the house is immediately pestered into playing a game with Nats.
Natalie has very specific favorites in the deck, most especially Careless Carrie (she calls her “Casey Carrie”) and Ballet Betty (“Betty Ballerina”). She insists (politely!) that as soon as anyone in the game finds the match to those cards that they be placed in her pile–she just can’t stand to be without them in her stack of matches.
The biggest challenge in the game had been helping Natalie master holding a big fistful of cards in her little hands. Especially in a 2-player game, there were simply too many cards for her to manage without assistance. When her Bampa and Mimi got into town a little over a week ago, they quickly fixed the issue by creating a personalized gameboard for Nat’s cards. An old piece of wood with two slits made with a circular saw (and the help of a label maker) created the perfect solution. Now Nat stands all of her cards up in her board and can see to make her matches & has cards at the ready for others in the game to pick.