January 2, 2009

The Greatest Generation's Nurseries, Cont'd

I suppose I could write about how, now that K2 realizes we pick the food up from the floor and put it back on her tray, she's started refusing to eat in her chair, and would rather get down and eat the food straight off the floor, thank you very much.

But the intoxicating lure of 1940's-era nurseries as documented by LIFE Magazine is too strong. Just. One. More. Celebration. of the. Greatest. Generation...


The Generation of British mothers, for example, who would drop their kids off at nurseries while they went to work in factories or other aspects of the war effort while the menfolk were off fighting. Nurseries which, thanks to German rockets and air raids, kept kids underground for so long, their bomb shelters had bunk beds--whoa, did someone hand-weave all that safety netting?--and sun lamps to keep their vitamin D levels up. Nice goggles.


And the Generation who generated photos with such awesome captions as, "Girl handling jigsaw in workshop at nursery."

Search LIFE Magazine's archives for Hans Wild's 1944 British nursery photos [life]


When our daughter was five, she ran a pen along a two by three inch patch on the pine dining room table, neatly following the grain.

After pointing out that this is not how we treat furniture, we got out the stain and verathane and had her repair the damage, a process she found quite interesting, and mastered quickly. Never had a problem again.

I'm sure someone thinks I should be sent to jail for this, but, really, it worked out just fine. For the record, though, supervision is good when dealing with noxious chemicals and hand tools.

I love the workshop photo.

The German-American preschool that we're currently looking at has a woodshop area with real handsaws, hammers and nails. (I'll have to check again for a jigsaw.)

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