I thought it would be really cool to buy a train for our house. I know the boys love trains, and I saw those really big G scale trains when we were on vacation.
So I ordered the train, ordered extra track and set it all up. The boys, 6, 4 and 8 months love it!
But I guess I had forgotten how close to the floor a train set is. Ever think about that? Me either. I really haven’t done the “floor thing” in years. But when you own a train set, you don’t have an option.
I had also forgotten that trains have like 11,000 wheels and you have to get them all on the track at the same time. No easy task. And in order to do that you have to press your face into the carpet, remove your trifocals (they don’t work when you turn your head sideways) and try and get all of the wheels back on the track at the same time. “Good, all the wheels are on the track. Aydan, start it up!” I holler to the other side of the Christmas tree. “No, no not backwards! It derails when . . . stop, stop, stop. It’s off the track.”
Face mashed into the carpet again, all 11,000 wheels back on the track. “Okay Aydan, forward this time. Okay, good the train is running.”
“Weston, what happened?” “He wouldn’t let me drive!”
I guess I had forgotten that part too. If your brother is driving it’s your job to kick the train off the track. So I finally realized that it’s just easier to lay on the floor and pivot around on my belly from train wreck to train wreck. Train wreck in turn 3. Pivot, urrrrg! Pivot, urrrrg! Pivot urrrrg!
Then as I’m trying to get the 11,000 wheels back on the track I notice the track is moving! What? I look over and Godzilla baby (Gavin) sitting next to the track grabs the track (G scale!) in his tiny right hand and starts doing curls with the track in his hand.
I wouldn’t trade these moments for anything!
martin fowler says
since i first found your website, the first thing i check every day is your comments and tips, i live in a little village just outside cardiff u.k.
keep the hints and tips still coming i think you are one helluva guy. good luck
I appreciate that. I truly need to work on more new content and I will! I promise, but I am crazy busy at the moment.
Fred Collins. says
Be careful Mike, I have that same train set and several others. They’re addictive.
Quite a distance from you, but there is a great garden train in Valparaiso, IN. It is at the Taltree Arboretum. A local nursery, Samuelson’s also has a small layout. See YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fUbdpB4nfrc
They were a dealer in he past but I believe they have stopped.
The point is, Trains and gardens give great enjoyment, even together.
Thanks for all you do.
Thanks for the warning! I’ll check out the train video!
Cheri0, Georgia says
NICE! Love it! And a very pretty REVOLVING tree, too!! Great going!!
Keep the overalls…my brothers always wear them and one was killed in a car wreck about 15 years ago…I’d love to see him again in those overalls.. I too appreciate SO much your newsletter and all the help it is…and appreciate your approach as the good neighbor over the fence. 🙂 God bless you…
Mike you are too funny! You have a beautiful grandbaby there too. Keep up the good work. Thiose kids will remember that for a lifetime.
Bob Shoemaker says
Mike, Good to see as much action in your home,as in your garden. Looks like you have a warm home and happy grandchildren. With mine it goes so fast and they grow up too quick.So enjoy them.
Sue Gartner says
Your grand kids are adorable. I loved watching the baby squeal and reach out for the train as it went past. You’re a good grand dad to do this for the grand kids. Some day the kids will look back on this and realize what you would go through to make them happy. Fond memories live forever. Thanks for sharing.
Sharon Thompson says
Loved your video. Our grand sons are now 5 and 11 and love our trains too.We set our track up on a 4x 8 plywood oval with screw in ( removable and storeable) legs so that the GrandKids have it at waist height. this way they can rearrange the houses, move the people and snow the town with granular snow at will. It helps with putting the trains back on the track, because you only have to get down on your knees.
Charlie White says
Can’ wait to get in the Garden.
Charlie White says
Never had the chance to tell you how much we enjoy your articles. So now it’s time. Your the kind of guy I would love as a neighbor. Enjoyed the train story and video also. Been there down that. I can just picture you on the carpet squishing your glasses trying to get the wheel’s back on the tracks. We are getting 16 inches of snow right now, so can’t to get in the garden soon.
Please keep the emails coming. Oh, and aren’t those overall’s the most comfy things?
Charlie, I appreciate your comments. A while back somebody on this blog told me to ditch the overalls. But you’re right they are comforatable and I can work outside all day and not pull up my pants one time.
Judy Stroud says
Thanks for sharing that. Enjoyed the story and little Gavin is a DOLL!
I am speechless. I thought men like you existed only in fairy tales.
Patty, Okay, I guess. Are you on the right blog?
Thomas Perez says
It is so great to see kids having so much fun. The sound of babys laughing and squealing is like music to my ears. I think I need some grandchildren too.!!
Really sweet holiday memories -thanks for sharing!
Mike, have you considered putting together a model train garden? A lot of train buffs have used natural rocks and small plants so they can run their trains outside in a natural looking set-up. The track and buildings, etc., would be a permanent installation, and you keep the train inside when not in use. I saw a TV program about this once, and one guy even had a small hole in the wall of his house so he could run the train in and out. Didn’t have to go to the trouble of picking it up to take it in or out. The track inside the house ran onto a display shelf. This could be your next big challenge.
Diane, it has crossed my mind. Maybe someday. Right now I’ve got all I can do outside to get my nursery established. Once I have some of that done, we’ll see about the train.
Anita W Rohmer says
I have a friend who lives on the river. Beautiful property. She has a garden fenced in with a black wrought iron fence. ‘Has a train going around with a small pond in the middle. Her planting area is in the middle and at one end. We were watching the train and here comes a good sized turtle! The pond is for him! I just thought it was so cute! Maybe we’ll have one some day since the grandchildren are now old enough to help build it! HaHa. So maybe you will have one some day, too, Mike!
That sounds awesome!
I love your video tapes. My biggest problem with that is;1] I CANNOT download them and also have no way to convert a videotape to the printed word………
Hey Mike aren’t grandkids the best!! Our Desirae will be 2 on Jan. 14th and less than a month later we’ll have another granddaughter! Has really put a monkey wrench in my backyard gardening work/plans/sales but along with you I wouldn’t trade this time with the grandkids for anything. Not all the money in the world compares.with this time in our lives. Plants can wait but these moments with the kids will never come again…..so enjoy away Mike. I hope to resume the nursery again full time again in the future. Sometimes more important things just come up and we gotta go with the flow. Sounds like Christmas was fun. I love this new site and appreciate you so much. Thanks Mike.
Mike…Train derailments really suck huh?…that’s hilarious if your reading it!! I hope you had a nice Christmas. its been a little while since I’ve been on the Backyard growers site but i have certainly been enjoying it. My computer went bonkers, had a technician over to the house and he found several viruses, make a long story short he cleaned up & repaired in three days. Your newsletters are great, we can learn alot in a few paragraph’s. this spring Kim & I are going to start out with broom handles w/flowers. if we can turn a few hundred of them that will get us up and running with very little initial investment. lol….take care Mike!