Getaway to Portsmouth for the Fairy House Tour

Fairies have become popular in our house.  My daughter has recently lost her two front teeth and with the anticipation of the tooth fairy visiting as well as the excitement of her arrival, both my son and daughter have fairies on their minds.  Playground visits have morphed into pretend fairy play.  

A friend mentioned that Portsmouth New Hampshire hosts a Fairy House Tour based on the book Fairy Houses written by Tracy Kane. The tour is in and around Strawberry Banke.  We knew our kids would absolutely love to go and we were right.  We started in a section of the tour that was dedicated to grade school children's fairy house creations.  These magnificent houses were placed in a beautiful garden for others to admire.

Did I mention that dressing up as a fairy is highly recommended?  Both my son and daughter enjoyed checking out the details of these houses.  They would crouch down and yell "Wow!  This one has stairs inside! And furniture!"  We had fun finding out each creator's grade; some of them were as young as kindergarten.

After this section, we wandered (everything on the tour is within walking distance, even the parking) over to the houses made by adults.  Some of them were in herb gardens and others in the yards of the colonial homes.  The setting added to the magic of the day. 

After oohing and ahhing over these masterpieces, we walked (and skipped) over a little bridge to a field where we could build our very own fairy house.  There were tables set up with all kinds of natural materials.  They asked for a very small donation to use as much as you needed to build.  There were flowers and stalks, leaves and straw, and even lobster shells. We collected a few items and found a place among others who were also building.  Looking around at all of the groups of families and friends, we felt so lucky to be a small part of this wonderful day.

My daughter is book lover and really wanted to meet the author of the Fairy House book, Tracy Kane.  She was lovely. She had so much patience with all of the kids and took the time to meet each one.  She asked my children if they had time to build their own house and when they answered that the building was their favorite part, she gave them a smile and told them they were kindred spirits.  My husband and I were so grateful to her for the compassionate example she set for them.

The last thing we did was head to a the fairy ballet which was on an outdoor stage a few steps from the houses.  Young ballerinas took to the stage in beautiful fairy costumes.  After performing, they invited up all the children in the audience to participate in finale.  

It was truly an inspiring day that brought our family closer while exploring one of our childrens' passions.  In the car on the way home, my son and daughter started making plans to use the sticks, leaves, shells and rocks that they've collected over the years to make a fairy house in our small outdoor garden at home. I can't wait to see what they build!  

We'd love to see a picture of the fairy house that your family builds too!

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