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Loosing your Marbles

Updated: Aug 29, 2022

Two weeks ago, I drove to Nacogdoches to spend summer break with my granddaughter Lily, a fifth grader. Since we really didn't have anything planned, each day unfolded much as it did when I was ten. We woke up when we liked, ate what we liked, and spent most of the morning poking fun at one another's hair and choice of clothes.

The first day, I scanned the Internet looking for cool things to do in town. They'd just moved from Fort Worth, and hadn't had the opportunity to scout out local fun spots. We had a picnic lunch at the arboretum and walked the azalea trail, and visited Millard's Crossing Historic Village where Lily tried the hand pump and corn husker. We made Shrinky Dink charms and shamrock-shaped cookies for St Patrick's Day. We didn't spend any time in front of the TV.

Since we didn't have television for most of my childhood, my brothers and I spent weekends and summer vacations in the creek catching crawdads, in trees, or playing with green-plastic army men in dirt and tree twig forts. One of my favorites, was a marbles game called "ringer."

You start with either a chalk line on the sidewalk or by drawing a 2 foot circle in the dirt. Each player choose 10 marbles (typically ones they weren't afraid of loosing) and their best shooter. The goal is to knock a marble out of the circle; if you succeed, you get to keep the marble. If you don't, your opponent gets to take a crack at it.

Shannon had Saturday off, and so we decided checkout the historic district and some antique shops. Lily stuck with me as I pointed at one old game after another shaking my head that they were now considered "antiques." We came across a Ziplock bag of about 50 Tree Frog Marbles that included a couple of nice-sized shooters. I smiled and handed them to Lily.

"Why are you buying those?" she asked. "Because I lost mine," I smiled.

I have a bid in on these beauties through eBay; now to find a steelie.

How to Play Marbles ( click here for a little refresher)

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