Redneck Review

Monday, June 27, 2005

Childhood Memories

I have been tagged by Redneck Diva for the Childhood Memories
meme, so here goes:

Five Things I Really Miss From Childhood

1. Christmas Eve-the anticipation can not be matched in adulthood.
My mom said when she was a kid, the neighbor would come over
and ask the kids to come to their house for some cookies and hot
chocolate. Every year, she and her three brothers went, and every
year when they got back home, Santa had been there! Oh, the bad
timing! We went to Grandma's (Mom's mom) every Christmas Eve.
That whole side of the family was there. The kids always got
presents from everyone, and the adults drew names. The best
present I ever got there was a little cardboard box full of Barbie
clothes. Grandma always cooked up a pot of chili, and we had
hot dogs, Oberle sausage, cheese, crackers, cookies. We drove
home listening to Christmas songs on the radio. Every time, I would
try to lie awake to see Santa. As the years went on, I was sure it
was really my parents, so I would try to stay awake to prove it.
No such luck. I was never one to snoop for presents. I liked to
be surprised. Christmas morning we were up at the crack of dawn
(or before) to open presents. Stockings first. Then the loot under
the tree. After that, we went next door to Grandma's (Dad's mom)
for breakfast and presents with that side of the family. What I
remember most about this is that Dad and Grandpa did the cooking.
They cracked the eggs into a glass, added milk, and stirred. That
seemed wrong to me. And speaking of wrong, Grandpa put salsa
on his scrambled eggs, and ketchup on his biscuits and gravy. He
always had a jar of pickled pigs feet in the fridge, too. And he was
thin as a rail. No wonder, with a diet like that.

2. Scholastic Book Orders-OK, we've pretty much established that
I was a geek. I LOVED to read. I couldn't wait for book order day.
I usually got 3 or 4 books. Sometimes I snuck a few paragraphs by
lifting my desktop like I was getting a pencil or some paper. I also
loved the time after lunch recess when the teacher read to us to
calm us down. The Bobbsey Twins, The Boxcar Children, Little
House on the Prairie series, all were quite absorbing.

3. Summer of Driving-you know, that first summer you have your
license. You can come and go as you please. We went swimming
at the slime pond, a lake left by the St. Joe Lead Company after
mining all the good stuff out from under us. This was in the days
before the state park. To get there, we had to go to the Sports
Complex and take a little dirt path across this very fine dust until
we reached Monsanto Lake. I don't know how that name came
about. This road was not marked, you just followed the tire marks
of other cars, hoping they had gone to the lake and not off to cut
donuts. We spent the day at the lake, floating on air mattresses
in the shallow water, anchored by resting the head end on the
sand. It was a great time to talk about who was dating who, who
was stalking who, who was breaking up, etc. These were always
girls only trips. At night we would cruise back and forth though
town, honking at our friends. Sometimes we took my yellow
Chevette, sometimes my friend's brown station wagon, or our
other friend's cream-colored Plymouth Valiant.

4. Endless summer-didn't it last forever when you were a kid?
We didn't wear shoes except for thongs. Yes, people, back in
my day, thongs went on your feet, not up your butt. Who started
this infernal nonsense, calling thongs "flip-flops" and panties "thongs?"
We always had something to do: ride bikes, explore the creek,
make clay pots, play army, play ball, play pool, ride the wagon
down the hill, play kick-the-can, swing, play doctor (!), go to
the pool, the candy store, the library, the roller-skating rink, pick
blackberries, go camping, go to Grandma's, a Cardinal's game,
sleep outside, play Johnny West horses, sew horseblankets for
all the horses, cook marbles in Grandpa's basement. There was
never a dull moment.

5. My neighborhood-it was a quiet street where we could ride
bikes or sleds in the road. We could walk to the library, or the
candy store, or to school. There were 7 houses on our block,
and 5 had kids and another was my grandma and grandpa.
There were 15 of us kids, various ages, so always someone
to play with. In the afternoon, the Sug's Sweet Shop van cruised
the neighborhood, ringing a bell. We always bought sno-cones.
In the evening, it was the Mr. Tastee Freeze truck. This was a
peaceful, no-stress, neighborhood. People owned their homes,
went to work, mowed their yards, all with no bickering.

I'm not going to tag anyone with this meme. If you want it,
take it. I am done with it now.


  • At 3:04 PM, Blogger Redneck Diva said… do you cook marbles?

    Oh my GOSH - you were a Scholastic Book Order Nerd, too??? My teachers had to give me those at the end of the day because I would spend the day reading it over and over again, circling the ones I wanted and planning how I was going to convince my mother I needed all 12 books I had picked out.

    During the summer I'd read a Bobbsey Twins book a day, sometimes two, if Mom would lose track of me and realize I'd done nothing but read all day. She'd literally wrench the book out of my hands and tell me I had to do some physical activity before she'd give it back.

    Thanks for doing this one, even if you hated it. Which I'm pretty sure you did. *wink*

  • At 4:09 PM, Blogger Hillbilly Mom said…

    How to cook marbles:

    Get an old coffee can, and fill it half full of water. Put in enough marbles to cover the bottom of the can (the clear marbles). Set the can on a burner on the stove in your grandpa's basement (totally unsupervised). Turn on the burner and cook until you hear the marbles crack, or until you think they are done. Don't lean over the can while they're cooking, because sometimes they explode. Leave the can until it cools. Take the can outside and pour out the water. Everyone claims which marbles they put in (this may take a while). Pick up your pretty sparkly marbles with a million cracks running through the glass and take them to trade with the boys, who all live on the other side of the street. Enjoy.

    Amazing that DFS didn't remove us, the things we did back then!!!

  • At 10:51 PM, Blogger Redneck Diva said…

    Ooh ooh ooh!! I wanna cook marbles!!! That sounds like FUN!! I am SO teaching my kids that one.

  • At 11:36 PM, Blogger arootdigger2 said…

    I had a few marbles and got more, when one kind boy let win some marbles from him. I don't know if any of the other kids knew about cooking marbles. Explain to me why anyone would want to trade for a cracked marble?

    I was a reader too. and wished for those books. I got one special one every year. So I had to use the library and carried a stack of books home, which made me regret the check out of so many. I could barely carry them off the bus. tee hee

    Do you love the chinaberry [msp] beautyful catalogs they have now or did.


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