Saturday, May 30, 2009

This is the only childhood your children will have

Just a nice little quote I heard on Relevant Radio. Just a little reminder to: go to the park, cuddle up for a read-a-loud, have a tea party, build a fort out of sheets, etc.

What good memories do you have from your childhood.

Me? My dad taking my sister and I to a store on the toboggan after a major snow storm shut down the city (recently I discovered that he took us to the liquor store because my mom needed a break - from us - since we were causing her to go nuts with us stuck in the house).

My dad promising to catch me if I would only jump off the swing at my cousins house. I was too scared and wouldn't do it, until a few minutes later, only I hadn't told my dad. And he didn't catch me. It hurt. I got the wind knocked out of me for the first time.

Then they put me in the car to leave, closed the doors, and went inside to get my sister. Then their 2 huge huskies were jumping up at the windows barking. I was terrified.

When I was 4 or 5 I was playing in the grassy area across the parking lot from our apartment. There was a girl there flying a kite. She asked me if I would hold it for her while she went for lunch. Would I?! Yes!!!! That was so awesome......but she never came back. And my parents watched me out the window for 1 HOUR before rescuing me!

My mom and dad used to be caretakers in an apartment building. It was so cool to go with my mom while she did things like clean the windows. Once when I was with her I saw this giant Easter Bunny under the stairs (an adult man in a bunny suit). When he saw me he put his finger up to his mouth in sort of a shhhh don't tell anyone sign. I kept his secret. My mom still has no idea about this one - a little fishy don't ya think?

My dad and I made a ladybug cake for our girl scout bake auction. It was by far the coolest cake - and my dad bid so much money for it because I was a bit distraught that we would have to give it up.

My parents would give us each a quarter and let us walk to the DQ alone when we were young. It was next to the apartment complex. One day, the nice owner sent us back home with a note (actually it was a bill). We never had enough for the tax but she always gave us our ice cream and kept tabs.

And....I was swimming in the outdoor pool with my mom when I was maybe 6 or 7. I told her I needed to go back to the apartment to get something. While there the phone rang. It was someone from Disneyland. They promised me that all my family had to do was go out to CA and they would put us on the Mickey Mouse Club show. I ran back to the pool so excited. But I didn't know why my mom and the other adults just smiled. That was quite the trick!

I was about 5 years old and decided I was big enough to visit a friend in the other wing of the apartment complex all by myself. My mom walked me to the internal entrance of the other wing and let me go while she went with my sister somewhere else in the complex. My friend wasn't home! I ran all the way back to my apartment (it was common to leave it unlocked back then) and jumped in bed and hid under the covers crying (did I mention it was storming, loudly). My mom came back and cuddled me and told me it was just God and his angels bowling. And, the really loud thunder? That was God getting a strike! I still think of that when I hear a storm today.

I remember bowling in the hallway with the neighbor John John (did I mention his mom was the manager, my folks were the caretakers? Do you think other kids would have gotten away with this?)

Trick or treating in the nice warm apartment building and filling a pillow case with candy, going back to empty it, and going again. And, since my parents were caretakers - they had the keys to the other building as well!

Lastly, 'cause I'd better quit soon....I remember playing with a wagon, my sister, and my friend John John (yeah - they really called him that - to distinguish him from his dad John). Anyway, we lived in apartments on a 45 mph busy road and it had grassy hills along the busy road. We took turns driving the wagon down the hills, giving my younger sister rides. She insisted she could do it alone. Finally we let her try. She went right into the busy road and thank God the cars came to a screeching halt. John John and I grabbed her and the wagon - and never told our parents.

I could go on and on, but the point isn't the major events from my childhood that I often think back on. It's the small things, it's the relationship things. So, the next time my 4 year old wants to have a tea party (we do it for lunch 1X/wk) maybe we'll invite her dolls and dress up or something! This really is the only childhood our children will have...

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