Sunday, August 11, 2013

Childhood Memories

The house is so quiet.  Adam is at work.  Some kids are at their grandparents, some are at their Great Aunt's house, and two are on their way to camp. 

That makes only ten kids home.  Only ten.  And it feels like such a small bunch.  Crazy, hunh?

On the way home from church we swung by the elementary school to find out the kids' teachers.  Alex asked if his teacher was nice.  John convinced the younger boys that if she wasn't listened to, it would rain.

The other day I was reminiscing about going to my grandparent's house for the summer.  I loved it.  There was something magically special about their home.  First it was the pink rubber ball in the round spinning table with drawers when I was five.  I loved squeezing it just like my grandma.  And then there was my grandma's collection of owls and the little pink mouse eraser that bared my teeth marks because I thought it was a piece of candy.  Later on, it was the little Tupperware with lids that she let me play with.  I got to put real Cheerios in them that I snacked on while drinking my apple juice out of a little green can.   Oh, how I adored those little green cans of juice.  When I was older, around nine years old, I played with their old electric typewriter.  I loved to play office.  As if all of those things weren't enough, they had ferrets, made the best homemade waffles every week, took us to the library and the park with the coolest two story metal rocket ship, and my Aunt who lived with them would take us cruising down Beach Blvd. in Huntington Beach.

The memories I have of going to my grandparents are absolutely priceless, and I want to make the same kinds of memories for my kids and my grandchildren to come.  I let the kids bury a time capsule under the trampoline.  Until we had a horrible poison oak outbreak, the kids were going to the hills to build their tree house.   We've let them sleep outside in the trampoline too!  When I get the chance I research and shop for things that I think our kids would enjoy.  My most recent browsing histories include unicycles, spinning teeter-totters like they had in Little House on the Prairie, and pedal cars.  John jokes about putting in a slide at the top of the stairs or a fireman's pole in the loft-- or both.  John and I talk of putting in a zip line across our backyard.  I constantly look on Craigslist for pot belly pigs and turtles.

So what kind of things have you done or dream of doing to make your kids' childhood fun and memorable?

6 comments:

  1. I want very badly to build a fort/playhouse for my boys. We just don't have any space though. So I dream of bigger land where we can have a garden and fruit trees they can eat from and a playground for them.
    I also dream of taking them to Disney World. But really, we do lots of little things together to make memories. Visiting the zoo, having picnics, baking together and making tents under the clothesline. The little things matter, too!

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  2. Hi! This Saturday morning my family did something very cool. We went to a card board boat race on Lake Erie. It was neat to see how creative people were in designing their boats.A group of highschool students designed a boat that had blinking lights on it. It was a fun morning and I am sure my children will remember this Saturday morning for a long time, Pat

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  3. Just wanted to let you know that your unicycle idea is a great one! I bought one for my son when he was seven (make sure to get the right size) he practiced for months before being able to ride it. He is now 12 and still rides almost every day (a larger size one) and has spent the last couple of weeks teaching his younger brother (6y) to ride. Learning to ride a unicycle has really been a great lesson, it really seemed impossible at first but very slowly he started to feel he was making progress, five years later he is still very proud of his achievements on his unicycle. He can do all kinds of tricks on it now and even rides on mountainbike trails in the woods. Highly recommended but only for kids who won't give up on it! A zipwire sounds great too!

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  4. Hi Christine, memories are so important, even though my grandma and grandpa would be considered poor they always made sure to establish traditions with me. They would save all the comic strips from the newspaper in a drawer for when I would come over, they would make the same snack of saltines with slices of orange cheese melted in the oven, and we would always go hunting for interesting rocks, pick the best one, and shellac it with clear nail polish.
    For my own kids my mom purchased a mini tea set from the dollar store that is made of glass and she and the little ones have tea together, its very cute and the kids love it (ages 1, 4, and 5). Everytime we come over to my parents house they always want to have tea time, so simple but a memory im sure they will treasure.

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  5. One think I know was memorable for my two oldest were the "Film Series" we had. We didn't let them watch TV so this was special, and we'd have cold cuts and chips and treats like that and "picnic" in front of the TV. Our Film Series included a Marx Brothers series, a Charlie Chaplin series, a Silent Film series, a Mr. Bean series and then we got into All Creatures Great and Small and Jeeves and Wooster. These helped create our family culture.

    We also read aloud....and we took trips to the sites of the Laura Ingalls books and after listening to several Mark Twain books we went on a trip down the Mississippi. All good memories.

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  6. Hi Christine! We don't have a lot of day to day special things but we go camping two or three times every summer and for the last few years its been to the same spot...building memories and bringing friends to enjoy our 'secret find'. It's by a river so the kids have learned to be brave and endure cold and enjoy the current... while I have learned to swallow my fear and make sure they are safe but still let them attempt dangerous things. It's hard!

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I find your comments so inspiring! Thanks for visiting our family blog, and sharing your thoughts.