The other day one of my friend's Facebook status's asked, "What is your happiest childhood memory?". At the time I felt stumped, I couldn't think of a memory that I would label as my favorite, or the happiest of my childhood. But since then I've been thinking about my childhood, and about moments from my childhood that I cherish. I thought I'd make a short list for my own benefit and so that hopefully one day I'll remember to fondly tell my kids and grandkids about it.
- Sitting on my Grandpa's lap in the driver's seat, on a dusty farm road, while he let me "drive". My feet were no where near the pedals, and Grandpa had us going only a couple of miles an hour, but I got to steer, and felt SO proud of myself.
- Running to the pool almost everyday in the summertime, often barefoot, jumping off the smoldering sidewalk and into people's cool grass at every opportunity, and THE BEST would be if we miraculously had 50cents to stop and get a snow cone from Hawaiian Snow on the way.
- Driving down the cemetery hill in Grandpa's big blue truck. Riding in the trunk of the car.
- Every summer picking out which 2 items we were going to plant in the garden and be responsible for (I almost always chose beets and carrots), then spending early mornings or evenings at sunset digging my fingers into the cool ground pulling weeds as my siblings complained a few rows down.
- Eating anything my GG made.
- Spending time at the cabin on Mt Graham, eating as many Twinkies as Grandpa could smuggle me.
- Getting to paint a wall of the storage room any design I wanted (I chose a "Disco Forever" neon colored theme and drew pictures of my favorite sports. It is still on the wall of my mom's storage room to this day, a perfect portrait of my 13 year old self)
- Jumping on the trampoline at Great-Grandpa Allen's house, drinking homemade rootbeer in glass bottles, playing the marble game, and riding his stationary bike.
- Sleepovers at Grandma & Grandpa's. One night GG was away and Grandpa let me eat my desert before dinner, as long as I promised not to tell and I felt like it was a terrific secret between us that I cherished. Sleeping on the trundle bed in Mickey Mouse sheets, listening to Grandpa type as I fell asleep. Grandma making a full breakfast in the mornings, complete with postum to drink.
- No one else in my immediate family was very athletic, (though Charlie did play tennis and is also great at volleyball), but my GG played softball and volleyball and my grandpa played basketball and football, and they loved sports, and I loved to sleep over at their house and talk to them about sports.
- Having my mom rock-a-bye me in the rocking chair.
- Water balloon volleyball, water balloon fights against the Battraws.
- Hosting our own summer Olympics, complete with homemade medals. The gymnastics competition was always fierce and usually provided at least one major injury each summer.
- Playing Star Trek with my siblings. I was always Diana Troy, and to this day, I still think I am a little psychic. True Story.
- Mom singing "Let us All Speak Kind Words to Each Other" and us just yelling louder.
- Singing "Singing a Song is Fun To-Do" for our Family Home Evening song every single time.
- Summer nights at the city softball fields, getting my white baseball pants dirty, eating a rope of licorice, and yelling "Hey Batter-Batter"
- The lava game, pretending the couch was a stage, and choreographing moves to all of Debbie Gibson & Paula Abdul's songs
- "Mopping" the floor with my sister, Emily. We would soak the whole linoleum and then use it as a slip and slide.
- Using our chore of cleaning out the fridge as a good excuse to have a food fight.
- Putting the Mickey Mouse tent up in the living room.
- Being impatient for the grapes to ripen every year and fighting to see who would taste them first (when we knew good and well they'd still be sour).
- Cul-de-sac baseball, and Ghost in the Graveyard, Redlight/Greenlight, Mother-May-I, Kick the Can, Sardines, Red Rover, and Hide & Go Seek.
Well, I said it would be a short list, and it is already too long, I am sure that to most people (other than my siblings), it probably wasn't a very interesting list. But to me, it's happiness on paper, and I'm happy to have written it down somewhere. Someday, when I'm visiting my mom and I have access to her photo albums, I'll scan photos that go with each of these memories, and go back and update this so that each memory has pictures to go with. but for now, I have to make due with what I have copies of here in MN.
What about you? What are your favorite childhood memories?