Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Musing on Memories...

This is a picture of me in my favorite head scarf (I've got a flat twist style under here that I'll unveil tomorrow if it's cute. :lol:). I have yet to find another scarf that truly stays on my head at night. I'm not even sure what material this is, but it doesn't snag my hair or anything. But let me tell you why this is REALLY my favorite scarf.

I "stole" it from my mom. Yep. I'm one of those kids who takes stuff from her mom. :lol: I must have needed a scarf one day, and probably asked to borrow one. I'm sure she dug through her drawer of scarves and other hair accessories, and handed me this one. I can't even remember when I got it from her, but it's been around for a while. Every time she sees me with it, she says, "that is MY scarf!" We laugh...but she's not getting this scarf back!

OK...if she really needed it, I'd give it back. But really, I just like having little pieces of home with me. My sisters and I laugh about this all the time. My sister Pam has this ceramic bowl that we used to always use to mix up cake batter and other goodies. I have this old glass candy dish (and do I put candy in it? Nope! In college it held the pens and pencils on my desk). I don't now what my sister Shelley has. I think I have the old cookie cutters as well...and I can't even tell you the last time I made some homemade cookies that required cutters. But I got 'em! Once, I was at the flea market when I first moved here, and I bought these HUGE wooden utensils. You know the ones - the fork and the spoon that every black family had on the wall in the 70s? They reminded me of home. I think I paid $2. And note that my mom still has hers on the wall. For years, my mom forbade us from removing our baby books from the house. A couple of years ago she finally said, just take 'em! So now I have my baby book with photos, my first footprints, report cards from elementary school, and notes from my pre-school teachers. I love it. I know everything that's in there, but I just go back and glance for GP sometimes.

These are all the items that remind me of Bruce Street - that's the street we grew up on. We lived there until I was 19. In an old school colonial house. We had a basement and an attic, in addition to the main floor and upstairs. We spent so many good times in that house. When I go home I usually drive by...I wish my parents still lived there. Those were really the good ol' days. I was able to go to the bus stop by myself. I walked home from school with no issues. My high school sweetheart kissed me for the first time on the corner of Bruce and Salt Springs, while it was lightly snowing. When I was little, and it would snow really hard, my brothers would be charged with shoveling the sidewalk in front of the house, and our driveway. I had a mini shovel and I would go outside and "help" with the shoveling. I remember it taking 15 minutes just to get dressed to go outside. Then we'd be out there for 15 minutes and our toes and fingers would be numb, and we'd be back inside. I'm sure my mom just shook her head.

Bruce Street was the place of the late night Pokeno parties my mom used to have. The place where a lot of our holiday gatherings took place - Thanksgiving, Christmas, 4th of July. We had a huge backyard...sometimes my mom would let all the neighborhood kids come to our yard for Easter Egg hunts. If my friend Jemica and I couldn't finda 3rd person for double dutch, we would tie the ropes to the chain link fence back there, and the two of us would take turns jumping and turning in the driveway.

Our house was right at the crest of the hill. The sewer cover that was in the middle of the street, across from our driveway, was "home base" for kick ball and baseball. The utility pole across from our front yard was the start of many street races. The tree to the left of our driveway was the base for hide and go seek. Many games of "red light-green light" and "freeze tag" were played in front of our house.

Even when we couldn't go outside, we had plenty of stuff to do in the house. We had a sunporch off of the den. In the summer time if it was raining, sometimes we'd sit out on the porch (it was screened in). We used to roller skate in the basement. Matter of fact, I have a scar on my right shin to this day, from accidentally skating into my dad's tool box. At some point my parents got a pool table from someone, and we used to play pool down there. I had a love-hate relationship with that basement. I don't do creepy crawlies, and of course there were always spiders, and in the summer time, the snails used to get in. Blech! But, it was the coolest placed to be in the summer time, because we didn't have central air.

The attic was sweltering in the summer time, and freezing in the winter time. That was our place to accumulate our "junk." Stuff we weren't using, but we absolutely HAD to hold on to. My mom would wake us up in the summer time at 6:00 am to clean it out. The attic door was the basketball rim for me and my brother. We'd take an old wire hanger and untwist the top, then bend it into a circle. Hang the "hook" part of the hanger over the door - instant hoop! We only played with a tennis ball, though. And he always cheated.

I could really go on here for days...I had a really blessed childhood, and I think my brothers and sisters would all agree. I just love looking around the apartment and seeing reminders of it. I could be having a horrible day, but then I see that candy dish, and I smile.

What are some of your favorite childhood memories? Do you have "pieces of home" around your residence?


Tazzee said...

Thanks for sharing this with us.

My childhood wasn't great - most memories I like to forget. But my favorite was around Christmas when I was in the 3rd grade. We'd learned some Christmas songs at school and on this evening I decided to do a Christmas concert for my Grandma. The lights from the tree and fireplace were the only lights on in the living room. My Grandma was stretched out on the couch and I was just a sangin' I sang at least 5 songs and my Grandma acted like I was her favorite artist.

My older sister was in the kitchen washing dishes and periodically she would yell "Shut-up, don't nobody wanna hear that!" and my Grandma would get her, LOL.

My younger sister was living with my Grandma when she passed. She gave away a lot of things from the house which angers me to this day. But I managed to get my Grandma's cookbook. There are some handwritten recipes in there, some words are faded, but I love to see her dainty handwriting.

My Uncle called one day and asked me to ship it to him, I said I would but I didn't. Other than a few pictures and memories, that cookbook is the only thing I have of hers and I'm not letting it go.

Marilie said...

I don't blame you...I don't think I'd let that cookbook go, either! If he wanted some recipes, I'd be glad to make copies of the things she wrote, but I think the selfish part of me would have to keep it.

My grandma never used recipes. She used to always bake lemon merengue pies and sweet potato pies, and make pound cakes with lemon icing. My sister sat with her one day while she made the sweet potato pies and just wrote down what she used and what she did...so now we have the recipe, and that's what we use every Thanksgiving. :)

Serenity3-0 said...

This made me think u really have those memories and the minute details etched forever in your brain and will always have fond memories. My senior year I made this book of all my high school activities. I had competed for student of the year and you had to have a portfolio. I can't find it now and it bothers me that i can't find it. But I have my mom's photo album and of course I have stolen photos from my Aunt's home. You know what's crazy is when I was a senior, I took this one portrait and it is HUGE like artwork and my Aunt has it up in her house like it's a masterpiece. I always giggle to myself when I see it. I'm sure everyone that comes over who doesn't know me, well she probably brags so much about me. But this post is exactly why I do so many things with and for Tyler. I want him to think back on his childhood and have more memories than he can begin to think about. And I want them to be happy memories and for him to know I loved him even if I'm not here with him.

Marilie said...

My sisters laugh at me all the time and ask me how do I remember all of this stuff. I don't know! I just do somehow. But yeah, I can look back and my parents, my siblings, and my extended family all gave me fond memories. Even just the little things, like we would always crowd into my mom's room to watch tv, even though we had at least 2 other tv's in the house. That's the stuff that I will smile about and remember, even after my mom and dad are gone. :) Tyler will definitely remember all these wonderful things you guys are doing, and then he's going to pass that on to his kids. The four of them. LOL!