What Stands Out from Your Childhood Memories?

Photo by Leah Kelley on Pexels.com

Having Mom staying in the household has brought back a myriad of memories. I decided one day to list the first five happy things that I thought of when remembering childhood, followed by the five worst memories -if you do one side, may as well do the other. After a while, I likely thought of more but these are my answers. I think it’s quite fun to quiz yourself sometimes, or interview yourself. It can be quite entertaining! 😉 I’m going to bullet point these instead of numbering, as they are not in order of importance.

Positive Memories from Childhood

  • Vacations. Our vacations were mainly taken to Florida and these were my favorite. Usually to Panama City or Daytona Beach. I loved everything about it. I took stuff to do in the car like reading, puzzle books, small toys or gadgets. I loved the places we got to go out to eat. I loved the water, looking for dolphins, swimming in the pool, and staring at the ocean, the boats, and walking on the beach.
  • Pool Days. Mom and Dad had friends that managed an apartment complex and on Thursday’s if it wasn’t raining, we would get up early, clean house, pack our bags, and lunch and head to our friends house, who had a big long house amidst the apartments in Columbia,TN and was beside the apartment complex’s pool. (For those in Columbia, it was the Colonial House Apartments on Nashville Hwy). In the younger days, my grandfather sometimes took me to the KOA campground. One time I got sick from it though, some type of virus or flu, and we never went back, until I had a friend whose family camped out there and then I went again!
  • Christmas. Christmas was always special, a magical time. First the decorations. Coming home and seeing the tree all decorated and then the house. Everyone seemed happy and the momentum built both at home and at school for THE BIG DAY. I usually got to “put in my order” for Santa which would show up under the tree. And the gifts were so special. I loved having Mam-ma come in to stay. She brought fudge too. Someday I’ll do a blog entry about Christmas Day as a child. It pretty much happened the same way every year. I could do a whole post on this one. Maybe I will one day.
  • Breakfast on the Back Porch. It’s funny and only fitting that this would pop up as one of my first top 5 that I thought of: FOOD! I loved our outside family porch time. It was rare and different. I mean usually it’s too hot or too cold, too rainy, but some days the weather landed just perfectly outside. We had a top on the patio. And mom would fix bacon, eggs, toast, or biscuits, jam and molasses and butter, juice, cantaloupe a lot of times. I think it’s why I love breakfast so much. It was like a little celebration for weekends and holidays and down time.
  • Going out to eat with church friends. Our entire family would go out to eat after church with other families. The adults would sit at the table with adults and the kids would eat at their own table. We would laugh and talk and be silly. This happened mostly every Sunday and Wednesday night. It was always something I looked forward to.

My Worst Memories from Childhood

  • Tension in the household. Every household has it, some worse than others. Some for different reasons than others. Some on certain occasions. I think mainly the things I remembered were just daily being afraid I’d do something wrong to make someone yell at me, or slap me, or whip me. I was yelled at a lot, slapped at much less, but it was something you never forgot. I was in a very strict household, where everything had its place, everyone had their jobs, and everything went in a certain direction, and on a pretty much set schedule. Work always came first, play second. (That is not bad though!) Often there were certain raised voices in the household and it when it came toward me it made me nervous and anxious and afraid and I would cry. As I grew into a teen and began to exercise my own voice and opinion, it could be volatile and very explosive at times. I learned to keep a lot of things to myself so nothing would explode. The less said, the better. It was what it was. I am what I am. And while I won’t go into detail about it, I DO KNOW I WAS LOVED and I do think they were doing the best they knew to do to try and FORCE things to be a certain way. Some things just can’t be forced to be effective I guess. But that said, our home was mostly safe, secure, happy many days, as long as you kept your thoughts to yourself. :-). Maybe that is why I’m so quiet and introverted huh?
  • Mowing. I hated mowing. Well I liked it if it weren’t so dreaded hot when it needed to be done. I didn’t have to do it all the time but sometime I was asked to do it or told to do it and it was all fun til I would realize I was too hot. I would come in, drink ice water and lay across the bed to recover from nausea and just being overheated. Today I look back and think gosh – I mowed mid day sometimes and it was 90 something and it’s a wonder those times weren’t heat exhaustion.
  • Not getting to be in the band or play piano. I wanted a piano and wanted to learn to play so bad. I thought it was so pretty. But we couldn’t afford a piano. Then in junior high when the teachers told us about the band, I wanted to sign up so I could learn to play the flute. I thought it sounded so pretty. But Mom talked me out of it as I guess she had a bad experience. However, I watched my friends join, enjoy it, and had amazing experiences from it. I always feel like I missed out on that. I love music. I would have loved learning the scales and the new songs. It was an avenue I never got to explore until one day when I bought a keyboard. But then life happened and so I never really got to “go down that road” during my learning and formative years. Well, they bought me a guitar, but I just really didn’t have the desire to play it like I did the piano or flute.
  • No one believed I needed glasses. I remember while talking the neighbors next door, we did what kids do – “hey let me try on your glasses”. I was shocked at how much better I could see. I told Mom but she felt like I was just wanting to be trendy like my neighbors and didn’t believe me. Until the teacher sent home a note that I failed my eye glass test at school. I was having to pull my eyes sideways to read the chalkboards. I could always see when I did that. My grandparents took me to the eye doctor and to pick up my glasses. I will never ever forget being able to see the leaves on the trees. Everything had detail instead of just being blobs!
  • Getting lectured. One parent liked to yell, the other lectured. lol. And they were long drawn out explanatory with bullet points and outlines and pretty much a complete sermon or talk series. It went on and on long after I had gotten the points. I remember wanting to dig a hole or just be able to go do something else but I had to sit and listen – I’m guessing they lasted from 15 min to an hour. I’m not saying it was bad or good or was needed or not needed. I just remember not liking it. lol

So all of these things – again – not saying they are good or bad, not trying to bring judgment upon anyone. I just simply sat down to do an exercise and this came from it. I’m sure there were probably many good things I should have remembered first and I’m sure there were probably more horrible things that happened that I should have remembered also, but both sets of bullet points were truly the first things that came to mind! So they must have made an impression.

It is what it is. It is what it was. EVERY FAMILY has had its good days and bad days. Ours was no exception. What would YOUR childhood list of the “first fives” look like? What did you like or dislike about your childhood?

Other Updates

I had the best lunch yesterday from Santa Fe. It was their enchilada meal. My boss went out for take out and she asked me if I wanted something. So I got this meal and gave her the $ for it. Oh I’ll have to get this again. Nothing fattening about it huh? lol

I’m so glad this morning to have been able to sleep in a couple of hours. I’m about to dive into laundry, a shower, breakfast, more coffee, and fall decorating.

What are you all doing today?

Meanwhile in Texas

Awwww, I feel for my daughter in this moment. Bitter Sweet it is. He’s taking formula now that they are back to a busy schedule with jobs and summer over. And he is learning to eat table food and had been on baby food for a while. It’s hard to leave each stage behind, but in other ways it’s a relief. On to new stages, new ways, and new details to manage. It’s a beautiful process. It’s hard work. But so worth the time and effort and patience to raise a well rounded, patient, persevering, spiritual minded, mindful and productive human being. Love that little River Roo! And my daughter for the lovely person she has become. Katy is a good Mom and Cody is a good Dad. And they love their little Chunky Monkey!

Ya’ll have a wonderful day and I’m going to set about mine!

My Travel on Snowy Roads, Work Day, and Pantry Storage Ideas

My little Grandson is growing! He is six weeks and counting. Katy posted this a few days ago. I thought it was a sweet pic and she is looking great! They are getting more sleep now. She joined a program called “Taking Cara Babies”. (The lady that owns it is a nurse and a Mom and her name is Cara and she is a certified pediatric sleep consultant). I’ve mentioned this before but I’ve connected a link and given you the name of the program in case you know someone that needs information as to how to get babies on a schedule. At the time she enrolled it was $99 and she said “it was the best $99 I’ve ever spent. I wish something like that existed when Katy was born. We just fumbled about and figured it out and I have loved and guarded my own sleep schedule ever since, vowing I’d turn into a pumpkin if I stayed up past 9:00! But I’ve been thrilled to hear “how” and “why”. She has been given scientific information as to why babies do what they do. Katy has learned so much. So I wanted to share this program in case you know someone who could benefit from the same. It has helped her quickly and she has resources to the program for a year I believe.

Snowy Roads in the Neighborhood and Driving in to Work

I just thought of it, seeing the hood of my car in this photo, but I guess it could be dangerous being a white car on a snowy day. I’m invisible! So here was what I had to drive in to get to the main roads! There are hills getting out of either side of the neighborhood. But the connecting roads were better than our road so that was good. George got it up the driveway for me (uphill). It took two tries but finally we made it. He took me around the block, applied brakes and such to show me how to test a snow road for “slippability” and it was fairly dry packed. The other roads had ruts. And the main roads and interstate were dry with water here and there for the melting. When I left it was 40. I waited until it got to 40. So I think I left around 9:30 or 10. And I worked until about 4:15 or so. Got a LOT done. I knew I had to do a lot when I got there but….I realized just how much I was behind.

The first order of business was printing everything that needed to be printed: PTO requests for the next Payroll, tax receipts paid, w-2 resends from requests that came in, check statements for the TN plant that needed to be stuffed into envelopes for 111 employees, and the list goes on. I also had garnishment sheets to work on for payroll as there were some changes. I did as much as I could and I am glad I have today to work on payroll related things as I have a ton of PTO requests as you can imagine from nearly every one of our plants b/c of the snow/ice storms that swept our nation. I have to look up their avg pay with incentive and make sure they are eligible and make sure they have the balance to take it and then put it in the plant’s payroll folder. So I’ll be doing that today and doing time sheets. Ahhhh I am so thankful it’s going to be above freezing all week so we don’t have to deal with snow, or at least much of it anyway. Some nights get down below freezing and sometime we have to watch for freezing fog but I’m hoping not this week!

I know it will be a looooong week this week as I’ll be working six days in a row. And then Friday I’ll be headed to Mom’s for a girls night. I will likely work enough hours all week to get off around 3 so I can get down there, and get our dinner picked up and get to her house before or around nightfall. I knew I was going down there the last weekend in FEB, and Mom had to remind me it was this next weekend. How did I not know that? I guess the last week was just a blur since we were iced/snowed in for 8 days. I just hadn’t realized time passed! I thought it was one more week away. So I’m looking forward to our time together. I’m taking food in when I get there Friday night and then Saturday we will go out to eat. She says she is READY to go SIT DOWN at a restaurant and eat! So we’ll do that. She does not want to shop, but I told her I needed to go to one store and buy a quilt ladder if they still have them. I think they were about $20 to $30 cheaper than buying them on line. On line they have to account for the shipping I guess but I want a quilt ladder for the den to put our quilts on. I enjoy them year round – sometimes the a/c in the summer gets to be too much for me and of course the winter chills and seasons changing. It’s something I’ll enjoy a lot and need to get them in their “place” instead of just laying around.

One of the things that surprised me of my drive in to work yesterday were the hills of snow on the side of the road. Our snows are usually not big enough to have snow banks on the side where the snow has been plowed.

Finished Organizing the Pantry Storage

Working on the Pantry has been a project I started a year ago, or was it two? I got some ideas from other bloggers and from Pinterest. Some of the ideas I already had in place. Our pantry shelves have deep shelves and it’s a lot of adequate space for us. We have plenty of room to buy extra things for back up. We use a lot of sauces and marinades and keep a lot of dried beans, pasta, and grains on hand. I don’t care so much about how it looks so much as “can we find what we are looking for”, “can we reach it easily”, and “grouping like things together”. It’s NOT perfect or pretty so much but I worked on it some yesterday and I think we have it better organized. I did NOT work on our back up supplies and I probably won’t as George usually likes to organize those things (hot sauces, condiments and such) but I did work on these shelves here a bit. Here are some things I’ve used or done to organize the pantry:

  • Lazy Susans – for Canned Veggies and Soups – Not all fit of course but I try to put canned veggies that we use as sides with our meals on them, as well as soups and then let the canned tomatoes and sauces and stuff hang to the back.
  • Dinner trays – The dinner trays slide in and out to where you can see what’s behind and look for things. This was a great idea. You can see below that I put the baking things on the right, including the jello, lol. On the left tray are canned chicken and tuna, soup and pasta kits. I mainly put those there so it was at eye level and we can use those up soon and not let them sit. We tend to forget about such “kits” when we are planning dinner for some reason.

  • Little shelves so you can double your space. I have pasta and some rice on the bottom and the topped is filled with dried beans of all kinds.
  • Baskets can be pulled out to see what is in them. WE have all kinds of rice and quinoa in the basked here.
  • I have bought into some air tight storage systems for oats, sugar, flour, and I had one left over so I put tea bags in it. WE have two lifetimes of tea bags in our house, LOL! George says he loves his little corn meal container that he has used for years and didn’t want me messing with it! (Story of my life). So he has his little corn meal container in there. Mainly he said when he uses this he knows how much he is adding when he pours from it.
  • And it’s nice to have some of these lights to use when finding things. But you have to remember to turn them off.

So I finished that project up with my storage containers as they arrived yesterday. It’s not the “prettiest” organization but it IS functional and I’m happy with it! I think the only thing I might add is a little container for sauce/spice packets but honestly I think if we lay them about we end up seeing them and using them more often. I through away a bunch of OLD flours too, stuff from 2014 to 2018 that I had no idea it’d been in there that long. Our daughter used to bake a lot and when she left – enhhhh we just don’t bake much! I filled up the trash can and made a lot of room! So be sure and check your expiration dates.

And now I must get ready for work and head out! What are you doing today on this fine Monday?

After work we are meeting up with my SIL and BIL nearby for a beer and dinner. Looking forward to that so much! (Reasons to love Monday! It doesn’t have to be a Friday to enjoy some fun!)