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Tue May 22, 2012, 05:16 PM

What is your best memory of childhood?

If you have more than one, pick one. If you have no good ones, post something anyway, if you feel comfortable about it.

47 replies, 4230 views

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Arrow 47 replies Author Time Post
Reply What is your best memory of childhood? (Original post)
Bertha Venation May 2012 OP
RFKHumphreyObama May 2012 #1
LaurenG May 2012 #2
Bertha Venation May 2012 #3
Major Nikon May 2012 #4
LoveMyCali May 2012 #5
benld74 May 2012 #37
MiddleFingerMom May 2012 #6
ohiosmith May 2012 #7
MiddleFingerMom May 2012 #27
Wait Wut May 2012 #8
GoCubsGo May 2012 #16
Wait Wut May 2012 #23
GoCubsGo May 2012 #25
grilled onions May 2012 #46
MiddleFingerMom May 2012 #28
Bertha Venation May 2012 #30
zanana1 May 2012 #9
femmocrat May 2012 #10
Bertha Venation May 2012 #31
baldguy May 2012 #11
lovemydog May 2012 #12
GoCubsGo May 2012 #17
blueknight May 2012 #13
applegrove May 2012 #14
rug May 2012 #15
rurallib May 2012 #18
GoCubsGo May 2012 #19
polly7 May 2012 #20
Bertha Venation May 2012 #40
felix_numinous May 2012 #21
Walk away May 2012 #22
raccoon May 2012 #24
LNM May 2012 #26
AsahinaKimi May 2012 #29
bigwillq May 2012 #32
TrogL May 2012 #33
trackfan May 2012 #34
Aristus May 2012 #35
RushIsRot May 2012 #36
geardaddy May 2012 #38
AnneD May 2012 #39
Bertha Venation May 2012 #41
Art_from_Ark May 2012 #42
Bertha Venation May 2012 #45
hunter May 2012 #43
sinkingfeeling May 2012 #44
grilled onions May 2012 #47

Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 05:32 PM

1. The one that comes to mind immediately is

When I was about five years old, we went to visit my grandparents for Easter. Since my grandmother was recovering from her hip operation, we weren't able to stay with them and we had to stay with my aunt. I have some fond memories of my time with my aunt as well but that's not what I want to share here

We had to visit the home of my grandparents for something or other and they had what must have been some Easter eggs displayed on the table in their lounge/living room. Knowing my fondness for chocolate, my father warned me in no uncertain terms that I was not to take any chocolate under any circumstances and was to leave it alone.

So we go in and my grandfather is sitting on a chair next to the chocolate. My dad needs to go somewhere and so he leaves me alone in the room with my grandfather and the chocolate. And soon after my grandfather offers me a chocolate. I take my dad's warning very seriously so I declined. But he persisted and, when I told him that Dad said no, he told me not to worry and take the chocolate anyway. I seem to remember he was quite bemused at my worry about wanting to do the right thing. And I was increasingly torn -I didn't want to disobey my father but at the same time I didn't want to offend my grandfather. Finally my dad comes back into the room, sees what is happening and reassures me that I can have the chocolate

Such a trivial incident in such an eventful childhood. Why is that among my favorite memories? Because it's one of the only, if not the only, memory I have of interacting with my grandfather. He died a few years later without me having seen him in many years (the tyranny of distance, we lived in two different countries that were quite far away) and one of my main regrets is barely having known him. So I'm so glad I have that one clear memory of him to cherish

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 05:44 PM

2. When I was four my friend Greg and I liked to stand in the garage with the lights off

and the wind would whistle under the garage door and scare us so badly that we'd run screaming out of there. Once we were recovered we'd go back in and do it again.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 05:51 PM

3. Sitting with my sisters

in (what seemed like) the dark in Grandma's living room, watching "Truth or Consequences" or "Bowling for Dollars" or "What's My Line" or some other game show. We ate Planters Dry-Roasted Peanuts and drank Dr Pepper. Number one on my list of Best Memories of Childhood.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 05:54 PM

4. The time I thought it would be a good idea to stick two keys in an electrical socket

Not perhaps the best, but the first.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 06:24 PM

5. Standing in back of my father on the couch

while watching "The Wizard of Oz" and hiding my face against his back whenever the flying monkeys came on. My dad could make everything ok, even flying monkeys.

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Response to LoveMyCali (Reply #5)

Thu May 24, 2012, 12:42 PM

37. Those things scared the bejeezuz outta me too!!!!

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 06:39 PM

6. I grew up in Jackson Michigan near Cascade Hill (home of the highest manmade waterfall in America).

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The sides of the hill were EXCELLENT for sledding and tobogganing and such. During the summer months,
my buddy and I would take our bicycles up there pre-dawn and, just after the sun came up and the grass
was EXTREMELY slick with dew, we'd SCREAM down that hill.
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Back then, bikes only had rear brakes activated by pushing the pedal backwards. If you touched your brake
in the SLIGHTEST way on that slick grass, it would whip out from under you and you'd roll and tumble the
rest of the way down.
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It was flat-out pedal-to-the-medal seriously dangerous Pony Express icy-balled insanity -- and it was one
of the most life-celebrating things I've ever done before or since!!!
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We certainly didn't tell our parents about it.
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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 07:30 PM

7. When I didn't have to go outside to use the bathroom. I was about five.

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Response to ohiosmith (Reply #7)

Wed May 23, 2012, 05:53 PM

27. I have a 40-something housemate whom I wished STILL went outside to use the bathroom.

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GEEZZZZZZ!!! Eat a fucking VEGETABLE!!!
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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 07:40 PM

8. I'm going with...

...seeing The Picasso for the first time. I was four years old, The Picasso was 1. It was the first time I had been to the city that I was actually old enough to form a real memory.

I remember getting off the train dressed in my blue checkered dress, lace tights and patent leather shoes with a little eyelet bandanna thing around my hair. Small, white cotton and terribly uncomfortable gloves on my tiny hands. Union Station was the biggest, loudest place I had ever been. I loved it. I was an extremely shy little girl, but for some reason the city comforted me. Still does.

Anyway...

My dad had taken me to work with him that day. Probably because my mother was in "no shape" to take care of me. I sat around his office, bored to tears. Finally, he decided I had had enough. We took a cab (they smelled bad...still do) to Daley Plaza and my dad pointed out the window at this enormous dog-looking thing. Walking towards it, I was awe-struck. When we got up to the base, my dad told me I could touch it. It was cold steel, but I swear I felt an unusual warmth or energy coming from it. With my little hand on its "feet", I looked up at its face...and fell in love. Picasso never filled us all in on what it was supposed to be, but I knew one thing, it was there to watch over the city and all of us.

One terrified little girl with a pretty sad childhood felt safe for a moment.

My dad bought me a little replica of The Picasso. It was lost long, long ago. I wish I still had it. But, whenever I get back to the city (rare, rare occasions), I go visit my old friend. And, I still touch its "feet" to feel the steely warmth of my city and its guardian.

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Response to Wait Wut (Reply #8)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:33 PM

16. I first saw it from a bus.

I think I was in kindergarten at the time, and there was no school that day. My dad dropped me off at my grandma's for the day. I went along as she ran errands, and we went downtown on the bus. This was back in the days when they still had the electric trolley buses. Grandma let me sit by the window, and the only thing I remember about the bus trip was the Picasso. I thought it looked like a weird elephant. I think we had lunch in the Marshall Fields cafeteria, but I don't remember anything else about that day.

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Response to GoCubsGo (Reply #16)

Wed May 23, 2012, 02:34 PM

23. Still can't believe Fields is gone.

My grandmother used to take me there for ice cream. It was beautiful at Xmas.

I still say The Picasso is his dog. He had one or two Afghan hounds that he adored.

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Response to Wait Wut (Reply #23)

Wed May 23, 2012, 05:13 PM

25. I have heard it said that it's actually his mother-in-law

But, I tend to agree with you that it looks more like and Afghan hound. I did not know what was an Afghan hound when I was that young. It also resembles a baboon, somewhat.

I am sad that Fields is gone, too. At least one can still get Fanny May chocolates.

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Response to GoCubsGo (Reply #16)

Fri May 25, 2012, 04:53 PM

46. Ah Yes The Hornets!

What an electrifying sound they made when they went through the intersections! I thought we would all get electrocuted. Similar to the EL. As a child afraid of heights I loved being underground but sure as the world our ride would end up on the "elevated" side and I had to go down those steps to ground level!

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Response to Wait Wut (Reply #8)

Wed May 23, 2012, 05:54 PM

28. Very nice.

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Response to Wait Wut (Reply #8)

Wed May 23, 2012, 10:06 PM

30. This is lovely, Wait.

Thanks very much for posting it.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:36 PM

9. The first day of summer break...

Me and my friends lying on my lawn in our bathing suits, having just come from the swimming pool. Realizing we had a whole summer ahead of us. (I went to a Catholic school with nuns, so you can understand my joy).

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:44 PM

10. All of it! Probably playing outside until dark.....

I grew up in the 1950s and 60s. It was such an innocent time. We were outside from morning till night, only coming in when we got hungry or our mothers called us. We were total tomboys and urchins! We had endless woods to explore, creeks, a big yard with shade trees to climb, a neighborhood playground, and everyone watched out for other peoples' kids. We had a lot of freedom but we were always safe.

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Response to femmocrat (Reply #10)

Wed May 23, 2012, 10:09 PM

31. the kind of childhood I'd've liked to have

Thanks, Femmocrat.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:46 PM

11. Every year, my family, my parents' freinds & their families went on vacation together.

We went to a fishing camp on a lake in the Middle-of-nowhere, Ontario. On a moonless night it got so dark out that you literally couldn't see your hand in front of your face.

This is where I was introduced to the Milky Way. And learned what it means to be awestruck.



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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:49 PM

12. our family

sharing a large pizza w / sausage & extra cheese on friday nights

good times!

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Response to lovemydog (Reply #12)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:35 PM

17. We did the same thing on Fridays.

Only we had sausage and mushroom. Some weeks, we'd have chicken from the takeout next door to the pizza joint instead.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 08:51 PM

13. playing in the neighborhood

in covington ky on a nice summer night, smelling the honeysuckle and rose bushes in the yards. catching lightening bugs and playing night catchers. such a carefree and innocent time...

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:00 PM

14. Learning how to swim without armbands at the exact same time as my twin brother. My dad

was standing on a rock in the lake, about 6 feet out calling out to us with his arms wide open. My twin and I both jumped in at the same time and swam out to him. I loved that lake.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:15 PM

15. Sitting on the stoop eating devil dogs and drinking coke.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:45 PM

18. I seriously had so much freedom as a child

and so many good memories. I think I was really blessed. My parents were loose with the kids. As the youngest they often sort of forgot I existed.

I will go with U of Iowa football Saturdays. Kids could often get in for 50cents or a buck. We would then watch the games from the grass, playing and having a great time.
After the game, we 'scavenged' the place for whatever valuables the often drunk fans would lose. Usually I would find money - at least $5 or more.
We didn't have daylight time then so the games ended @4Pm and we'd scavenge til@ 5or so. By the time we got home (about a 3 mile walk) the night was well on its way.
Then out for dinner with Mom and Dad, home to fight with my brothers (did I mention I was the youngest?) and then the Saturday night creature feature on TV

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 09:50 PM

19. Swimming in Lake Michigan.

There were a couple of places we went. One was the Indiana Dunes State Park, and the other was the Illinois Beach State Park. I remember the latter more vividly. It had an old concrete beach house with showers and concessions. I don't remember the water being all that cold, although I'm sure it was. I do remember the shoreline being very rocky and hard on the feet. But, I also remember collecting the waved-polished rocks. They were beautiful when they were wet. I also remember dead alewives that got washed up, along with hunks of algae. We had loads of fun body-surfing when the waves kicked up, and we made sand castles with all sorts of canals and motes on the sandy part of the beach. One of my uncles even let us bury him in the sand.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 10:51 PM

20. Mine would have to be at about 5 years old, laying in the warm straw with the new calves.

Kind of a strange one, but it was the first time I can remember being so happy I thought my heart would explode.

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Response to polly7 (Reply #20)

Thu May 24, 2012, 10:18 PM

40. I think this is wonderful.

Thank you for posting it.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 10:55 PM

21. Climbing to the top of the highest trees

and feeling the wind. If only I could do that again

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Tue May 22, 2012, 11:18 PM

22. Off in the woods with my dog King just being one with nature.

From the time I was little I was allowed to hike acres of forest along deer trails. My dog and I would follow the stream to the marsh and search for Lady Slippers and lizards. Back before bottled water we would drink right from the quartz rock source of the spring on a hill that was covered with wild blueberries. Dragon flies, mud puppies and four leaf clovers. Incredible.

Just being alive and sharing it with my best friend.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Wed May 23, 2012, 02:37 PM

24. Playing with dolls. I loved it. nt

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Wed May 23, 2012, 05:17 PM

26. Sitting on my Daddy's lap on Sunday mornings, while he read the Sunday comics to me.

I thought he was the best reader in the whole world. Come to find out he was barely literate. Almost 4 years since he's been gone and I still miss him terribly.

Thanks for provoking the memory.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Wed May 23, 2012, 07:18 PM

29. It must be my grandmothers face..

When I was 6 months old , my parents took me to Osaka, Japan to meet my grand mother, (My father's mother...who has since passed on.) I was later shown a photo of her by my mother, and recognised her, even though I don't recall meeting her at six months. The face some how remained intact some where in my mind. I wish I could remember Osaka, but I am sure most of what I would have seen were the walls of a baby carriage.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Wed May 23, 2012, 10:16 PM

32. Playing at my grandparents' house

They had a huge garden, chickens. I was allowed to mow the lawn with the riding mower, even at a young age. They strapped me in and put it on the slowest level. Good times.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 12:10 AM

33. Playing on my island

It was about 30 feet across

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 12:16 AM

34. Last day of school/beginning of summer vacation.

There was a feeling that it would go on forever. I think that is about as free as I've ever felt.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 01:00 AM

35. Last day of school - 3rd Grade.

We lined up at the door of the classroom to say goodbye to our teacher, Mrs. Jones, a beautiful woman whom I adored. She gave me a hug goodbye, I swooned a little inside as a result, then ran out into the sunshine, shouting "Freedom!", and looking forward to a wonderful summer. (The summer of 'Star Wars', as it turned out...)

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 02:12 AM

36. Building model airplanes on the roof of my tree house.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 01:51 PM

38. Driving a pontoon boat on some lake when I was 6.

This was during a family reunion in northern MN.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Thu May 24, 2012, 02:08 PM

39. I was seven....

It was a lovely fall day in Fort Worth Texas. The sky was a clear deep blue with a few clouds drifting about. The air was clean and crisp, with the smell of fallen leaves. I laid down in the oak leaves. I heard the wonderful crunch. I laid still looking up in the sky, thinking to myself how magical this day was.

As I lay still and my thoughts wondered around, I noticed a Monarch butterfly drift down and land on me. First one, then another, then another. Before I knew it, I was covered with Monarchs. It was hard to tell where the oak leaves ended and the Monarchs began. I stayed still as long as I could before I had to get up. I later read that Monarch's are sensitive to cold and my tiny body must have generated enough heat to make them feel comfortable on their way to Mexico. I could imagine them warming their feet and wings before they took off again.

OK, that is the scientific explanation, but I like to think it was magic.

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Response to AnneD (Reply #39)

Thu May 24, 2012, 10:21 PM

41. Yeah, I'm going with magic.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Fri May 25, 2012, 03:40 AM

42. Wow, there are so many

Sundays at grandparents' house-- watching the political discussion shows (back when they were serious and civil), eating delicious home-cooked Sunday dinners, reading the Sunday comics, playing games, watching sports on TV, hiding under the huge oak dining table, discovering "treasures" upstairs, taking in the wonderful smell of the garage (I'll never know what caused that smell, but it was wonderful), taking in the wonderful smell of the freezer, cracking open walnuts and hickory nuts from trees that grew in the yard, walking to see the big red barn that was at the end of the street, going for a drive with grandparents out to the country, seeing the leaves turn color in the fall...

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Response to Art_from_Ark (Reply #42)

Fri May 25, 2012, 04:45 PM

45. Art, this is lovely.

Thank you.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Fri May 25, 2012, 02:39 PM

43. Playing with fire. I was one of those kids.

Another great memory -- when I was in third grade I found a copy of "The boys' first book of radio and electronics" on our classroom bookshelf. My teacher let me take it home!!! I was the happiest kid in the universe. The best teachers go above and beyond the standard curriculum.



http://openlibrary.org/books/OL6155191M/The_boys'_first_book_of_radio_and_electronics.

As kids we'd wander far and wide without adult supervision. We once stole a small boat and my little brother almost drowned but we fished him out, mostly conscious. Nobody ever told, not until we were all adults.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Fri May 25, 2012, 03:33 PM

44. Running through the pasture, barefoot, to find my calf to lie down with him.

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Response to Bertha Venation (Original post)

Fri May 25, 2012, 04:59 PM

47. We were Of Nature When We Were Young

It was free,we could spend an entire day in a park or wooded areas around train tracks(that had very slow freight--never a danger since we did not play chicken). Where there was tall grass we would take a piece of cardboard and slide down the little hills. We looked at pretty rocks(took a couple since they were free as well), checked out butterflies that still flew in the area,watched the birds and tried to identify them by sound(I could only figure out the cardinal and robin). Later on me and my best friend would sit in her fathers DeSota and dream about our future,where we would live,what we would do etc. In the car it was private(didn't even have the capability to have music on but we didn't care). We never left even a gum wrapper in that car. We knew better. But, alas, all that planning never came true but at the time it was what we wanted our future to be. Do the texting kids today ever think that far ahead????

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