Two "fun facts" for you about me if you haven't been here long: 1. I pretty much always
I've always loved summer. Long, sunny warm days, that seem carefree, even though as an adult, I work on many of these days. Thinking of school starting in less than a month gives me a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach, even though it's not me that will be going back to school. I just love the laziness of summer-not having to get my kids up and rushed out the door in the morning, not having to make them do homework when I fell like they should be relaxing and playing outside after a busy day of learning...
As a little kid, I remember getting up in the morning, pulling on my hand-me-down, Incredible Hulk green Toughskins cut off shorts, a polyester striped shirt (hey, it was the late 70's, early 80's!), and flip flops (which we innocently called "thongs" back then), and heading outside to ride my Big Wheel. I loved my Big Wheel so much-I really do wish they made them for grown ups! Usually, I'd ride with Charlie, the little kid down the street. He was kind of mean, and younger than me, and peed on trees a lot, but he really liked me, and was afraid of my Mom, so it was all good. Plus, he was pretty much the only kid around to play with, most of the time.
Charlie and I would ride up and down the sidewalk, racing each other, purposely crashing into each other, and usually, pretending we were the Dukes of Hazard. Sometimes we were CHiPS, but only when Jeffrey, the CHiPs obsessed kid down the street joined in, but that wasn't often. (I still remember Jeffrey's CHiPS themed orange big wheel...) We'd take turns playing Bo or Luke, or Enos or Roscoe. Yeah, I'm a girl, but really, Daisy was no fun to play-she just wasn't very bright, and we knew that. One of us would chase the other down the street, ram in to the back of the other's Big Wheel, and then the person in front would flip over their vehicle, pretending to be "crashed." As I recall, the storyline didn't go much beyond the chasing and crashing, although occasionally, stolen "money", that was actually dried out grass clippings, was involved.
After tiring of this, we'd usually head to his house or mine for some Kool Aid, then run to the nearest swingset, where we'd play Kool Aid-mustached circus acrobats, airplane pilots or house, until Charlie did something mean and made me mad. I'd go inside for a while and pout, and then later, we'd meet up again-either Big Wheeling, or climbing the crab apple tree in my front yard. That tree was many things-sometimes it was the Duke's farm house, other times it was a house for our dolls (when I could talk him into it, and yes, when a boy's best friend is a little girl, chances are, he'll own at least one doll, no matter how masculine he is, or how many trees he pees on), or a Star Wars ship (when he could talk me into it). We spent lots of time jumping out of that tree, or swinging from a branch, trying to impress each other (unsucessfully) with our fancy tricks.
Although I don't really miss Charlie, or watching him pee in random places (what WAS that about , anyway?), I do kind of miss those carefree sunny days, when I could play all day, and not have to think about when my next bowl of Spaghetti-O's would be served. I could pedal along, hearing the pleasing sound of my Big Wheel "roaring" down the side walk, getting suntanned (no one worried about skin cancer back then), scraped up and mosquito bitten. Life was good, and this was kid-life at it's best!
The kids in the pictures are a (pre-Charlie era) 4 year old me, and my husband. Don't you love my knee socks, Mom-made outfit, and "don't mess with me and my cool hawg" scowl?