Tuesday, July 27, 2010

childhood summers

Ahhh...to be a kid!  I remember spending awesome summer vacations on my grandparent's farm.  Helping my grandmother bang together a scarecrow for her vegetable garden, shooing all of her grandchildren away from underfoot while she prepared meals for a crew of men working in my grandfather's fields during hay season. That usually consisted of potato salad made with real home-made mayonnaise, cooked ham, her wicked homemade bread, with butter and a cup of 'real' tea which is, according to any serious East Coast tea-totaller, King Cole Tea; picking string beans from the garden in large plastic bowls and after having cleaned (snapped) them all, being rewarded with a stick of Wrigley's chewing gum; sitting on my grandad's knee warm summer evenings counting fireflies, while admiring how the moon reflected off of his bald head which I was allowed to buff on occasion much to my delight; games of Ghost Down Cellar around the mulberry bush on their front lawn...a velvety green carpet gently rolling down to the mighty Miramichi River; How Many Birds In the Bush with marbles, in an old tent we kids had retrieved from some one's trash and Simon Says with the lot of us, ALL cousins, whom were loved more like sisters and brothers than they were cousins...we had our own little army of 17; the church hymns and stories of her childhood she would send me into slumber in her big brass bed with, while curtains softly danced in warm summer breezes.
My grandparents have both passed on since those times, God rest their souls.  I miss them and still shed a tear from time to time in recalling them and the wonderful days of summer as a kid.  I wonder if they realize what a tremendous legacy of a truly amazing childhood, they left each and every one of their grandchildren with, to last us a lifetime.

My mom doesn't own a farm, so unfortunately, my children will never know such memories of summer!  And eventho failing sadly in comparison, hopefully what they will remember, are the small and seemingly, at least to me, minute traditions I've tried to consistently provide them with year after year.  Whether it be the must of cotton candy at the annual carnival rides, fireworks never missed bundled up with snacks and cuddles, afternoons playing in the pool filled with lots of laughter, family time, grilled dinners where it's not so much about the eating as it is about the family event itself, never ending supplies of Popsicles and Mr. Freezes following strenuous bouts of play, hours spent on the front yard swing that Papa built, camping weekends filled with campfires, roasting marshmallows, playing in the garden hose with Murphy, or the Sunday evening "ice cream drives",  that would have us guessing, it's all been good thus far. We can't be sure, but we've not heard any complaints.

My mom is selling her cottage tho.  I don't suppose she would consider buying...