I have many fond memories of growing up. Although we didn’t have a lot of money and thereby didn’t go to Disneyland or other vacation resorts, what we did experience was priceless. We shared many experiences as a family and enjoyed many traditions (some of which I've blogged about here - A Knock at the Door & Dinnertime Conversations). There are so many that I have a difficult time determining which memory would be considered the earliest.
However, I would have to say that our nightly ritual bedtime stories is one of the most precious memories that I have as a child growing up. You might assume that my parents would read us a story from a book before they tucked us in for bed. But that isn’t quite accurate. After each of us kids had brushed our teeth and changed into our pajamas, we would all gather together on one of my brothers' beds and Dad would tell stories of what it was like when he was a kid.
He grew up on the outskirts of Portland and his family later moved to Gilchrest, Oregon where he spent his elementary school years. He would describe adventures he shared with his two older brothers and the jaunts he experienced alone. Some of the most memorable tales are when he and his brothers tried to fly by fashioning wings from materials they found around their home and then jumping off the roof of their barn. I remember we tried to emulate them a few times from the roof of Mr. Cole’s garage!
They pestered hives of yellow-jackets. They found an old Model "A" Ford abandoned in the woods and dragged it home in an attempt to repair it. The arrowheads they found while trekking along hunting trails. Many times, he would share the same story over and over. We never tired of hearing about his days as a child. Everything seemed so different back then, so innocent and magical.
Today, I continue this tradition with my own children. My daughter frequently requests stories of when I was a little girl, just as I remember asking my father to share his stories. She's already begun scripting stories of when 'she was a little girl', this brings a smile to my face knowing that she is only four.
Written for March Write-Away Contest at Scribbit.