Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lazy Hazy Crazy Days of Summer

I close my eyes and think of summer's long ago:

I wake early and go outside to find my mother pulling weeds in the flower bed.
Barefooted in the grass, I feel the dew on my feet.
When the milkman delivers the milk we run out to his truck hoping that he will give us a piece of ice to chew.
I lay on my back in the yard watching clouds pass overhead.
My sister, brother and I run up and down the sidewalk.
We join the neighborhood children playing cops and robbers.
I make a skateboard by putting a book on top of my metal skate, because I can sit and ride down the sidewalk that I am too scared to stand and skate down.
I make miniature houses under the apple tree in the backyard. I pretend fairies live there when I leave.
I love to feel the air in my face as I ride my bike down the hill.
We put on our swimsuits and squirt each other with the hosepipe.
I try to avoid stepping on the bumblebees buzzing in the clover that dots the backyard.
I run inside and lay in front of the fan whenever I get too hot outside.
I walk to the library to check out the three books their rules allow. (stupid rule)
I read a lot.
I hang upside down on the swing set pretending I am Tarzan. I try out my yell. It's not very good.
I play games of jacks with neighborhood children.
At dusk we play hide and seek.
My mother calls me home.
I sit on the porch with my parents and siblings after supper. We talk and listen to the night sounds. Sometimes we take a walk through the neighborhood in the cool night air. I love to look in the open windows or doors and see how others live.
I'm sent inside to take my bath. I whistle loudly the whole time. I'm scared to be inside alone. I imagine that if something gets me my parents will notice that I've stopped whistling and will come rescue me. I hurry and finish. Put on my pajamas and run back out onto the porch.
We sleep with the windows open. I can hear the crickets sing. I sleep under the sheet no matter how hot it is. That way I am safe from whatever may live under my bed.
I wake up and start another day.

Memories of my childhood.


  1. A truly beautifully written story; I could picture it all while reading, I swear I even heard he crickets!
    I loved that your family went outside after super, talking...
    My family did that too. I mean not go outside, but sit and talk. I think company like that I miss the most living alone.
    Lovely post, one of my favorites.;)

  2. So much of this could be my own childhood. Marvelous stroll down memory lane. Thanks for taking me along. Those wide headbands are back in vogue.

  3. oh yes....sigh memories, wonderful, better than any wealth!

  4. oh and LOOK at your dresses...would someone have sewn them for you? I love photos like these of days gone by...

  5. I loved this, Stevie. Your memories are so similar to my own.

  6. I see Willow beat me to it...I SO agree...we have many of the same memories of summer that you have!

  7. Beautiful post, Stevie. I love how you played with the "hosepipe" -- that's a term not heard too often anymore!

  8. Those could of been my days/nights of summer. We lived on a dead end street with lots of kids! I can still hear the bell of the ice cream truck . The lawn mowers, baseball games, Mother May I, running through the sprinkler, quick trips to the lake down the street, all good times. Your story brought me back, thanks for the memories.

  9. It was a wonderful time, wasn't it? The summers of childhood. I well remember getting "squirted"!!

  10. oh how I remember so many of these. i would leap from the door of my room onto my bed to keep away from the scary monsters.

  11. Oh, Stevie!You and your sister looks so sweet in those matching dresses! I loved reading your summer memories-- they were very much like mine! Even though I was a city kid, my area of Brooklyn in those days was underdeveloped and we had a lot of freedom to explore the empty lots and sit in trees and play in the playgrounds from dawn to dusk. There were so many kids! (my best friend had 10 kids in her family and another had 8!) We played all kinds of rubber ball hames with our Spaldeens. "Stoop Ball" was a favorite -- I think that may only a Brooklyn game.
    We also played "Mother may I?" and "Red Light Green Light" and "Giant Steps" We waited for the Good Humor ice dream truck and sometimes the Half Moon ride would coe on the block and we could ride it for a dime.
    All such good memories!
    I was happy when my own kids told me their happy childhood summer memories recently. Childhood is a magical time.

  12. 1-I've never seen that pic of you and R and R!
    2-Very fun stream of consciousness. Made me want to write my own.

    There's a slowness of living and of...being, that are very hard to find today, even when one simplifies life as much as possible!

  13. Fabulous memories .. and I have a photo to send you .. keep an eye out for it ..

  14. I lurve the picture! Sweet memories, I so wish children today could have the safe atmosphere to live like we did as children.

  15. Sounds like we could have lived in the same neighborhood! What a lovely innocent time for us lucky ones...One thing in your memory that is not in mine is skateboards...I think they weren't invented yet when I was young ...we loved the roller-skates that you attached with a key:)

  16. Oliag, my skateboard was something I invented to get out of having to stand up and skate down my scary hill. I used a metal skate and put a book on top and sat down on it....therefore one could say I invented the skateboard....couldn't one?

    Jill and Pat, my mother made those dresses. Did you notice that my brother's shirt matches as well?

  17. This was the sweetest post. I always love thinking of those times long ago. The 50's were so much more peaceful. I know it wasn't all perfect, but at least we could play outside without worrying about being kidnapped. I think since we didn't have all the electronic stuff we just made our fun. I loved reading too and the cool breeze while I was reading. We had the ice cream man at nighttime in a big RV type deal. It cost only 50 cents for a huge soda or shake. See I was loving the sweets back then. Thank you for your memories. The picture is adorable. Your mama was very talented. Sweet.

  18. This was brilliant, Stevie! I loved it. You had a charmed childhood from where I'm sitting.


  19. I love to hear about you childhood. I remember you telling me the story of whistling in the bath and I think I did the same at your suggestion. I also sleep under the sheet no matter how hot it was so the nothing got me. Like mother like daughter. Love you.

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