As I age I discover that seeing or remembering things from my youth makes me smile. Here is a list of things that you don’t see that much anymore that either have or would make me smile. If you are old enough they may make you smile too!
An ugly mis-shapen snowmen obviously made completely by children. Grass and mud sticking to the haphazardly rolled balls of snow. Decidedly not a snow sculpture
A snow fort stockpiled with a galvanized washtub full of well packed icy snowballs
Having my car hit by a snowball lobbed over a fence for from behind a house. Oh the adventure and daring it required
Any kid climbing a real tree instead of the fake artificial trees that most modern playgrounds emulate.
Kids looking out of the windows of cars instead of talking on a phone or playing a video game
Mittens on a string
Real rubber boots the thin black ones called galoshes, with metal buckles on them and plastic bread bags inside of them.. N0 zippers or velcro
A cat and dog standing stock still in the yard just looking at each other. This used to be common site in the neighborhood when dogs ran loose and cats only came in at night.
Any little girl riding a pink bike… Think about it how many kids do you see riding a bike anywhere but in their driveway. They used to represent freedom.
Sling shots… there are still three hiding in the rafters of our garage in Minnesota… ineffective, weak, almost useless but mentally very powerful
A bag of marbles, shooters, aggies, and cats eyes…. and if you were really lucky at least one steely….. another name for a ball bearing. There was a lot to learn playing for “Keepsies”
A marshmallow or hotdog on the end of a green( so it wouldnt burn) real stick sharpened with a pocket knife.
A wood burning fireplace with a hearth-rug, noisy, smelly, and smoky
A freshly flashed flashbulb still warm and all bubbly and foggy
The handle that was used to open the lid of a wood burning stove and the feeling of absolute ecstasy that came from warming one side of your body while the other was still freezing cold and then turning like a pancake to finish the job.
Any pond with a now unused warming shack still sitting by it…. they almost always had one of those stoves from above and wooden benches marred by the blades of a thousand ice skates
An orchard with the branches of huge old sprawling old apple trees propped up by a forest of two by fours.
A dog sprawled out at the end of the gravel driveway silently soaking in the suns rays on even the hottest of days waiting for their master to come home.
A fishbowl.. no light, no heat just one lonely goldfish living above a bed of blue gravel
Aluminum screen doors… real aluminum with the screen bowed out from being pushed on by a generation of children
A mottled light green thinly grassed yard mottled with dark green spots that used to indicate dog ownership
The baseball game called 500 line drives were 100, fly’s were 50 and grounders were 25
White picket fences made of the wood from old packing cases and covered by peeling paint.
Single car garages that were so narrow that you couldn’t open the doors of a car once you actually got it in the garage.
Bridle wreath and hydrangea bushes ( snowball )bushes
Rabbit ears with tin foil flags on top of a TV. The ones that you had to keep holding onto if you wanted to watch one of the three channels that were available without snow.
The rattle of car chains in the wheel wells, the cursing of your father as they were put on and icy snowy roads they were used for, that you could sled down oh so fast on a flexible flyer
A Barber Pole even better if it was rotating
Wooden indians and nickels
Gas that was cheaper than milk
A full bag of groceries in a paper sack carried to your car for less than $5 a bag
The circular glass case with pie in it and flies buzzing around it on the diner counter
Signs that said, “Come On In…. It’s Cool Inside”
Plastic fly swatters and curly fly paper
Any kid who thought a hammer, some nails and a piece of wood were great entertainment
A shelf with a set of encyclopedias on it
Elm tree lined streets, no other tree does it anywhere near as well.
Flicka, Sky King, and The Buster Brown Show
A yellow Formica topped metal table and chairs sitting on a linoleum floor
Kids playing any sport in a too small space with its own special rules and without an adult nearby
Getting ice from the milk delivery truck in the summer time. If you were really lucky he might give a bottle of chocolate milk that everyone would share, germs be damned.
Marveling at the cardboard top sitting on top of a pillar of frozen milk in the winter time when you opened the milkbox on the front porch
Summer time water not from a bottle but from the garden hose
A rusty tin communal cup hanging from baling wire on the side of the cast iron water pump.
Additions From Comments!
clothespins and playing cards in the spokes of my bike wheels
a properly folded newspaper on the front porch (which was thrown perfectly from the front sidewalk or street,) a properly folded newspaper on the roof (which wasn’t thrown perfectly)
a newspaper boy carrying his huge, yellow bag of newspapers
drug store “soda fountains,”
the marble ring – a worn dirt circle in the yard, my personalized corduroy marble bag which contained all my marbles (ha, ha) and a long piece of string to make a circle just in case there wasn’t a dirt ring to play on or in case we had to play inside
Movies at the Varsity on Saturday afternoons.
5 cent cones at the Dairy Queen.
Wax Coke bottles filled with colored water.
Painted turtles and purple and green baby chickens.
Happy Time ranch that would deliver a Shetland Pony to your house for a party.
Hearing the ice cream truck three blocks away
Roller skates that had keys and wearing the key around your neck on an old shoe string
Always having scabbed up knees and palms.
Swinging so high on the swing set that the swing set legs lifted off the ground.
Ghost in the grave yard
kick the can and flashlight tag.