10 Things This Grandmother Did As A Child

If you’re not a Baby Boomer, you may not remember this old, heavy, black phone.  When I was growing up, it could be found in just about every home in America at one point.  Party lines came along with it.  What is a party line you ask? It means that you shared phone lines with neighbors.  You could pick up the phone to make a call and hear your neighbor talking. If you did, you had to put the phone down and wait your turn.  If you were anxious to make a call, it seemed like they were talking, talking and talking, the conversation never ended.  Unless it was an emergency, you didn’t interrupt. You graciously waited.  Party lines, 5 brothers and a sister helped teach me patience and tolerance.  

Back than, there were no cell phones or laptops.  You had to be creative, find your own entertainment and learn to live with each other as a family.  There were no on-line games, social media sites, and the television didn’t have hundred’s of channels.  There was no cable; we had rabbit ears and antennas to bring the picture in on the television.  We have come a long way in technology, but I truly appreciate the simply things in life.  Times were gentler back in the day.  It seems like we go a hundred miles an hour all day everyday now.    

I look back at my childhood, and it was a much slower and gentler time.  We entertained each other and families spent quality time together.   Here’s what my childhood looked like:  

  1. We played games together.  – I remember spending hours playing Candy Lane, Monopoly, War, Old Maids, Hide and Seek, Mother May I, Hopscotch and roller skating on the sidewalk.  When I got older, we spent Sundays at the roller skating rink.  
  2. We played baseball in our backyard.  
  3. We caught fire flies at night and butterflies in the day.  
  4. We went to the local Burger Joint for the most delicious burgers, fries, and the thickest shakes that you can imagine.  No McDonald’s burgers for us.  
  5. We walked our neighborhood and explored nature all day.  Our parents never worried about us, and we were carefree.  
  6. We watched television as a family on Saturday mornings.  Sunday nights we watched most of my father’s favorite shows, but we watched and was happy to do it.  We popped popcorn on top of the stove in a pan and watched Tom Jones, Hee Haw, Lawrence Welk, and Gunsmoke.  I’m telling my age here, but they were good times and I’m comfortable with my age, ha!  
  7. We gathered pop bottles in a red Western Flyer wagon and returned them for pennies.  Yes, pennies.  We could buy candy all day for a quarter from our local stores.  We had Pixie Sticks, Kits, Red Hots, Fire Balls and Bon Bons.  Pay Day and Baby Ruth’s were my favorite candy bars and still are.  
  8. I lived in a small town, so the local carnival in the summer was a big deal.  We had a parade with local High School marching bands, fire trucks from all over the local areas, clowns, and floats.  I can still feel the butterflies in my stomach from the Ferris Wheel.  My mother allowed us to stay until closing, mid-night, while she played Bingo.  We even walked home in groups at that time of night, without worry of being snatched, raped or harmed in some way.  
  9. We waited for the ice cream truck, Mr. Softie, to come to the neighborhood.  We got so excited when we heard the music.  I always got a a blue or red Italian Ice or a Push Up.  For years, I didn’t know the Italian Ice flavors were Cherry or Blue Raspberry.  They were just colors to me.    
  10. Saturday mornings after the cartoons, mom and dad went grocery shopping.  Each week one of us kids would get to go with them and pick out whatever we wanted in the store.  If it didn’t have to be cooked, they allowed us to eat it in the car on the way home.  That was a treat and a great time for whoever’s turn it was.  
This lifestyle may seem slow and not cool for many who were raised in the modern technology era or in the city, but it was the best for me.  I think it grounded me and made me appreciate the small things in life.  The things we no longer appreciate or take for granted now.  This lifestyle helped make me who I am today and still plays a role in my life.   Although I’ve had a career in Corporate America, traveled, eaten at the best restaurants, stayed in the best hotels, and met many people on my journey, I want my grandchildren to experience the more low key lifestyle as the mother did.  I could have moved to any major city in this country, but I choose to stay in the small town environment.  I’m so glad that I never lost appreciation for it.  What was your childhood like?  

   Note:  Photo courtesy of stockvault.net                                                                       

Where’s My Go-Go Boots?

Do You Love These boots? You know you want them, lol. I recently celebrated my birthday and I’ve been reminiscing about the 60’s and 70’s. This is the era that I grow up in. I’ve posted about events and slang during the 60’s, I’ll focus on fashion in this post.

In the 60’s and 70’s I really wasn’t into the Hippie look. My favorite outfits were bell bottoms, halter tops (back outs) minis, and my white Go Go boots. I was a “fox” if I must say so myself. For those who don’t know, fox was 60/70’s slang for an attractive woman. Fashion in the 60 and 70’s was bold and fun. The colors were vivid yellow, orange, purple, and blues.

I loved my Go Go boots. I remember my boots as if I just took them off. They were white with a low heel and a side zipper. Go Go boots were suppose to fit tightly around your calf, but my legs were so skinny at that time I had to wrap paper towels around them so my boots would fit snugly. Oh, those were the days. My Go Go boots and skinny legs are long gone, but the memories remain. Go Go boots became the rage when the song “These Boots Were Made for Walkin” became popular. Nancy Sinatra, daughter of Frank Sinatra, performed the song.

I wore my Go Go boots with mini skirts and tights or hot pants and tights. In the 60’s mini skirts and hot pants were tasteful. I wore my mine with fishnet or window pane stockings. I actually found fishnets at Wal-Mart last year. They brought back memories.

Another favorite was my back out, i.e. halter top. I wore my halter top with hip hugger bell bottom jeans and a fringe bell. I also had yellow and pink bell bottoms. I was looking good, at least I thought I was. In the 70’s I adored my maxi dresses. They are making a come back, and I feel just as comfortable in them today as I did in the 70’s.

I sported an Afro too. I spent alot of time shaping it with a pick similar to the one shown.  My hair was long and thick, so my Afro was huge.  I looked like a stick with a big bush on top of it, OMG.  I don’t know how I carried all that hair.  To make matters worst, which at the time I thought I was looking good, I wore blue eye shadow, a line of blush on my cheeks and lip gloss.  I wish I had pictures to show you how fashionable and fly I was back in the day.  I know I would have you on the floor, but you’ll have to use your imagination on this one.  This era has passed, but it was a fun time in my life and I love looking back on it. I wouldn’t trade those years for anything.

What was fashionable back in the day for you? Leave us a comment and tell us about your favorite outfits growing up.