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I Remember When…..The Good Ole Days

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I remember when…..or even – Do you remember when….. It’s a common phrase we all use often, especially when we get together with our family or old friends. Lately I have been doing a lot of I remember when’s. Don’t know why – no reason. My mind just jumps back to earlier times…fun times…different relationships…friends…family affairs.

We all do it. It’s a natural process of getting older, and as we get older we sometimes tend to forget the finer details of the past and our minds have to be jump-started and our memories jogged with reminisces from earlier times.

I was remembering when we used to walk or ride our bikes to town when we were younger, but I couldn’t remember how many blocks that was or even the names of the streets. I called my sister, Debbie, and she googled it and came up with the names I was missing and we decided it was only about five blocks. I googled how long city blocks were and came up with an average of 16 – 17 blocks per mile. That’s a lot of blocks and I would think there were less blocks in a mile. So…I guess it wasn’t as far as I thought it was. Of course we probably made it longer than was necessary. There was plenty to look at, friends houses to stop by, and lots of nooks and crannies to explore along the way.

The length isn’t important though. What matters is that we did it. We walked to the picture show on Saturdays and there was usually a double feature. When that was over we would sometimes sit through it all over again.

We would walk down to the news stand and buy candy. Does anyone remember corn suckers? It was hard candy on a stick and there was a coin hidden inside the candy. The coin wasn’t wrapped in cellophane – just encased in the candy. They probably cost a dime at the most. Sometimes there was a quarter hidden inside, but most likely it was a penny! Think of the lawsuits surrounding that candy today if it was still being manufactured!

We would walk to the library and spend hours browsing through the shelves of books with our friends. We would sit and read or look through the picture viewers. Remember those? You could look through the lens and  see pictures in 3-D. I have an old one of those  and wonder now why we were so thrilled to get our turn at using one. Compared to what is out there today, they are nothing except nostalgic.

I wonder sometimes what my mother was doing when we were all out of her hair for hours on Saturday afternoons. As long as she knew where we were and we returned home before dark there was no problem. She was probably in heaven because there were five of us and we were usually under her feet – at least I was! I’ve been told I was very clingy!

My mother worked night duty at the local hospital as an RN and my dad worked normal daytime hours at the post office in those days. It worked out fine for them as far as schedules go. Mother went to work at 11pm til 7am. She left after we went to bed at night and was home in time to get us off to school in the mornings, plus my dad was home at night so we weren’t alone in the house.

Summer vacations from school must have been a nightmare for my mother though. I remember her sleeping during the day closed up in my brothers room because it was the farthest away from all the noise. The window unit would be on drowning out any other noises there may be and if you opened the door you could almost feel the icicles start to form. She would be in the bed with the covers piled high and dead to the world. I don’t know how she stood it being so cold in there! I’m sure she didn’t get as much rest as should have though. We were in there constantly – asking questions, searching for a lost item, just bothering her in general. Debbie, woke her one day to ask her where the library card was. Her answer – “There it is walking out the door!” It was like a game with us when it got started. We would ask a question just to hear what she would say, giggling at her answers. We always said she could sleep through a tornado! Sometimes it was very frustration though because we thought the world revolved around us and her sleep did not matter. We needed answers and we needed them pronto! She needed sleep to function but didn’t get much of that with us around.

Do you have a story to share that stands out in your childhood – some casual remembrance of days long gone? I guess those were the ‘good ole days!’


About Elle Knowles

Elle Knowles lives in the Florida Panhandle with her husband and off-at-college-most-of-the-time son. She has four daughters, one son, and eleven beautiful grandchildren. 'Crossing the Line' is her first novel. The sequel 'What Line' is a work in progress. Recently published is Coffee-Drunk Or Blind - a nonfiction story of homesteading in the Alaska wilderness with her parents and four siblings, told through letters by her mother and remembered accounts from the family.

9 responses »

  1. Just read your blog. Regarding the, Corn Sucker…I remember that candy. Prayed for a quarter. On one believes me when I tell about that candy. Thanks! 🙂


  2. I remember you asking us what we wanted for Christmas and we would say “store bought clothes”. I also remember trying to watch tv through the noise and lines that your sewing machine would make.


  3. I remember so many things from Dixie Street. I must have been a wild child. Walking back to that dam and going through those old kilns! We got shot at from across the ditch with bows and arrows from those boys on the other side. That scared us half to death! My white jeans were black from running through charred bushes to get away from there! Mary Lou Vining and Susan Atkinson and I walked up and down those streets quite regularly! We had such fun! We stayed out all day and until dark, when we were ready to get away from the mosquitos! Sherry Hawkins would come and hang out some too. Can’t remember who I had these different adventures with, but one of the three. I slammed the front door so hard one time, because I was mad at someone that the glass fell out of the front door and broke all over the front porch…I was in trouble then. I could go on and on! Now I get irritated at Meggie for wanting to be on the go all the time. Wonder where she gets that from. There is hope for her yet!!!


  4. Terri Spears

    Remember when we would wake up at some god awful hour like 3 a.m. And drive to aunt Debbie’s and uncle bobs? I still do that when I take the kids to ur house or Jessie’s. Jason thinks I’m crazy but there is little traffic and old habits die hard plus the kids sleep through most of the trip and it’s nice and peaceful!!


  5. Tish Knowles

    Those were the days!!

    Remember when we opened up the Christmas presents very carefully, then wrapped them back up after we played with them? Chip got a reel-to-reel tape player, and we recorded on it. We just about wore it out before Christmas!



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