Since today is Flashback Friday but it happens to fall on the 10th of the month when I would normally do my 10 on 10, I decided to give this month's 10 on 10 a flashback theme. Each hour I am to take one photo and my goal is to find nostalgic things that take me back and take photos of THOSE. So, come with me down memory lane...
This is a photo board I have in my office at work. It takes me back to when Nathaniel was little (which was just YESTERDAY, wasn't it?!?) since I haven't updated any of the photos on this board since I started there and he was 6-months-old then!
After work I took the boys out to Geema and Geempa's to let out their dogs (since they were coming home late) and I let the kids (Nate anyway) run around for a while to burn some steam. While I was there, I saw a lot that took me back. Like this tree, for example. I love this tree. It stands in my parents' front yard and has provided hours of entertainment, solace, and education throughout the years. It is here where my brother and I would swing from the branches pretending to be Indiana Jones swinging to safety over a pit of snakes. My sister and I would spend hours perched on the tree's limbs, talking, laughing, and testing our limits as we climbed ever higher to see how close to the top we could get. I remember finding the shells of cicadas stuck to the bark of the trunk after they had molted and left them behind. What a lesson in nature that was! Not too long ago the tree didn't seem to be doing well and my parents talked about having to cut it down. I was devastated! This old climbing tree holds a lot of special memories for me and for my whole family. Miraculously, however, the tree has made a comeback (evidenced by these photos) and will thankfully live to see another day and a few more climbers from the next generation.
Growing up we spent a lot of weekends in the back woods cutting firewood to heat the house with in the winters. We each had our jobs. My Dad cut down the trees and my mom would clean off the branches and make a brush pile of the unusable twigs and smaller branches. My older brother got to yield an axe on occasion, or make a few well directed cuts with the chainsaw. I got to mark off the fallen trees with a ruler and a piece of chalk so whoever was cutting would know where to cut so they were uniform in size (that made for easier stacking and helped them fit into the wood stove without a problem) and my sister mostly played out of the way of falling trees and flying wood chips. We'd chop it up into manageable size pieces and then throw it in the back of my dad's old International and bring it up to the house. There we would unload it, chop it up into smaller pieces and stack it to dry out before the winter came. In the down time we'd make playgrounds out of grapevines that were shaped like swings or bounced really well. Cutting wood was hard work but we all did it as a family and it taught me a lot about working together, spending quality time with those you love, and making the best out of what you have.
Nathaniel was playing in what I call the "metal playground" (see photo below) when he said, "Oh, Mom! BEES!" Having been stung by one late last summer, he knows they are not to be messed around with. But at my Mom and Dad's house they are EVERYWHERE and hard to avoid! I can't remember a summer growing up when I didn't get at least ONE bee sting. They were in the ground when you'd mow over them and piss them off...they'd land on my neck or in my hair and I'd reactively pinch them by tilting my head down to my shoulder. Finding this bee family swarming in a steel pipe in the "metal playground" did not surprise me and I'm just glad Nathaniel knew better than to try and pick up these "bugs" like he does all other "bugs" he finds!!
This is a barn at my parents' house which also houses a lot of flashback memories. Going way back more than 20 years ago, I'd say, we built that barn (as a family) from the concrete slab to the roof. My Aunt and Uncle came over to help with a couple of Dad's friends and we cranked that out in no time! We even got to put our handprints in the cement floor after it was poured, leveled, and started to harden. When it was new (and empty) we made it into our own personal roller rink. We used to skate around the downstairs and dreamed about throwing fantastic Halloween parties in there. As my dad settled in it had tools and old parts to things strewn about. Then we put on the goat shed off the side where our goats and bunnies lived. We spent many years trucking back and forth to that barn in the rain, snow, and freezing cold to feed our rabbits, change their water, and hold them. The rabbits eventually all died and Dad sold the goats off to someone. I hadn't been in there in quite a while. Most recently I stop in to find my father when he's working "in the shop". He added on to the back to make a blacksmith shop for his business. It's pretty stinky when he's working but I love to watch him hammering out his steel, twisting it, turning it, heating it up again and banging on it until it turns into the beautiful candle holder or wine bottle display rack that he envisioned in his head. There is also a treasure trove of memories stored on the second floor of that barn: Old dollhouses, kitchen sets that "Santa" brought me when I was 4 years old and ancient play sets that entertained us for hours. With a weekend to explore up there I can only imagine the memories we'd uncover!
A walk down memory lane would not be complete without a glimpse at my childhood listening preferences. Oh yeah! NKOTB. Need I say more?
While looking for something in my basement "junk/scrapbooking room" I found these. Does anyone even still USE these old 3.5 disks (is that even what they're called?!?) I don't even think computers have a slot for that size disk anymore!! Now what good is all that info on those disks?!?
One stack of the thousands (no exaggeration!) of photos I have laying around in my "junk room". Someday I'll get some of these scanned for future Flashback Friday fun!!