Thursday, January 30, 2014

Week 4 of 2014 - Grade school memories ....

Many of my early grade school memories revolve around recess.  Humm....Wonder what that means?

My favorite activity was to play marbles during recess.  Can't help but wonder if I was good at it or not. Probably not,  knowing how uncompetitive I am today!  And I suppose if I was, I would have remember, do you think?   So this is what I remember, we used to line up along the school building wall where we had dug holes or depressions in the dirt. I was never afraid of getting dirty!  We still wore dresses everyday but I wore a pair of pants or shorts underneath so the boys could not see anything that they shouldn't.  I always felt more comfortable in pants but it just wasn't the way we dressed in those days. I sure wish I has a picture of it! Me in a cute little dresses and a pair of pants on with holes in the knees!  I can just see it.  That is another thing about the time period that is so different today.  Today we take pictures of everything!   Since pictures are digital and require no processing we can do that!  But back then, you had to get a picture developed so we did not take as many pictures and certainly did not take pictures of little girls half dressed in play clothes and half dressed in church clothes!!!!

Back to marbles.... Our marble playing field consisted of a hole in the ground which was about one foot from the exterior wall of the school.  There were marble holes every few feet the full length of the school. I remember standing against the brick wall of the school over the hole. My marble was in the hole challenging other students to come and hit it. Each kid had their favorite spot. I remembered days when the sun shone on the school, warming the wall. It would feel so good as I leaned against the warm bricks on a cold winter day. I wish I could remember the rules...I can not. I remember that you never put your favorite marble in the hole for fear that your opponent would hit it and take it home with them!  You only make that mistake once! I remember grabbing my marble bag everyday as we ran for the bus. I would have rather forget my lunch than my marble bag! The bag was made for me by my mother out of corduroy fabric. It was tied with a white shoe lace! There were lots of beautiful marbles in it so...I must have been pretty good! When the recess bell rang we would run for our spot along the wall of the building and hope that someone would want to play.

 I was really quite the “Tom” boy, not that I realized it.  It was just how I was.   Not much of a girl except I did like to play jump rope. The swing sets was another favorite too. I loved to swing as high as I could often jumping out as a means of getting off the swing. It was a wonder I did not break my neck! I was always frustrated by the monkey bars. My upper body strength was never strong enough to swing from rug to rug like so many of the other kids did. Sometimes they seemed to be able to swing for hours just like monkeys. Not me...It was pretty hard work.

The first "girlie" thing I remember was from third grade.  I had a teacher who got married during the school year.  It seems to me that she became Mrs French but I am pretty bad with remembering names.   She was pretty, always well dressed with just the right accessories including the right shoes and perfectly done makeup. She was beautiful.  She also had perfectly manicured nails.  I had never known  anyone who painted their nails.  She took such good care of hers.  From the first day that I saw them, I knew I wanted mine to be just like hers but there was a big problem.  I bit my nails so badly.  I chewed my finger until they bled...I would have to work very hard to over come this bad little habit.

For the next few months, we would hear all about the planned wedding.  Wedding showers, her dress, the honeymoon.  We had a small party for her a few days before the wedding.  The week of her honeymoon we had a substitute teacher. I thought of her all week and wondering if she was having fun. When she got back, she looked so happy and radiant.  After she got their photos developed, she shared a few with us.  Getting to share the planning process of this teacher's wedding enable me to realize that maybe it was OK to be a girl after all.  It was during third grade that I stop my nail biting habit and learned that bad habits can be broken.

To this day, I am still not what I would call a "girlie girl"...  It simply does not fit into my comfort zone.  No makeup or dyed hair for me. I would rather have on a comfy pair of jeans and hiking boots but I do still have nice nails and they hold up well even when I am digging in the dirt!   And if I break one, "oh well, it will grow back!"

So there you have it...a little bit about  grade school memories!

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