Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Week 6 of 2014 - Winter Games

Not quite the Olympics but in our neighborhood we had plenty of ways to have fun in the winter.  While we did not play outdoors quite as often as the summer, it was so much fun when we did.  We had a pond in a farmer's field that we skated on.  We often pretended we would be in the Olympics....twirling around on one skate, skating backwards and forwards, trying to do fancy tricks....or racing each other as fast as we could.  Sometimes on Saturday or Sunday afternoon we were able to round up enough kids for a hockey game.  It was probably my least favorite game and if there were enough other kids I would opt out because it always seemed that I would get that line drive hockey puck in  the shin...It hurt like the dickens and would send me limping across the field toward home.

We liked to sled.  We had saucers and sleds but in 1962 for Christmas we got a toboggan...OK it is not the "Luge" just a big toboggan full of kids.  Dad loved  playing in the snow with his kids!!! We had several good sledding hills but sometimes it was just as much fun just pulling us around in the yard.  Our favorite sledding hill was a hike of a couple of miles...trudging thru deep snow all bundled up in many layers of clothes,scarfs and mittens. We would stand on the top of the hill and it would felt like a mountain.  Dad would get us to all seated in our place on the toboggan with him in the back...He would give us a running push and jump on....Swish.... down the hill we went...wind and snow blowing in our faces.  We would scream and laugh. All too soon the ride would be over and we would be making the long climb back up to the top of the hill with Dad lugging up the toboggan.  As we neared the top of the hill, the excitement would build all over again! Sometimes we would spend several hours out in the wood at the sled hill.

Mom must have been in 7th heaven when Dad took all of us to go sledding.  Peace and quiet for a couple of hours.  If she was lucky, the boys would nap and it would really be quiet until we all came home and dumped our wet snow filled clothes and boots at the door with the expectations of having a cup of hot steaming cocoa to warm us up.

We received games  and puzzles for Christmas.  I suppose it was to help pass the time indoors when the weather was so bad. 

Christmas of 1962, Mom, Pam and Grandma Smith are playing Pam's new Christmas game while Sue and her new doll watch them.

Jigsaw puzzles were another favorite winter activity.  We had wonderful neighbors who we spent Christmas night with each year, Dee and Jake Jacobsen and their children.   They were from Nebraska and Colorado and stayed home (Michigan) at Christmas time because it was just too far to go for Christmas with family.  They became our Mom and Dad's best friends! (and ours too!) Our Christmas night activities were a special time for all of us. We spent Christmas day with my Dad's parents.  Grandpa was in a wheel chair so Dad would go get them in the morning and Jake would ride along to help him.  Then late afternoon, Jake and Dad would take them back home. 

Dee and the kids would come over to our house and our Christmas evening would begin. We ate left overs from Christmas dinner and had a special ginger ale sherbet punch!  Every year we did a puzzle. At first, it was an adult only activity, because they were afraid we would lose a puzzle piece but as we got older it became a group activity that we all participated in. Often the table was not big enough for all to gather around the puzzle which sometime resulted in a squabble or two.  "MOM, Sue won't move over so I can do the puzzle too!" I would whine.   This usually resulted in Mom saying "  If you can't behave go find something else to do!" All the while she and Dee are hunting for that next piece of the puzzle.  It was not uncommon for us to start and finish a puzzle in one evening. Dad and Jake would return and join in on the fun.

This was another of our Christmas games.  A game called Kaboom I do not know who got this game but the adults sure loved it!  They played with it all evening.  We are a game playing family. We still are and always will be!



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