Monday, July 25, 2011

Remembering More Summer Days

Like I mentioned yesterday, my mom worked when I was a kid which meant when summer rolled around each year I spent my days with either my grandparents or my aunts (or any combination of these).

Most of the time, I was with my Aunt Char, probably because my cousin Kelly and I were close, both in age and in our relationship. But sometimes I'd be with my Aunt Colleen, and what I remember most about that is doing my cousin Danni's hair. She had the cutest, curliest hair, and if she was in a very good mood or I could talk her into it, she'd let me get the basket of hair things out of the hall closet and sit and do her hair over and over and over again. I wish I had some pictures of the "hair styles" I subjected her to, poor kid. But it was so much fun, and I remember being disappointed if Danni was in too persnickety of a mood to let me do it.

When I was with my Aunt Char and Kelly, that usually meant being with my grandma too. The four of us spent many summer days going "gallivanting." This could mean going to garage sales, shopping at Kmart, having lunch at one of their favorite local dives, visiting other relatives, or sometimes a day trip. If we stayed in, I remember very elaborate games of Barbie, and playing on the swing set or in the sand box in the backyard.

Sometimes the day trips would be just the four of us. More than once we drove up to Frankenmuth for the day, primarily, it seems, so that Kelly and I could go shopping in the countless gift shops. (Note to non-Michiganders: Frankenmuth is a German/Bavarian themed touristy town north of Detroit). Other times we would get other cousins involved in our shenanigans, or even my grandpa. My grandpa would sometimes come up with some interesting excursions. One time he took us to tour the salt mines in downtown Detroit. That was pretty neat, and I'm glad I had the chance to do it before they quit doing tours. Other times we'd go to Belle Isle, or Metro Beach (local beach/park), or drive to Lexington (beach town on Lake Huron) for the day.

For years my grandparents had a second home in Lexington, a small one-bedroom mobile home with private beach access. We spent quite a bit of time there when I was a kid. Besides hanging out on the beach, the big deal was to go to the General Store in town for penny candy and ice cream cones (my favorite: Blue Moon). For me, it was just exciting to be somewhere else for awhile.

Here I am all grown up and I still love day trips. I'm so grateful for all those that I had growing up, which helped give me a sense of wanderlust. And for those times in Lexington, when I got to know the fun of staying somewhere other than home.

What were your favorite things to do in the summer when you were growing up?

1 comment:

Diane and Chad said...

I too loved Michigan summers...spent a week for each of about 5 years going to Camp Playfair, a Girl Scout camp just north of Lexington...awesome:)