Thursday, August 2, 2007

Nostalgia

Nostalgia---oh what a wonderful thing. Sometimes, it is our gentle reminder that things weren't always amok in our lives. Sometimes it is the spontaneous recollection of those little tidbits of history that brings us so much joy. Sometimes it is that last little thread that ties to those memories that we would like to hold onto for an eternity.

This morning, when I opened my bag of popcorn and the flavorful aroma emerged from the bag, I instantly thought of when my mother (during one of her very few sober times when I was a kid) used to make Jiffy Pop on the stove in the little aluminum pan with the handle...whether it was for eating during a movie or to string for the Christmas tree, it always made me feel a sense of coziness and brought a smile to my face. So then I began to think of other things that happen in my every day life that are nostalgic...

Cardboard boxes: Who didn't make an attempt to build a club house? We attempted to build one every day, and even on occasion tried to augment our strategy by outlining it with random bricks and huge rocks that we found in the neighborhood! We had the bare necessities that we managed to scrounge up such as newspaper (for sitting), lunch meat (for dinner), toys, and a roll of toilet paper. I always have a little giggle when I think of how many countless times we attempted this task and NEVER could quite get it!

"Penny" candy: Now & Laters, Chick-o-Sticks, Boston Baked Beans, Lemonheads...the list goes on and on! Remember you could actually get them for 5 cents or cheaper??? Well the aforementioned list reminds me of the local dairy which happened to be right across the street form where I grew up. I thought I was the epitome of "the shit" when I was allowed to cross the street at 5 years-old to get my grandmother's newspaper, Wonder bread, and yes....penny candy!

"The Green Thing:" I never really quite knew what to call that...I think it controlled some kind of power source in the neighborhood, but to us, it was also known as "base." We played hide-and-go-seek for HOURS when they put that thing next door! *Shouting* "Ice in a glaaaassss....Kool-Aid!"

Ham Hocks cooking on Sunday morning: Every time I make a hearty Sunday dinner of greens, baked barbecue chicken, macaroni & cheese (from scratch), candied yams, and cornbread, I think of Sunday morning at Grandma's. The boiling pot emits a misty steam that plasters to the window...oh the days I used to write my name in the fog, and wait *im*patiently for my taste tester of those wonderfully sweet candied yams!

Warm, sunny Saturday mornings: Waking up early at Grandma's for Cream of Wheat and toast while I wait for the Saturday morning line up, Smurfs, the Snorkles, and Alvin & The Chipmunks (and if I was lucky, the Chipettes were on that episode)!

Boy, those were the days....

In comments, does anyone else miss their Grandma so much they could cry, why was it called penny candy if it never cost a penny, and what the hell happened to good cartoons???

21 comments:

Susan said...

One of my grandmothers (nanny) died when I was in the fourth grade. To this day my heart aches for her. I remember she used to make rice crispy treats. They were wonderful. I've never, ever been able to make them as good as she did. Every time I eat one it makes me a little sad.

We also used to make and can blackberry jam. It was horribly hard work but I'd not hesitate the hard work to be able to do it with her again. On the same line, my pop (her husband) died a year later. He always smelled like onions and green beans. It's weird the things that'll bring up memories..

Tera said...

Susan~It truly is...the brain is weird like that! Thanks for sharing :)

Dagromm said...

I miss both of my grandmothers a great deal. I loved sitting around the table playing poker and other card games with them.

When I was a kid, I was all about money. One of the things I used to do was to spend my allowance on penny candy so that I could break it up and sell it for a profit at school. I was never a big fan of most of it myself (exception: Jolly Ranchers) which I suppose is a good thing, because I never dipped into my supply.

We used to draw on the inside of the large cardboard box to make it into a space ship. Then one of us would get inside and the others would roll him around. It was just about the best thing ever.

Tera said...

Dagromm~Awesome! My favorite card game to play with my Grandma was Gin Rummy!

You were quite the hustler there with the penny candy huh? How could you NOT like chick-o-sticks and Boston Baked Beans???? They were the shiznit!

Are you sure the space ship thing was a back-in-the-day thing? Somehow I am convinced that is a present day thing in Crotch Wizardland!

Dagromm said...

Tera - Given the opportunity I would definitely go for a roll in a box!

Kofi said...

my grandma keys people's cars when people park in her parking space. Her birthday is next week. This post reminded me I should probably go visit.

Tera said...

Tera~How did I know that already?!

Kofi~Uh...hmmm, well, I guess you know where NOT to park???

Nance said...

Oh, honey, you're just not old enough--like me--to remember real penny candy! It did actually cost a penny! Things like BB Bats, a strip of candy dots on paper, licorice sticks, string-handled lollipops, jawbreakers, sourballs, wax bottles (called Nik-l-Nips), wax lips, and all the stuff that now costs so much more. Heck, I used to get a pea shooter for a penny, then get a bag of peas for a nickel and spend the afternoon sharpening my skills on my sister.

I miss my grandma, too. She used to call lunch "dinner", serve bread and her homemade "preserves" at every single meal, and make pies with the weirdest fruits I had ever heard of: elderberries, ground cherries, rhubarb. But I learned to adore rhubarb.

Hey, Tera--when you come to Ohio, I want an invite to your Sunday dinner. It sounds fantastic.

Tera said...

Nance~I LOVE Nik-l-Nips! I remember at a certain local Pharmacy (by the hospital-I'm sure you know which one I speak of) you could get Mary Janes and some of the others you mentioned for a penny!

Wow your grandmother sure knew how to please your tastebuds I'm sure! I love preserves!

Sure thing Nance...I can definitely cook up a storm!!!

Belle - A Beauty livin with her Beast said...

my cousin and i would make a house with blankets and the chairs from my grandma's table. we always made sure we had a tunnel to connect the 2...i liked this blog, and now i am going to build a house.....

Tera said...

Belle~Oh. My. Goodness. We did those too!!!!!!!!!! Loved it! And you wanna know something exciting? My kids do it too, and I didn't even encourage it! Awesomeness!

Anali said...

I miss my grandmothers too and sometimes do cry. I dream about them a lot and feel like it's their way of keeping in touch with me.

heather said...

my maternal grandmother died long before i was born and i only met my paternal grandmother once. i do remember that she grew 'maryjane' in her garden right next to the tomatoes and mint. lol

penny candy was a penny years ago, you're just too young to remember it.

Kofi said...

No worries about that, tera. I think my grandma likes me. Besides, the family says out of everyone I act most like her.

Judging from what you already know of her, I'm not sure this is a compliment though...

Tera said...

Anali~I believe it is...do you notice the sense of hapiness and safety you feel when you dream those dreams?

Heather~Ahh the things we remember! Oh and trust me...my mom makes me jealous when she tells me about how she used to go to the store with 25 cents and clean up!

Kofi~LOL! Now this does pose a very important question...what do you do when someone parks in YOUR spot?

Cyber D said...

Good cartoons are out there but sometimes hard to find. Try The Venture Brothers. It's greatness.

Tera said...

Cyber D~I might have to check it out! Thanks!

AVIANA said...

hi chicki!

well, i think techonology is what happened to good cartoons...

it's made them look more life like but everything else has made the simpler things gone bad...oh well

funny...i miss being a starving dancer in NYC...the adult life of sitting on my butt for 15 hour days to make good money to have a decent place and nice furniture and pay my school loans is not so great really... :)

Tera said...

Aviana~Yes, sometimes, money does not necessarily equal happiness :)

Susan said...

I'd like to point out that since the new avatar you post less. I think the boobage is distracting you.

Tera said...

Susan~LMAO!!! SOMETHING is distracting me...I think I caught whatever it is that Fringe and Mist have! I have a couple of good ideas for my next post though!