Day 20: Some of the Best Things in Life Don’t Cost Much

When I think of my childhood, I remember lots of summer nights playing “becca” (a twisted kind of hide and seek that is best when there are lots of things to hide behind. I have no idea where this game originated. Maybe my dad, maybe my rather resourceful older sister.). The Scouts would stay over sometimes after meeting with whichever parent was the leader of the group and we’d play in the night air, or when we were older we’d invite friends sometimes for a night game.

Then there were the many, many hours we spent sliding down snow piles in front of the yard in old insulation bags–my parents used to sell and install insulation when I was young, so there were plenty to go around. The pile seemed pretty darn big back then–though it was probably really short.

Mom encouraged us to use the old camcorder to film little movies. I remember putting together renditions of Little Red Ridinghood and Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I know there were more, but that’s all that comes to mind. The video tape still needs to be transfered over to DVD for all of the kids to take a copy home. I remember my parents pitching the tent in the yard so we could ‘camp out’ in the back yard, and lots of lazy summer days spent laying on the grass under a shady tree.

These things may not have been as exciting as the family trip to Disneyland, but they are images that stay with me even decades later, memories my parents provided for us at little or no cost to them. Yes, I’ll always remember trips to Lagoon, going to the big Surfaces convention in Las Vegas (a convention for businesses that sell floor coverings). These aren’t the main or most important things to me–regardless of how much fun they were at the time, or how fondly I look back on cramming into a photobooth with my sister and cousins. It was the everyday things that I carry with me, and that I try to share with my many nieces and nephews when they happen to be in town.