There are only a few things I recall from the first grade. In Demotte Indiana, we lived on 3 acres and had horses, geese and a couple dogs. There are several things I recall from that time, but only 3 from my time in school. One was a large globe in the hallway we could spin as we walked by. The other two were recess memories. In our playground it was fenced in for us smaller kids and the slightly older kids were in the outside of the fence. It didn’t seem fair so I busted out one time through the kids that made sure we didn’t get out. Funny thing is, I have no memory I can recall, as to what I did once I was out. The other thing I recall was a bee landing on my head, so I didn’t move the whole recess until the bell rang, hoping it wouldn’t sting me. I wasn’t even sure it had stayed on my head or not.
These things mean nothing to me, but yet I remember them and I do not know why. I am sure there are things I would like to remember which I cannot. As a parent, especially today I continually think of how I can impress upon my children with remembrances. The experiences, small yet valuable togetherness, chores, work ethics and kind endeavors on the few days I get to see them.
It’s not always fun, but I try to make it interesting, when we’re planting our garden. For example a couple weeks ago, I was able determine which of my boys would eat a worm and at what price point. It was about a 10 minute internal struggle with my youngest, and a cost of $10 for me. Perhaps not a memory worth any notation on his future resume, but we can look back upon and laugh, especially when we mention the crunch it made when I said he shouldn’t swallow it whole.
It’s funny and not, how bees and worms can have an effect on us in such small ways, yet these small creatures have such a large impact on us all. Worms turn refuse into nutrient rich soil, bees pollinate our flowers, fruit and nut trees and provide us with honey.
As the youngest of 4, and the only family member born in Indiana, and raised on the 20 acre farm we moved to from the 2nd grade on, rural small farm life was my life. Now we had not only horses, but cows, chickens, goats, pigs and a large garden and homemade everything. Cutting wood to stack and prepare for winter to heat our house. Carrying from outside into a box inside for the night. I don’t miss that, but I kind of miss that at the same time.
I guess all this means that you do not know what memories you will have or what chore, or experience you will carrier with you into adulthood, which may make the difference. But the fact is, if they do not have a variety of good, tough, fun, and sometimes bad, yet growth building experiences, their future may be bleak or a greater struggle than need be.
We as adults now from urban or suburban upbringings and have not had rural experiences, living in today’s society rarely contemplate the literal efforts involved in making and doing it ourselves. I mean the simple things like making your own garden, digging a hole, mowing your own yard, creating something just from thinking about it, and going out to the garage and just making it.
Thanks for reading, and forgive me for going out there on a slightly different and less hard-hitting topic which may seem incongruent.
Oh ya, and one other thing. China. Just say no.