Small Town Girl

I’m sitting at my laptop without my usual cup of coffee. Instead, I’m sipping on a glass of water. I just got home from a two mile walk, and since exercise was topic of last week’s Spin Cycle, I know you’ll forgive me for this week’s late Spin!

From the time I was 3 years old until I was 12, I lived in a red brick house on a red brick street across from a red brick church. I would walk down the street with my sister to our school, and I would ride my bike to the playground by the water tower in the middle of town. I could walk down the street to buy a gallon of milk for my mom, and go to the post office to pick up our mail from our P.O. box. I had the combination memorized, but I could also ask the postmistress to give me my mail. She knew me, and so did everyone else in town. When I was in sixth grade, every week my sister and I would walk to every house and business in town, distributing an advertising circular. It was our first job.

In our backyard, we had an apple tree and two plum trees. My mom would make plum jelly and homemade applesauce. A huge tractor tire was our sandbox, and my dad build a wooden cover for the sand to keep the town cats out of it. We had an old metal swing set that I used as monkey bars instead of its intended purpose. There was a rhubarb patch in the back with tall, tall dill plants. My sister and I would pick the rhubarb, tear off the huge leaves, rinse the stem under the hose and eat them raw. We would climb our neighbor’s tamarack tree, and then he would come out and yell at us to get down. He wasn’t always that crotchety. He did teach me how to ride a two-wheeler in the alley behind our houses.

As the pastor’s kids, we attended every baptism luncheon and wedding in town. Wedding receptions were held in the gym at the school, with huge tarps protecting the wooden floor. Ham and cheese sandwiches on huge platters would be served, and little plates of dainty, homemade buttermints would be scattered around the table. If the reception was to include dancing, it would be held at the AFW* hut instead. Adults would be dancing inside; kids would be running around the old Air Force airplane outside. There was a cracked hole in the windshield, which we assumed was a bullet hole. Was the body of the pilot still in the cockpit? We weren’t tall enough to look inside the plane discover if it was.

When I was 12, my family moved to the Chicago suburbs. However, I will always consider my hometown to be Buckley, Illinois.

Spin Cycle at Second Blooming

*I can’t remember if AFW is the right acronym!

Also linking up with Coffee Friday today!


The Coffee Shop
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16 Responses to Small Town Girl

  1. Love your blog Ginny Marie! I too grew up in a small town…and there's nothing better than that! So glad to hear you're doing much better!

  2. What great memories to record! We moved to a small town when I started high school. After we moved, I was then "the daughter of the new preacher" … that had never really been a big deal before but it was when we moved to the small town. I have now moved back to that small town (only it is not as small now) but the downtown streets still get closed for fall and spring festivals as well as parades! It does feel nice and I love your descriptions Ginny!

  3. Great memories, I like to reminisce about my childhood too. I grew up in the city, but had a good one. Visiting from SITS!

  4. I've lived in small towns, too and Raleigh is not that big now, but it's not the same as a small town. I miss it, but then I don't miss it. I love being able to have the restaurants, etc so close. Good ones.

  5. I enjoyed reading your post, but excuse me while I drool a little bit over those buttermints… My mom was the unofficial official shower hostess for our church – or at least it seemed that way to me. There were many many baby & wedding showers held in our basement. And I got to eat the mints & nuts & at least one of the little squares of cake… Yum!
    My recent post Seven More Things…

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