Friday, January 13, 2006

Time Machine Tour: Kindergarten

I attended the very first year of free Kindergarten available in Louisiana, MO in 1968-1969. The school itself was designed in a revolutionary way, with multiple circles conjoined with movable walls. I was excited to attend real school, after playing pretend school with Lisa Atterberry.

Some people bought fancy naptime mats for their kids, but most of us used multi-colored rag rugs.

I had my tonsils and adenoids removed during this time. I guess I had been sick a lot. While in the hospital (back then you stayed a couple of days), I enjoyed having visitors. Wade and I stayed in the same room (he had 3 different surgeries). Aunt Jean brought me a REAL toy tea set that I LOVED. I wish I still had it! I remember my first meal after coming home was eggs over easy with toast. (Why do I remember things like that but not important things?!)

Because I had been sick so much, I was used to being home and getting coddled by Mommy. So, even after I was well, I would SAY I was sick, with little problems, so Mommy would arrange for me to be picked up from school (I don't think she started driving until I was in middle school). She called my bluff and told me if I was THAT sick, I would have to stay in bed with no TV and no playtime and no snacks. It worked. I began to love school after that! I'm not sure what year she called my bluff, but it was while I was in elementary school, for sure.

I recall Darren Goodhart reading to us. We all thought it was so cool that he could read, because we were just learning our alphabet at that point. I wanted to be like him, so I learned as quickly as I could-and words have been my friends ever since.

Sometime around this age, our town had its Sesquacatenial. Dad grew a beard and Mom made us all old fashioned clothing to wear for the big parade and celebration.

Not long after that, we were to go to Oklahoma to visit family, but also because Little Grandma (my great grandmother Lamb) was on her death bed. I did not know she was that sick, and all I could think of was showing her my old-fashioned dress and hat. My hat looked similar to the hats that Little Grandma wore all the time to protect her skin from the sun. Sort of a Little House on the Prairie style. When we got to Oklahoma, everyone was crying and wearing black. Little Grandma had already died. Aunt Billi was doing Granny's hair for the funeral, and our time was very different than I had anticipated. This was probably the first time Mom had to explain death to me.

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