Last night I mowed the lawn in my snow boots because I couldn't find my "old" shoes. As I walked outside in my shorts and snow boots, my 8 year old daughter had a terrified look on her face. I can only imagine the thoughts running through her head. My mom used to torture me as a kid and now I am doing the same to my daughter. Funny how that works.
I remember some of things my mom did when my brothers and I were growing up. I can remember on long road trips my mom would tell us to look for a certain kind of tree. It was usually those really tall and skinny pine trees. She told us that elves lived in those tress and if we yelled loud enough when we passed by they would give us treats, but we had to be quiet while "looking" for the trees. Sure enough, we would spot the said trees and begin yelling "ELFY! ELFY!" My mom would then say "I think I see one over there, look!" We would turn our heads and out of nowhere candy was being thrown into the back seat of the car. We would then wait patiently until the next tree was found. One time, three cans of soda were hurled into the back seat. Amazing. This was all fun and I must say it passed the time. However, I discovered that not EVERYBODY looked for elves while in the car. I was traveling with a friend and when I saw a tall skinny pine tree I began to yell "ELFY, ELFY." My friends' family just stared at me. I was embarrassed and never yelled for elves again.
I grew up in Pella and we made many trips to Des Moines. The trip was about an hour which as a kid seemed like a LONG time. To get to Des Moines we had to pass through this tiny town called Otley. There were no stop lights or stop signs but there was a speed limit of 35 mph. When we got close to the town of Otley my mom, in her best pilot voice, would say "Pilot to co-pilot, we are approaching Otley." Whoever was in the passenger side of the car was the co-pilot. (That was before airbags) My mom would then turn on the windshield wipers, the hazard lights, turn up the radio, and punch the gas. We had to roll the windows down (even in the winter). Instead of slowing down through Otley, we would "fly" through Otley. She would swerve a little. The co-pilot had to make sure the runway was clear and the backseat passengers were okay. Once we were out of Otley, the windows were rolled up, the hazards were turned off, and the wipers stopped. I always wondered what would happen if we got pulled over. I think my mom would just say that we were flying through Otley. We never did get pulled over.
My mom was, and still is, a little kooky. She even embarrassed me a little, okay, A LOT. I have more stories about my mom and perhaps they will surface another day. Mostly I remember having a lot of fun with my mom. I hope my kids are having a lot of fun with me. Sure, I might embarrass them a little here and there, but hopefully the fun far outweighs the embarrassment. I might just mow the yard every time in my snow boots.
What embarrassing or fun stories do you have from your childhood?