23 April 2015

What I Remember About My Childhood

what I remember about my childhood

Having been born in the mid 70’s, there was nothing better than growing up as a child in the 80’s and into the early 90’s. The hair was high, the neon was bright and the music? The music was simply the best of any decade since, hands down. The 80’s had their own unique set of challenges but for most families during this time, life was pretty great – at least from my memory and recollection. 

Yesterday, I read this article by Jen Hatmaker where she talked about her memories of being raised as a child in the 80’s and how parenting seemed to stick to the basics and fundamental principles of live and let live and simplistic parenting. As a child who grew up in the 80’s, there was a sense of community with the families in our neighborhood that you rarely, if ever, find today. I clearly remember my parents standing outside at the end of our driveway talking with the other moms and dads in our neighborhood for hours. They did this a lot and often because all of us kids made it a point to terrorize each other’s homes. Back then in those days as a parent, you could open your front door, shew your kids out of the house and feel confident and safe knowing whose home they were going into. My mother was notorious for telling me, “If the sun is shining, your butt better be outside. Don’t let me find you in this house or in front of the TV. Get outside and play.” 

And play we did.

We would run our neighborhood like a pack of wild wolves with reckless abandon. We hit the ground running when the sun came up and came back home when the sun started to go down. Hours were spent riding bikes and skateboarding down the hill at the end of our road. I bet if you asked my mom, she couldn’t even begin to tell you the number of times she played nurse as I would come home with skinned up knees, legs and arms. We would spend time playing in the creek and woods that lined our subdivision and when we were hungry, we would run inside to someone’s home (usually not our own) for a quick bologna sandwich, some chips and a slurp of soda and back out we went. My friends and I would spend hours upon hours meticulously planning and recreating scenes from movies like Star Wars and Annie and would “perform” them in the front yard for the world to see. 

It was really a glorious and amazing time to be a kid. 

As I read Jen’s article yesterday, it got me thinking about how wonderfully simple and great my childhood was. Sure, our family had bumps in the road and hiccups along the way but for the most part, life was good. During my trip down memory lane, I started to think about all the wonderfully silly, funny and great memories I have from my childhood…

·         Watching Star Search on Saturday nights while trying to find a way to be a dance contestant on the show.
·         My dad smoking his pipes in the evening while in his recliner, reading his collection of National Geographic Magazines.
·         Me looking at the issues of Nat Geo where they showed boobies and body parts and giggling and laughing until I couldn’t stand it.
·         Teasing up my hair and getting my “mall bangs” just right for Friday night’s spent at the mall with friends.
·         The simplicity and joy of the popsicle and ice cream truck in our neighborhood
·         Family television in the evenings you felt good about sharing with your whole family, even the kiddos: The Cosby Show, Alf, Mr. Belvedere, Webster and my personal favorite, Benson.
·         My Commodore 64 which mostly got used to play Frogger and Ghostbusters.
·         The movies. Best ever.
·         My boom box and all the mixed tapes I made.
·         The first VCR our family bought. I remember thinking that piece of technology was the best thing EVER.
·         The Walkman.
·         VHS tapes and cassette tapes.
·         Pound Puppies, Garbage Pail Kids and Cabbage Patch Dolls.
·         Space exploration and consequently, watching the Challenger explosion live. It was the first tragedy I remember.
·         Madonna, Michael Jackson, Prince, Duran Duran, The Police. LOVE.
·         “I want my MTV!” Some of you may not know this, but there was a time when MTV actually only played music videos. It’s not an urban legend.
·         The video arcade where Pac Man and Donkey Kong were king.
·         Weekends spent at the roller skating rink with friends or for birthday parties.
·         Perms, mullets, jerry curls and fades.
·         Member’s Only jackets, shoulder pads, leather-studded jackets, acid washed jeans and Jordach.
·         Converse high top sneakers.
·         Swatch watches, slap bracelets and endless amounts of rubber wristbands worn all the way up to your shoulders.
·         Jelly shoes.
·         Plastic charm necklaces with the click on charms and banana hair clips.
·         Metal lunch boxes with cool thermoses.
(That little girl you see? That's me at my mom and dad's wedding in 1980. This is one of my favorite pics from childhood.)

Life as a child of the 80’s was definitely far out. What do you remember about your childhood? What era did you grow up in? What do you miss about that time in your life?

Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup
Courtney @ Shiraz In My Sippy Cup

Courtney is a published author, mom, taco enthusiast, and a Star Wars and Tennessee Volunteers fanatic. She's never met a piece of sushi she didn’t like and enjoys an amazing glass of wine and a great cut of meat. You can read more of her wine-induced, sleep-deprived adventures on The Huffington Post and Scary Mommy.


  1. Oh how adorable you are! I loved your look back. It made me remember being little, catching fireflies with my twin sister and playing all day in the yard. Good memories

  2. Sometimes I get sad when I think that I'll never get to be a child again. That's why I can't wait to have kids of my own :)

  3. I agree it defanilty felt simplier! I remember sometimes going to "day camp" and handful of other summer activities but basically we just played and had fun.