- There was a a water run off area in our neighborhood growing up. As a kid I thought it was a river as an adult I'm fairly certain is was a glorified gutter. Nevertheless it had trees and plants growing in it and it was somewhat secluded. I remember going there several times with Nathan, Spencer, and various other neighborhood friends. We gave it a name. I don't remember what it was just that it was epic. Anyway, one day Nathan and I were playing "jump across the river of death" when I stumbled and landed on my knees. Nathan walked over and said "it's a good thing you didn't land right here" he pointed to a plant, "this is stinging nettle". Keep in mind that we were probably five or six. I asked him what would have happened if I had touched it. He proceeded to tell me that thorns from stinging nettle can make your hand explode. For reasons I don't understand, I thought that would be pretty cool. I took a thorn off the plant and stabbed my palm with it. My hand did not explode. However, I do have a scar to this day.
- One time when Nathan and I were really little we snuck off at the end of church and tried to switch clothes. We were positive that our parents would take the wrong kid home if we did this. I am fairly sure we made our parents frantic because Nathan couldn't get my tights on so they couldn't find us. I don't remember much of this actual event except for being ready much sooner than he was.
- At school we used to have a special place for discussions. Whenever we needed to talk we would meet on the playground under the big slide.
- One day we decided that we were going to meet one important person a week. We immediately walked to our bishops house and introduced ourselves. The next week we carefully made sure that we were in the hall at the right time to see the principal walk out of his office. Then we stopped.
2. I used to have a friend with a really cool backyard. He was two or three years older than me but when you are five that seems like a lot. Whenever I was at his house, he used to give me "climbing lessons". From what I recall, this consisted of me trying to scale fences, climb trees, and walk on brick walls and shed roofs. There was an especially tricky wall with a tree next to it which you had to go all the way around. Picture small me hugging a tree that's twice my arm span trying not to fall into the neighbors backyard (they had a big scary dog). I never did fall. I often went home scraped up but I think I passed climbing lessons.
3. In second or third grade, I had one really good friend. I moved at the end of first grade and had kind of a hard time adjusting. Anyway, I had my one really good friend (who was a girl, which was a new experience for me) and we spent all of our time together. We had all of these imaginary friends who were tiny people. At recess, we would collect objects (grass, leaves, bark, etc.) and make them tiny houses. These people had entire lives that we built. We wrote stories about them in class and did things with them outside of school and generally made sure they always had houses. This might be one of the reasns I was a hermitish child :)
4. A couple of years later, my one really good friend moved. Now, I wasn't about to play with the imaginary people alone but I didn't know how to make friends. I did however find another person to play with who was kind of a misfit as well. We didn't do much except wander. My only really clear memories of him are negative. I remember one time he told me I was fat. He didn't say it in a mean way, more just like a fact, but I was devastated. I was probably 10 or 11 at the time, already self conscious, and chunkier than I would have liked to be. Those words haunted me for years.
5. I was once at a sleepover for one of the girls in my ward. This was my first sleepover with a whole bunch of people. We did not sleep at all ( something I have never been very good at). In fact I was scared to fall asleep because I didn't know what they would do to me if I did. In the middle of the night a car backfired right outside the house. One of the girls convinced us that it was a gun not a car and for the rest of the night we talked about death and murder and I couldn't sleep at all. When I got home the next day, I got banned from sleepovers because I was less than pleasant company after one. For the most part that suited me just fine. I liked sleep more than parties. Not much has changed.
6. My mom was doing an activity at my house either for young woman's or achievement days when I was 11 or 12. Me and the other girls were playing outside. Spencer had a set up plastic golf clubs that he was showing off with. We were playing on the swing ignoring him. Suddenly a golf club came flying down and hit one of my friends in the head. We looked at him as he guiltily ran away. He had used the clothes line as a bow to project the golf club at us. My friend did a fairly good job at keeping it together. I remember that we ended up sitting on the wall in my backyard with a piece of chalk forming the bandaid club. There were four of us up there all with various scratched and scraps from that one week of summer. We signed our names on the top of the wall as a symbol that our club would last forever.
7. When I first moved to sandy I was invited to play with one of the girls in the ward. Se taught me how to play life and we choreographed a dance to one of the backstreet boys songs. I think the whole dance consisted of cartwheels.
8. In sixth grade we had a valentines day dance. It was legit. We had dance cards and everything. The only problem with it was tha sixth graders don't necessarily want to dance with each other. The cards were filled out in class the day before and I remember that I had a mix of friends and loners on my card. I was not one of the girls who "dated" or even caught the passing interest of 11 year old boys. That was fine with me right up until this dance. I had more than one boy that I intensely disliked on my dance card and more than one boy that I secretly had a crush on on my dance card. It's amazing how many people you can have a crush on at once. Anyway, when the dance started it didn't matter which boy it was the whole thing was terribly awkward. It was one of the most miserable valentines days of my life (and i spent a lot of valentines days single) and possibly left me with permanent emotional damage. That is why I don't make my kids do dances as a teacher.
9. One time I was playing with two of my neighborhood friends. One started talking about how hungry she was and the other one jumped out of his seat and yelled " my banana bread is burning!" He then proceeded to jump on his bike and ride back to his house to get his banana bread out of the oven. I don't think it made it.
10. At the beginning of middle school hotmail instant messaging became really popular. I remember running home from school and logging on to the dial up Internet and turning my account on just to see who I could cyber chat with. Much like texting I was far braver about what I said when I didn't have to say it in person. Anyway, one time three of us were at my friends house taking turns talking to this boy we all thought was hot. He didn't know we were all talking to him but we didn't care. Then the friend whose house we were at had to go to some kind of practice. Me and my other friend stayed at her house while she was gone talking to this boy. No one else was home. I think we were there for a few hours until her family got home for dinner.
11. All the kids in the neighborhood were playing outside one day in the summer. I think we were having a water fight because I wasn't wearing my shoes, they were in someone's house. My friend's parents came and extracted her from the water fight to take her out to dinner. It was a while before I realized that my shoes were locked in her house. We tried to break in (me and house breaking friend had succeeded in a breaking in at her house once) and failed because we thought they wouldn't appreciate a broken window for a pair of flip flops. I walked home in my bare feet. The whole block and a half.
12. When pirates of the Caribbean came out I was in love with Orlando bloom, as we're several of my friends. On opening night we went to see the show. We loved it and walked home without shoes (because pirates don't wear shoes. . .?) we sang the pirate song the whole way. We got home around midnight with very black feet.
13. In high school several of us were hanging out across the street at a friends house. We left late and came back to my house. One of my friends stayed at my house quite a while before deciding to leave. When she went to go she realized she had left her purse at our other friends house. It was probably after midnight at that point. We called and texted our other friend but she didn't reply. We decided to go over and see if her light was on. We looked at her house and her bedroom light was off. We walked to the back of the house (yes in the backyard) and saw that the bathroom light was on. We started knocking on the window and calling her name. Lucky for us it was her in there, though I think we scared her to death.
14. The first Halloween of high school a friend and I went to another friends house. We had a Halloween party with the three of us. We ate lots of pixie six and watched a movie. We went to the Halloween party at that same friends house every year for several years it got bigger and bigger but that first year was the most memorable.
15. For the last two years of high school I would like to think I had a frisbee team. It wasn't really a team but spencer and I could usually pull together a big enough group of people every Friday night to play ultimate. One of our friends hardly ever took the game seriously. He was always doing twirly ninja tosses and failing to run after the frisbee. One time though things were different. The frisbee was on its way to becoming a point and it was all up to him. He ran after it and when he turned around to check his progress he ran right into a fence. Covered with thorns. He caught the frisbee but when he emerged from the thorny bush he and it were both scraped up and stabbed.
16. One Halloween, me and a friend were heading to another friends house. She had a house that was rather secluded for being in the middle of a city. We were driving down the dirt road to her house when out of her cornfield jumped a grown man in a terrifying mask. Now this would have been scary by itself, but I had always feared that someone would jump out of that corn and get me. We made it to our house with the creepy guy following us and decided to risk getting out of the car. He didn't say a word just followed two steps behind us to her door. Luckily he wasn't a killer just a chiropractor.
17. I had a sleepover, I think it was during my last year of high school, with a friend who also liked to actually sleep. We planned to go to lagoon the next day but when we woke up she didn't feel very good. So, instead we went to the library rented any number of bizarre movies and watched them all day while eating junk food. Coincidentally, I went with this same friend to lagoon a couple of months ago. She was also sick that day but stuck it out for the kids. My theory is that lagoon makes her sick.
Now, this is just a handful of random memories. I want to write a part two to this post. If you made it all the way through and have a good memory you have shared with me please message, text, or comment. If you know one of these stories is about you and are okay with me putting your name and picture in please let me know that as well. Except you, Nathan. You don't get a vote.