Tuesday, April 08, 2008
I dare say the most important times in our children's lives are those times we share with them.
Good or bad, they learn they can count on us; they can count on their family unit. Going on an adventure with one's family is the perfect example. That adventure may be sharing a holiday alone...no extra bodies other than your core group, a vacation to some place familiar or someplace exotic or traveling in a situation which takes you out of your comfort zone.
As a child I grew up camping with my mom, dad and brother. We started out with a tent and quickly moved into a pop-up trailer. Part of our adventure was mapping out where we would go. That task usually fell to the adults, but as children in the household we were privy to the conversations and negotiations. Once we arrived at our destination we all had our "jobs" to do to help set up camp.
But traveling to and from was the best part of the adventure for me. We always went by car which meant we had lots of time for just the four of us. Once packed into our car the "line" was drawn down the middle of the backseat. My brother and I were to stay on our own sides of the car. Air space was usually violated early in the trip which lead to threats of, "Do I need to pull this car over?" We didn't wear seat belts then...and I recall leaning my head over the drivers seat and resting my head on my mom's shoulder. She'd cradle her arm around my little head as I stood in the backseat. If our mom had a sunburn, you could lean forward and peel her back for money. What would the police say today!
On our trip to Colorado dad was very excited because he was going to bring home the prized Coors beer for all his friends and relatives. It really was only sold west of the mighty Mississippi at that time. Driving through the mountains with a trailer in tow and ledges or cliffs to one side was breathtaking even as a child. I remember our parents pulling the car over, us being in shorts and getting out to play in the snow before we descended the other side of the mountain.
We toured the Coors factory and dad got to drink free, fresh samples. I remember my brother and I having something to drink, but it was probably just mountain spring water. Coors beer had these wonderfully ingenious "pop tops" in the day. That too was part of their sell. Two round dots were on top and you pushed them in to drink and vent the aluminum can. Dad bought as many cases of beer as he could stuff into our trailer for the return trip. Each night that we'd stop to camp the precious beer had to be locked into the car. One morning, as we were packing up the trailer the cases must not have been put back exactly right. As dad and mom pushed in one side of the beds to close up the trailer we heard "Pop! Pop! Pop! Pop! Pop!" which was quickly followed by a "G** D*** It!!!!! Trisha quick! Kids get over here and start drinking!" Or something like that. :) Dad didn't want to waste his precious treasure.
Most of the beer made the trip home, but that memory remains strong in me.
This week my brother has been on an adventure with his wife and children. My niece and nephew are pictured above in Florida. I just wonder what wonderful memories they are building and am glad to see my brother following in our tradition! I only wish I had a photo to share of my brother skim-boarding and the thumbs up he received. :)