Wednesday, July 20, 2011

My Kind of Town

Last week while we were in Chicago, Hadley and Harper found two of my favorite spots in my parents' home.

A vent and a window might seem surprising favorites, but here they are all the same.  That vent sits in what was my brother's room, and another one is on the other side where I would whisper to him from my room.  This was usually during time - outs when my mom sent us to our respective corners and it was through those vents we'd continue the fight.  Well, I would continue to harass Geoff while he simmered.  I loved lying on my stomach talking through what I viewed as a secret passage. Even in a time - out I loved being in my home and exploring. 

One night last week I was shuffling through some of my stuff in a bag that was next to that vent after I'd put the girls to bed.  Hadley strolled in the room, but instead of looking at me, she was looking at the vent. 

"What's up?" I asked her in a "you better have a good reason to be out of bed" voice.  It's very menacing.

"I'm a...."  she only half acknowledged me but continued to look at the vent.


"Well, I'm.....just wondering how you're doing."

"I'm doing fine, Hadley, go back to bed."

Hadley took one more look at the vent then walked back into my old bedroom to go to sleep.  I went back to shuffling through my bag but because I was right by the vent, I heard Hadley's feet stop on the other side.  I realized she had discovered that she could hear me through it.

Harper, on the other hand, discovered one of my bedroom windows.  Every night, when she was supposed to be sleeping, I found her kneeling on her bed, lookng out of that window.  When I walked in to tell her to go to sleep, she'd say, "It's getting wate (late), Momma."  I agreed with her and glanced out the window to notice that Harper was watching the sky turn darker shades of blue.  I wondered if she was listening to the el shoot past as well, and if it lulled her to sleep like it had me.

If you were to ask Hadley and Harper what their favorite part of the trip was, or where their favorite spot in my parents' house is, I am sure they would not mention the vent and the window.  I have a feeling they'd mention with shouts that they loved going to see the dinosaurs,

or visiting the aquarium,

and the zoo.

I liked all those trips as well.  However, watching my girls discover and enjoy something that I enjoyed from my childhood was my favorite part. 

We can show them the Chicago skyline, walk over the bridges over the Eisenhower and tell them not to be afraid of the rickety whoosh of the trains.  We can show them museums, take them swimming and out for ice-cream.  All great things.  But I think what's most important is that we provide our kids with a safe place to explore.  It's nice when we share a common joy in finding a treasure in an otherwise everyday item.



Becky Jane said...

What fond memories to have been able to share with your kids! Even if they aren't aware of it yet, how fun it will be when they know and can relate, because they've experienced them too!

Visiting from voiceBoks
Thanks, Becky Jane

Mommy LaDy Club said...

How special to share with your kids and have that bond remembering together. Great to find you through voiceboks,

Mandi said...

I love this post!!! My brother and I used to talk to each other through a vent when we were little, too. This brought back such awesome memories for me. My parents no longer live in that house, but I'm tempted to go knock on the new owner's door and ask them to speak to me through the vent. Very cozy post. :)

I'm stopping by from voiceBoks, and now happily following your blog! I would love it if you would follow back on mine. Stop on by and say hi!


Jenny said...

Love the vent sister and I used to tap on walls, like morse code. Childhood memories are so precious, glad your girls got to see and do some of yours.

Meredith said...

Isn't it wonderful watching your children discover what you loved?

Following from VoiceBoks.


Kathy said...

I love the story of the window vents and how that was your favorite place growing up. It's funny what little things mean the most to us growing up!! I think it is so great that you could show your children a piece of your history! Thanks for a great post!! I love your site and can't wait to read more!! I'm a very happy new follower!!

Visiting from VoiceBoks!

Dangzter Online said...

You and your hubby are doing a great parenting job! Sure all kids love to go to the zoo! I always say my kids love the animals too!

Visiting from voiceBoks:

The Gypsy Mom said...

Beautiful! I'm reminiscing about my childhood and what goodies my kids might find while exploring my childhood home as I'm reading your post. Looks like they had a great trip and mommy had a great trip down memory lane! I'm a new follower from VB.....looking forward to future posts!

Linette said...

Sounds like a wonderful trip! It's a wonderful thing when you can share your own childhood memories with your children, then they become a part of their childhood memories too!

Stopping by to say hey from Voiceboks:-)

alissa4illustration said...

I love the secret passageway! I used to play music on the vent; rubbing my small finger or a toy back and forth. Then my sister and I that shared a room would huddle by the vent in the cold winter to get dressed by it. "It spit out warm air" we would say.

Becky said...

I can so relate to this post. When my mom sold our childhood home, I photographed every nook and cranny and made it into a scrapbook for her: doorknobs and switchplates and light fixtures. It's the tiny little memories that make a home, and you made me pretty nostalgic reading that.

I'm glad you could share that joy with your kids :)