When I was a child, we didn’t have the worry that we do now about child abductions. My friend Patty and I would pack lunches and ride our bikes three or four miles out of New Richmond to Burkhardt. We’d visit friends on the way, not coming home until much later in the day.
In general, we spent most of our summers outside – building forts, playing tag and baseball and softball on the boulevard. There were lots of young children in our neighborhood, so we’d take turns sitting on different front stoops to play Monopoly, paper dolls, hopscotch, marbles. In winter, we skated and went sledding until our gloves and mittens were soaking wet.
Hopalong Cassidy was just coming out on TV. Every Saturday evening was family TV time. Sundays were for church and visiting family (particularly our grandparents).
I loved Mom’s family. We would go to the farm and sit on the horses when Grandpa hayed. We spent a lot of time at the farm, sitting in the hay mow. My cousin Paulette lived with our grandparents for a bit, too.
Because it was an old-fashioned farm, it was an experience that not many children of my age experienced. When I was 12 or 13, Mom and Dad built a cabin on Wood Lake. It was a few miles (two to four) from the family farm. Mom’s brother had the cabin next door, and her sister Glenny was two doors down.
We spent a lot of summer weekends at the cabin. Friends and neighbors from New Richmond would come to stay with us throughout the summer. They sold it sometime after I graduated from high school.
When we went out at night, we went to clubs with bands and danced. I remember Mom and Dad going to a dance hall between Roberts and River Falls. It’s now a roller skating rink.
When I was with Jake, we used to ski in Colorado for two weeks every year, generally at the end of February and beginning of March. I loved skiing. We went to both Aspen and Vale. The people and the nightlife were incredible.
We would start at the top of the mountain and ski all the way down. There would generally be four to five men and me. I did mogul skiing too.
When I was with Jeff, I went to a lot of garage sales. I still do. Because of my experience in consignment shops, garage sales, Goodwill and exposure to all the fashion, I was asked to co-chair and run the annual Cross Lutheran Church rummage sale. The really good thing about church sales is the diverse group of attendees.