***Antiques Iowa is having a 4th of July Weekend SALE & all photos featured in the blog post are mall merchandise! ***
My favorite summer vacations – well I didn’t have any real ones, like when as a family you traveled to the Black Hills etc., saw stuff & stayed in a motel or cabin. My Dad milked cows until I was 13; we didn’t take “vacations”. He also had hogs & cattle that needed our care daily!
Summer vacation aka summer time also started when you were done with your chores. My vacations were what my two brothers & I could imagine to occupy our time outside the house & not get hurt or in trouble. We escaped outside…we didn’t have air conditioning in our house. It was cooler to play in the creek or under the trees. I know that we climbed inside of places that we weren’t suppose to go…but no one was there to watch us. We walked down the gravel road…that was when there were county road graders & the rural roads were kept very well. The road grader driver carried gum in his pocket & gave rides.
There were no cell phones & everywhere was long distance so there was no calling school friends when you lived in the country like I did. My brothers & I rode our bikes to the neighbors & we played with whoever was there…whatever age…boy or girl.
When we had to stay on our farm, being the only girl, some times my brothers would play with me & sometimes they wouldn’t. The one thing I vowed was to never have just 3 kids…an even number so everyone got to play. At ten I didn’t realize my spouse got to have an opinion on that….so I have 3 kids & history repeats itself!
Chores: walking beans, milking cows, feeding our animals, finishing 4-H projects, leading animals back & forth across the farm yard, riding in unending circles to perfect a bumpy trot or slow down a gallop. Painting, decopaging, sewing, baking…giving programs on “How to do this or that.” Our summer vacations were daytrips to the county fairs, Boone & Story, & to the Iowa State Fair.
It is interesting to me all the things we didn’t have & didn’t miss. I thought about my summer vacation break one night as I was playing with my grandson. This week Iowa had lots of severe wind & we lost a large pine tree in our front yard. My little 3-yr-old grandson was over on Tuesday & we looked into the hole that the root ball had left (the tree was laying on the ground). And he decided to throw dirt clods & sticks & rocks…whatever he could find into the hole. Then he would shout, “Bullseye!” & we would laugh & find another clod.
I’m teaching him to wade in the “crick” & to find stuff like worms, ants, spiders & to watch for bunnies (of which we have many). We even go on a bear hunt occasionally…through our pine forest (hedge) & over the hill (septic berm) & through the marsh (under the trampoline).
When he gets to stay up late, we’ll catch fireflies & maybe sleep in a tent in the yard! All the things that an Iowa farm-kid summer is meant to be. And yes, we will go to the county fair.