Happy 11th Birthday to my youngest daughter, Nora.
Drinking a smoothie at our monthly NaNo write-in.
This amazing picture of summer fun in a fire hydrant popped up on my feed. I knew instantly that it had to be Chicago. I grew up in the Back of the Yards on the south side of the city, and open hydrants were as common as sunburns and ice cream trucks. I have memories of using the bathroom in the basement apartment of our two-flat because there was no water pressure up on the second floor where we lived. That’s what happens when just about every hydrant is open in a two mile radius. But more than that, I have so many memories of playing in the water–the whole street, even the kids that hated each other, having fun together. Good times.
I’m sure there are pictures somewhere of me and my brother and our friends in the hydrant on the corner of 50th and Laflin, but they’d be at my dad’s house. What I do have are some pictures of my kids in 2008 when the fire department opened the hydrant on the corner during our annual block party. The kids had so much fun, and I was taken right back to my childhood, as I bet many of the parents were because that’s how the South Side rolls in the summer.
The bleached-blond in the “Go Army” shirt is my oldest son (then 6 1/2). The cutie in glasses and the striped shirt is my middle daughter (then 5 1/2). And the adorable smiling face in pigtails is my youngest daughter (then 2). The rest are old neighbors and friends from the 5800 block of Tripp Ave on the southwest side.
We’ve since moved almost 2000 miles away to the Pacific Northwest where kids don’t know the joy of running barefoot without a care through the flooded streets. Or, you know, not being able to flush your toilet because there’s no water pressure.
My oldest daughter, Meagan, shared this picture on Facebook of her and three of her siblings in 2010 with this comment:
currently my favorite picture of all time. i wish jack was old enough at the time to get in on this, its just so darn cute. me and my lifelong friends. so thankful that i get to live and grow with my best friends
August 2010–we had just moved to this house a week before after a five-day, cross-country trek. In the back: Brenna (7 1/2) and Meagan (10). In the front: Owen (8 1/2) and Nora (4). Jack was a month old.
And here’s the most recent pic I have of all five of them together at Owen’s 8th grade graduation in June.
From left to right: Nora (1o), Owen (14), Jack (almost 6), Meagan (almost 16) and Brenna (13).
Here’s what else Meagan had to say about her siblings:
ive been around these kiddos forever. no matter who walks in n out of my life, these fuckers are the ones who will always stick. i dont even want to think of us all starting our own lives and separating. its scary. ive lived with them my whole life, i hate to think one day i might have a hard time getting ahold of them because we let distance or time get in the way
This from a girl that has always said she hates being at home because there are too many people in the house and she can’t stand any of us. I guess she’s getting wise in her “old” age.
I look at the second picture and can hardly believe these are my kids. Three teenagers–two of them in high school in the fall. Am I old enough to have a sixteen-year-old? When I think about them, I still picture those little kids in the first picture.
Or like this:
Brenna (15 months), Meagan (3 1/2) and Owen (2). So little.
I got a bit of a bug up my butt earlier this week. For some reason, I just had to scrapbook something. I haven’t made a scrapbook page since 2010, but my brain insisted that this week I just must. I had forgotten how much fun it could be. Of course, it took away from my school work and the nine page paper I have to write.
I decided to do something small instead of a full 12 x 12 page. So I started with a 6 x 4 space and decorated it based on a scrapbook page I found at designerdigitals.com. At first I just did Nora’s, but I loved it so much I decided to do all the kids dressed in their Halloween costumes last year. The four mini-pages match with the same layout (the boys flipped horizontally), but in different colors that matched their costumes. I also made a lead page with all of them together. The plan is to take pictures from past Halloweens and make pages with them then print them and put them into one of those small photo albums.
Meagan as a nerd.
Owen as a zombie
Brenna as a zombie
Nora as a hippie (all clothes the girls own, I love that top)
Jack as Tigger (wearing the same costume the other 4 kids wore their first time out trick or treating)
The kids: Owen (10), Jack (15 months), Brenna (almost 9–next week) and Nora (5 1/2). Meagan took off with her friends before I could get one of all 5 kids.
I’m going through my pictures and just realized I have none of them from last Halloween on this computer. So I checked my external hard drive and they aren’t on there either. Which means they are only saved to my other computer. Which has no graphics card in it so I can’t turn it on and find them.
I guess I never transferred them to the external so now I don’t have them on this computer. I was missing Easter 2011 pictures, too. I thought I just didn’t take any (Easter isn’t that big of a deal in our house) but now they might just be on the other computer that I can’t get into. Ugh.
I was sure I had EVERYTHING backed up. A couple years ago I had to do a complete system wipe and thought I backed everything up only to find out I missed the folder with Owen’s kindergarten graduation pictures in it. So now all I have of that day are 4 edited photos I uploaded to a website (and they aren’t high-res in the least). I lost all the pictures of him with his friends (kids he’ll never see again).
Now this. All I have on this computer from last Halloween are the photos I edited and saved to put online so they are small files, low-res.