Like homemade egg noodles drying on top of the washing machine in the kitchen.
Or my manila card deck tied with a yellow shoestring containing really hard spelling words from Miss Myers class.
Or bottle rockets in the middle of Wichita Street.
Like Fifi the chihuahua and Sneakers the Siamese.
Or Worlds of Fun trips with the girls and Grandpa and Grandma Ferguson.
Or polyester fabric quilted maxi skirts.
Like singing “Free to Be Me” by Francesca Battistelli at the top of our lungs with a car full of girls on the way back to Corn USA.
Or dragging Main with Cindy, thinking we were so cool.
Or wishing I could stay up late and play Risk with my older brothers.
Like waking up late and seeing Grandma Ferguson making pancakes for two little girls with bedhead.
Or remembering that feeling of gut-wrenching pain and pride that brought tears to my eyes and a lump in my throat, watching my girls play volleyball.
Or getting that very first phone call to let me know I was going to be an Ama.
Like side-splitting laughter while playing games with the family.
Like listening to CBS Mystery Theater radio stories that were so scary on a Sunday night dark drive home from church.
Like having a hide-out upstairs at the gas station and hanging out with Meleigh on a Saturday morning.
Or ordering a red basket of curly French-fries and a Coke at Fairmonts.
Like a yellow bike with a flowered banana seat.
Or Snack Haven chicken.
Like the pride I felt for all of my students when we pulled off “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” or “The Power of His Love,” or “The Sound of Music,” or “Fiddler on the Roof,” or “Oklahoma!”
Like the window air conditioner that felt so good in the summertime – I can still hear the sound it made.
Or the black rotary dial phone with the cord that always got twisted and had that label in the middle of the dial with the typed 465-2247 on it.
Or the easy bake oven that made the best little chocolate cakes.
Like being so excited for solo and ensemble night at school and walking down the ramp in the junior high part of the building to show my mom the art that Mrs. Bohanan hung in the hall.
Like Ruth’s whistle and her game she played with the girls: “Guess what song I’m whistling.”
I am grateful for random happy memories that make me smile…