Yep! This is the 1970’s. I am in the photo, the little one in the blue dress. My Aunt Sharon is getting married, the tallest one in the blue is Aunt Tink, and Aunt Mary is the lady that is the second to the end. So, what is so special about them? Well, just sit back and allow me to tell you.
We were lucky that we lived pretty close to Aunt Mary, so we saw her at least once a week. Many Sunday dinners were eaten at the kids table. We spent many weekends with Aunt Mary, my sister and cousin would all sleep on the fold out couch. Sometimes we would break the rules and watch “Mission Impossible” I hated that show, but those were the days that we only had 4 channels. We would laugh so hard at the hair styles of the actors. Sometimes Aunt Mary would have to get up and tell us to stop laughing so hard. She would remind us that Uncle E would have to get up for work really early. He did get up early. I don’t know about my cousin or sister, but I would peek in the morning as Aunt Mary would lovingly make breakfast and coffee. She would talk softly to Uncle E, thinking we were asleep. She would pack his lunch, and send him to work with a peck on the cheek. I would just sigh. Longing to have a sweet relationship when I got old enough to get married.
We did some apple picking with Aunt Mary too. We were in the back of a pick up truck (when it was still legal) we stopped on the road side and picked green apples. Oh, they were so good. The sweet tender taste would just explode in your mouth. I could not get enough, and quickly learned why eating a crap load of green apples is not good. No apples I have had since that time have ever measured up to those.
To this day a sun symbol still reminds me of Aunt Mary, she used to have one of those giant sunburst clocks from the early 70’s. She is still super crafty, and can make just about anything.
Aunt Tink, I think my other cousins refer to her as Aunt Tink too. Why Tink? Okay, I am not 100% sure of the validity of this story or if I made it up over the years…When she was a baby she was so adorable that my grandfather referred to her as “Tinkerbell”, it was then shortened to Tink by her brothers and sisters. Sounds good to me.
We would get to spend two weeks of our summer with Aunt Tink. She lived in West Virginia, and out in the country. We had to use our imaginations while staying in the country. There was still no cable in those days…We caught frogs, made things from the clay soil, helped hang clothes out on the clothes line, went swimming, horseback riding, and hiking.
One time we went hiking in the woods, it was my sister, and two other cousins. We happened to see a baby skunk. We took a stick and poked at the skunk, and he was alive. We ran off, and were pretty proud of ourselves for making sure that the skunk was alive. Aunt Tink told us that we were lucky that the skunk did not spray us. She said we would have had to stay in the garage in a tub of tomato juice. Eeek! The thought of being in tomato juice that I could not drink was too much for me. I did not want to go around another skunk again.
Aunt Tink was super inventive too. She took a huge sheet of plastic and put it on her hillside. We had more fun sliding down that plastic. Slip and Slide was freaking lame!!! We had a whole hillside to enjoy. My sister would never go down the hill. The rest of us ran and dove on the plastic. Damn, that was fun.
Then there is Aunt Sharon. Every time I see a fast car I think of her. She was the dare devil! She drove fast, and did things that other Aunts would not dare do. We went to see the fireworks for the fourth of July one year, and it was hot an miserable. All of us kids, there were 5 or 6 of us in a Jeep. We were starving. We went to McDonalds, and drive throughs were not very advanced back then. We waited and waited for the people to get our order correct. They could not get our order correct, and Aunt Tink and Aunt Sharon were trying to hand the food out to us, but they gave us fish fillet. There was more whining, and Aunt Sharon lost it. She went into the food establishment and cussed those people out in the there. We were not suppose to be listening to all the words Aunt Sharon was saying when she was telling Aunt Tink what happened. Aunt Sharon then said she was going to get some resolve. She did, and it was super funny. We were not allowed to talk about it again. Sometimes passing a McDonalds brings a chuckle up into my chest about the whole ordeal.
She also had the coolest house with buttons. Everyone else had regular lights, but she had buttons all over her house. She moved to Tennessee, and married a man she loves very much. Now, she is probably out speeding in her boat, so watch out if you live in Tennessee.
My Aunts have helped formed me into the person I am today. The experiences I had with them when I was in my most formative years are treasured moments of my life that no one can ever take away from me. I have only shared a few of the stories that have made such an impact on me. My kids love hearing the stories, and there are those I can share now, then there are some that will have to wait until they are much older. When the kids are too old to do some of the things I did when I was young.