It was when I was searching and sorting through my old photos yesterday for a particular photograph that time seemed to stand still. What a wonderful break from the disasters unfolding around the country. I found myself deep in “remember whens” — such nostalgia. During my walk down memory lane, the biggest draw on my heartstrings were pictures that brought back memories of my girls when we were a young family.
I used to devise games to keep the girls busy and happy — things that would be good for me, too. A few years ago, when we were in Greece and the girls were sure they didn’t want to go to one more museum, we broke up into teams (the girls vs. my husband and I) and we fanned out across the museum to sketch our favorite exhibits. The competition centered around whether or not the other team could accurately find the exhibit you’d sketched, based on your sketch alone. Given that none of us are artists, we laughed and giggled our way through the museum. Parenting success!
So it was a treat when I wandered over to these pictures from 2011. I’d completely forgotten about the Downtown Photography Challenge. Summer days were growing long and the natives were getting restless, as they say. Each daughter had a camera, so I challenged them to a Photography Contest. We would fan out on Main Street and shoot interesting things. I think I may have thrown in ice cream from our Drive-Through Dairy as an added incentive. Then, we’d come home and wait for Dad.
Dad would judge all photos. I came up with categories and prizes. The prizes were long-forgotten toys and art supplies, stuffed away in drawers and closets for who-knows-how-long. I probably should have let my husband know about the contest. The girls ambushed him the moment he walked through the door, begging him to pick THEIR photographs. He’s a good sport, though, and really played up the judging portion, assigning numbers to each entry, anguishing over how to choose (all the pictures were so brilliant!). Each girl was awarded prizes for their photography and another summer day went down in the book of happy memories.
I wish I had the pictures the girls had taken, but my pictures of that day reminded me of the treasures we have in our own backyards. For someone who’s been longing for adventure, it was a great thing to remember.