Childhood · Nostalgia

Remember Reminder #9: Have Fun

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#rememberreminder: Have Fun

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Remember playing silly games with your friends? Freeze-tag, Red-Rover, Marco Polo, Simon Says, Don’t step on the cracks… One silly activity making a recent comeback on the internet is “the floor is lava.” Yeah, being silly is fun…

And “the floor is lava” reminded us of this fun video at :55 Continue reading “Remember Reminder #9: Have Fun”

Childhood · culture · Nostalgia

National Crayon Day: Color Us Happy!

crayons-nostalgia-diaries“Smelling a crayon takes you right back to childhood, he said. When I need to go back in time, I put it under my nose and take another hit.”
– Randy Pausch

Did you know that today is National Crayon Day? Here at the Nostalgia Diaries, we love fun little holidays like this that evoke memories of our childhood. Who doesn’t remember the smell of a crayon — which is almost better than the crayon itself? Or trying to decide just which color was your favorite? Or the happiness and wonder that a new box of crayons held? Continue reading “National Crayon Day: Color Us Happy!”

Nostalgia · Stories

Week 10: Hope is Here | Everyday Nostalgia

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As a child, I was never much of a collector. There were a few things like my Strawberry Shortcake figurines (that still smell 30 years later — talk about nostalgia) and a handful of My Little Ponies, but nothing of that much importance, and nothing like the collections my daughter has. They range from tiny plastic jewels that have most likely fallen off hair clips or fancy greeting cards, to a group of rocks or a mismatched selection of trinkets that seemingly have nothing to do with one another. (But take Zoey’s word for it: they do.) An empty box almost elicits more joy from her than one boasting presents, because to her, its emptiness just begs to be filled with a world of exciting, yet-to-be-found treasures.  

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One of Zoey’s mismatched collections

When I ask if maybe we need to get rid of some of these things, she looks at me as if I’ve lost my mind. To her, all of those things mean something. And to be honest, I get it.

Because there is one thing that I collect that is of great importance to me. Collected throughout my teen years and college and even into today, they aren’t even things–they are words. For as long as I can remember, I have been a collector of quotes.

A simple journal was always the perfect gift for me, because its pages could hold hundreds of inspirational words. I have a collection of them, all different shapes and sizes, all of them documenting, in essence, the things I have found important in my life. And if someone ever told me I had to get rid of one of these, I, like Zoey, would have looked at them like they had two heads. No way. No how. Continue reading “Week 10: Hope is Here | Everyday Nostalgia”

family · Nostalgia · Recipes · Stories

Week 2: In With the Old | Everyday Nostalgia

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Last Spring was a bit of a blur for me, but today, if I close my eyes and think about that time, I am transported back to a cold April day. It was a day the promise of many things—including snow—hung delicately in the air. And it was the promise of a beginning that manifested itself in the shape of a key—a key that would open the door to a hopeful, happy future.

I remember the sound as the key slid into the lock and my footsteps’ hollow echo as I walked across the floor.  I remember the way the space felt and smelled, so fresh and new. I remember wandering around as if in a trance, pulling open the blinds and seeing a hint of dust dance in the flood of sunlight and—although I was on a tight schedule and needed to get back to work—sitting down on the floor and taking in the moment.

I pressed the key firmly into my palm now and it moved ever so slightly against the pulse it had found—a pulse now slower, calmer, than it had been in months and possibly years.

And as I sat there in the emptiness of my new place, so full of promise and potential, I remember thinking, “Now what?” Continue reading “Week 2: In With the Old | Everyday Nostalgia”

family · Nostalgia · traditions

Week 1: New Beginnings | Everyday Nostalgia

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The second weekend of November felt like an Indian summer here in Colorado. It was 68 degrees outside, but there I was, sitting inside, decorating for Christmas.

I know, I know. That’s waaaaay too early. But before you start thinking I’m crazy, let me explain.

The past year brought a whirlwind of change, and the end of 2016 found me in uncharted territory. I was in a new place—physically, personally, and emotionally. I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to feel, but what I did know is that I felt a little lost.

Ultimately, I think I was craving a connection to my past, to myself, to the person I used to be.

So what better way to remember those things than to put Christmas up early? I had boxes of Christmas decorations filled to the brim with my childhood ornaments, full of wonderful, warm, nostalgic memories. And since Christmas is my favorite holiday, I thought this was a good idea.

begin-nostalgia-diariesAlthough I was excited to decorate, as I opened the boxes, I began to worry that this activity might leave me feeling, well, a bit…sad. Christmases were going to be different now. This Christmas my daughter Zoey wouldn’t be there to wake up in the wee hours on Christmas morning. I wouldn’t hear the pitter-patter of footsteps down the hall as she raced to the tree and her stocking, excited to see what Santa had brought. She’d be there in the afternoon of course, but I knew it just wouldn’t be the same. Divorce changes things, and I’d be lying if I said there weren’t a few tears shed on my part. No matter the circumstances, change like that is hard. Lamenting the loss of the familiar, the loss of traditions, is a natural reaction, right?

But anyone who knows me well enough knows that this little emotional pity party didn’t last long. Because what good does feeling sorry for yourself do?  We must Keep Calm and Carry On. We have to stay hopeful. We have to remember that things get easier. They get better. They turn into to new things. And new things? Well, they’re filled with so much wonderful hope and promise.

So I reached in a box and pulled out an ornament. Because when you don’t know where to start, you just have to begin.

Continue reading “Week 1: New Beginnings | Everyday Nostalgia”