Monday, July 23, 2012

Big Sis Hijinks - Parenting Plights & Delights


Charlene Parton shared some of her favorite parenting stories with me. Her eyes lit up as she relived those long ago moments. A mother of three daughters, Charlene's youngest, Kathleen, was born when Melinda was in high school. A special relationship developed between Melinda and Kathleen, despite the age difference. 

It seems Melinda had a ball teaching her baby sister things. She taught Kathleen that her elbow was called a "knee."

"She mixed up all her body parts," Charlene said with a chuckle. "And she told her that 'zip code' is a bad word!"

Kathleen told her mother over and over, "I want to go coos." Charlene couldn't figure out what she was trying to say. 

Then she learned that Melinda loved to take Kathleen cruising. Melinda would drive her all around town and toot the horn while the baby waved at everyone they knew. Kathleen loved all the attention and thought cruising was fun and exciting. 

When Kathleen was about three years old, she wanted a pair of shoe skates, but she was so petite, they couldn't find any that fit her. So Melinda bought a pair of tennis shoes for her little sis and she fit the tennis shoes into the shoes of the skates.

Kathleen learned to skate on them, as heavy and bulky as they were. "She had a lot of muscles in her legs from those," Charlene said.

When the Olympics were on, Kathleen was impressed with the American ice hockey team. She got the plastic golf set her father had given her and skated around the kitchen, pretending she was on the ice hockey team. 

"Melinda was quite a character," Charlene said. "Kathleen got the chicken pox when she was six years old. I came home one time and discovered that Melinda had played dot-to-dot on Kathleen. She drew lines and connected all the chicken pox!"

Did you get along with your siblings? Were you the oldest, middle child, or the baby? How did it affect you?  


Do you have a parenting or grandparenting memory
or another story you'd like to share? 
If you're not a parent, memories from your own childhood count, too. 

Warning: I might feature your story in a future post. 
(Names can be changed to protect the guilty!)

I'd like to thank all those who have shared their stories. 
These posts wouldn't be the same without your input.

If you don't want to leave a comment but would rather contact me by email, 
here's my address: lynkelwoohoo at yahoo dot com.


(A version of this story originally appeared in the Highland Community News in October 1999.)

12 comments:

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My best friend and I used to tell my nephew the most outrageous things to mess with his head. Yeah, we were terrible.

alarnarosegray said...

Haha! It is fun to mess with kids minds sometimes...but in the most loving way possible :) I was the baby of three, and the accident. So I always say I disrupted the balance in the family...which should say something about how we get along ;)

Old Kitty said...

Melinda playing join the dots with Kathleen's chicken pox! LOL!!

I'm the youngest and didn't have a chance hell in a family of four sisters and one brother! Still don't! LOL! Take care
x

Coleen Patrick said...

I'm the oldest--and was quite bossy I have to say. But apparently a nice bossy, because my siblings always seemed to do what I asked! LOL

Nancy Thompson said...

I'm the middle child and only girl. My older brother threw Tonka trucks on my head, and my little brother let me shampoo his hair and make funny shapes with the lather so I could make fun of him.

susielindau.com said...

That is funny! Coos and the chicken pox game. How hilarious!
I am the oldest and when I was 7, I decided my sister and I should put on a play. It all seemed like such a great idea until the whole neighborhood showed up and neither of us remembered their lines.
(We hadn't rehearsed them!)

Christina Farley said...

I got along with my brother and sister and still do today. But we are four years apart each so I think that changes the dynamics some.

LynNerdKelley said...

Alex - I bet your nephew laughs about all that stuff now that he's grown! Those things make for fun memories.

Alarna - I'm glad you came along to disrupt the family balance because you're such an awesome person and I'm so glad I met you online!

Old Kitty - I thought the dot-to-dot with the chicken pox was pretty hilarious, too! So you're the baby and bore the brunt of all your siblings mischief? No wonder you have such a great sense of humor and such a wonderful personality! It built character! LOL!

Nancy - Tonka trucks on your head? Ouch! Oh man! The shampoo lather and making funny shapes with your little brother's hair is sooooo cute!

Susie - Your memories of putting on the play for the whole neighborhood and not remembering your lines is a hoot! I used to have dreams that I'm on a stage in a play but don't know my lines. No fun!

Christina - I've heard lots of stories about older siblings who were pretty bad, regardless of the age difference, so I think you got lucky with your brother. Sure makes life pleasant, doesn't it? :)

TeresaR said...

What a riot!! As the mom, it would have driven me insane though. ;)

My sis and I (we have no other siblings) are best of friends and always had been. It's partly why even though I wanted to stop after one kid, we decided to go for a second one. My boys are also best of friends.

cleemckenzie said...

I loved the dot to dot! Only a kid would think of something so creative.

Arlee Bird said...

Parenting is one of the greatest and most rewarding adventures a person can have. I had a hand in raising 5 kids and those were some of the best times in my life.

As the oldest in a family of 5 kids that probably helped my child-rearing skills a great deal.

There is a wealth of story telling that come from all of those years.

Lee
Wrote By Rote

nutschell said...

i think messing with kids minds is one of the rituals of adulthood:)
Nutschell
www.thewritingnut.com