Feeling nostalgic about your own childhood? I have these strange moments every time I pack the kids’ toys away or prop up Char, the sorry looking stuffed white polar bear I’ve had since 1986 and who now sits on my daughter’s bed. It seems that I’m not alone in enjoying the chance to reminisce a little – Esther, a talented intern here at Really Kid Friendly, talks about her favourite childhood memories:
When I moved house in October 2009, a wave of nostalgia hit me. As I packed up and got rid of things I was never going to use again, I came across some childhood stuff. This, of course, made me go back about fourteen years into my past, when Lego, Barbie and the Goosebumps stories were essential children’s icons.
The 90s was the best time to grow up – not just because it was the decade of my childhood – but because the best things were around then: the toys, sweets, clothes, music, and the friends I shared all this with. At primary school, my best friends were Michelle, Rachel and Kirsty and as we all roughly lived within the same area, it didn’t take our parents long to drop us off at someone’s house. With them, I enjoyed playing with our toys, munching on finger food whilst watching Disney movies, dressing up and going to parties and sleepovers. We were your classic girly girls.
My parents kept my siblings and me on a healthy diet so I was obviously excited when Kirsty’s parents took us to McDonald’s, and we didn’t own all the Disney movies either, so it was a treat to watch Beauty and the Beast or The Little Mermaid at Rachel’s house. Michelle mostly came to my house to play but on the occasion I was at hers, I loved lounging on her cushiony, pink covered bedspreads.
I know that many of the toys available in the 90s were invented way before then but my friends and I will always remember them the way they were when we were kids. Whenever we got together, the toys we played with included Barbies, Polly Pockets, dollhouses, teddies and stuffed toys such as rabbits and Disney related characters. I was given an old doll of my mum’s named Samantha and she scared everybody off except Rachel and I; we still pushed her around in her pram. Everyone else didn’t like Samantha’s insanely bright blue eyes, gaping mouth and the fact that she could walk with assistance, which they thought was the creepiest thing of all.
The one thing that made us really click as a group was that we took turns in suggesting games because we all had our own idea of fun. Kirsty liked to tease and pull pranks, I enjoyed drama and making up stories, Rachel liked to get us to act out scenes from her favourite TV shows, and Michelle was into physical games like It, hide and seek, and what’s the time Mr Wolf?. It was a win win situation, and it seemed we enjoyed anything we could do together.
The last time I saw these girls together in a room was at a school reunion in 2003 and we were not so little then. Perhaps by the next reunion, we might have our own children and will be indulging once more in pink fluffy things and our favourite Disney DVDs.
What sort of things did you do with your friends when you were young? Do you think you’ve given your own kids the same opportunities?