Favorite Childhood Toys

The return of the 30 Day Blog Challenge:  :)   I’ll take all year to finish at this rate!  I’m up to Day 6 & 7.   Six is your zodiac sign and if you think it fits you.  Since I don’t “do” zodiac signs, don’t pay attention to them and think they are full of baloney, I am skipping number six and moving on to number seven which is discussing your favorite childhood toys.

Favorite Childhood Toys

Hard to believe that once upon a time there was no internet, no computers, no smart phones, no gadgets with computer chips in them.  Television became popular in the 1950′s, but we didn’t have one.  We had no phone, either.  We did have a radio and a record player, but that was it.

So, what did kids do?  Coming from a family of only girls, I’m sure that what we did was not the same as a family with boys.  No, I’m not being sexist.  Back then boys and girls rarely played the same way.  We would come together on the play ground and play some games together, but I digress.

Paper Dolls:  Since I was several years younger than my sisters, I mostly played by myself.  One of my favorite “toys” was my collection of paper dolls.  Paper dolls were printed on stiff cardboard.   There were usually from two to four dolls in a package. The dolls were mostly in their underwear.  To clothe them, inside the cardboard booklet were sheets of paper with various types of clothing shaped to fit the doll, printed on one side of the paper.

The clothes had paper tabs on them.  You cut out the clothes and bent the tabs to fit on the dolls shoulders and arms. They had many changes of clothing.  Paper dolls were very common and could be bought in every “Five and Dime “store. There were men and boy dolls as well as girl and women dolls.  With paper dolls, one could be a movie star or a ballerina or an ordinary person.  I had several dolls, but I didn’t play with them as much as the paper dolls.  I slept with dolls for many years, like kids today do with their stuffed toys.  I remember Bubbles and Honey, my two favorite dolls.

Books: I read.  As soon as I started first grade (There was no kindergarten back then.), I grabbed at reading and never stopped.  We took weekly trips to the local library and stocked up with books.  I started with picture books and went on to The Bobbsey Twins, The Happy Hollisters, Nancy Drew, and The Hardy Boys.  Then I branched out to more variety.

Weeds:  There was a tall weed that grew profusely where I grew up.  I think it was called ironweed.  When this weed was pulled out of the ground, many knobby roots came with it.  One of my sisters and I played with these weeds.  We stripped most of the leaves off, leaving a short bunch on the end. We turned the weed upside down and used the roots as reins.  Presto!  We had a stable of beautiful horses to ride around the yard.

Rocks: Rocks were plentiful where I grew up.  One day a lady visitor showed us how she and her sister used to use rocks to make a playhouse.  We were delighted and made our own house.  Taking lots of rocks, we laid the rocks out in a floorplan, leaving spaces for doors and hallways, designating rooms for bedrooms, living room and kitchen.  We dragged in old dishes and toys and placed them around the “rooms”.

Jacks:  I was really good at playing jacks by the time I was 10.  The best jacks were made of heavy metal.  The cheaper, light weight ones did not throw well.  The aim of the game started easy and as you passed each level, games became progressively more difficult.  You bounced a small ball that came with the jacks.  As the ball went into the air, you grabbed a jack, starting with just one, then caught the ball before it came back down.  Then you grabbed two jacks, etc.

Imagination:  With my imagination, I was many things.  I was a preacher, a dancer, a famous star, a owner of a stable of horses, a world traveler, a wealthy buyer, a mother, a doctor, a cook, an elegant lady.   Playing modern computer games is fun, but nothing beats using one’s own imagination for extended play.

What were some of your favorite childhood toys?

P.S.  My light romance is almost ready to be re-published as an e-book.   I’m excited that it will be back in circulation.

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4 Comments

Filed under Family, The Art of Living

4 responses to “Favorite Childhood Toys

  1. Naomi

    I enjoyed reading about your favorite child-hood toys. I had many of the same favorites…
    I would save my pennies & buy paper dolls, and I still love them. I actually still have an uncut set of Shirley Temple paper dolls. ♥ I remember my sister & I made many of our own…she was really great at it. We’d trace Betty & Veronica from the Archie comics & make endless fashions!
    We had bicycles, but they were too big for us to ride. We’d place them side by side in the yard, lay out a blanket behind them, & place our dolls & other necessities on the blanket. We pretended that we were traveling, living on the road, pulling our possessions & “children” behind us!
    I loved playing jacks & my teddy bear is still with me, and when I get him out of the cedar chest, he still rates a hug! ☺

  2. Sue

    Love the bike-travel story! Now that’s what I mean by using our imaginations.

  3. twintrons

    Ha-ha, if you could only see my face right now. (Grinning from ear to ear.) My wife and I have talked about this before because I don’t like carrying my cell phone. Argh, I’m an old soul. What about playing hide-n-go seek, freeze tag, or tether ball? Great post!

    • Sue

      Oh, yes! Hide-n-go seek, especially at dusk in summertime when the fireflys come out–or lightening bugs, as we used to call them. Thanks for the comment.

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