Her first slumber party
We were almost 9 years old, and we knew all the words to several TV theme songs and Billboard’s top hits.
Using the posts of my friend Morgan’s canopy bed, we pretended to sing into microphones as we belted the lyrics to “Kokomo” by The Beach Boys.
I’m not sure Morgan, Nicole and I were ever considered trained vocalists, but nobody seemed to mind that we spent many Friday nights singing songs from “Cocktail” or the New Kids on the Block anthology.
The only thing that really encouraged us to give our voices a rest was the awesome, two-hour, TGIF lineup on ABC, which included “Perfect Strangers,” “Full House,” “Mr. Belvedere,” and “Just the Ten of Us.”
(No TV show today provides anything remotely similar to the perfection that was the dance of joy with Balki Bartokomous.)
And if our sleepovers happened on Saturday evenings, it wasn’t unusual to find us watching “The Golden Girls.”
But we didn’t just watch TV. With the help of the fortune-telling game MASH (mansion, apartment, shack, house), we also determined our futures. I was supposed to have four kids and a mansion, so perhaps MASH is wrong sometimes. (Hey, it’s no Magic 8 Ball.)
As an eternal optimist, I tend to believe what lies ahead is far better than what we’ve left behind. However, as my daughter plans her first slumber party, I’m reminded of one of the joys of childhood.
Life was simple in that safe, five-block town. A fire department bingo was the biggest event of the week–especially when the kitchen was managed by a ladies’ auxiliary that cooked like every Tuesday bingo was a Saturday wedding. (If a hunky woman hasn’t cooked for you, you haven’t lived.)
The girls were too young to be petty. The boys were too young to be rude. We all played together. We rode bikes. We went to the park. We sipped Slush Puppies. We played. We had childhoods. We had sleepovers.
There seems to be more expectations of kids today. Myriad activities tie up schedules. There’s always somewhere to go or something to do. When their to-lists stretch as long as ours, it’s as though we’re raising little adults instead of little kids.
So I was delighted when Cienna said she wanted to have a slumber party for her ninth birthday.
And if she and her friends sing pop songs as loud as they can, I won’t mind at all.