I’m participating in a project called Mommy’s Piggy Tales where I’ll be writing stories about my childhood once a week for 15 weeks, starting with birth and ending with graduation in the hopes that my children, and possibly my children’s children, will one day appreciate it.
Third grade must have been a fairly uneventful time for me because I remember very little that’s specific to that year. Writing about your childhood is difficult when you can’t remember a lot of it!
My class was actually a 3/4 split, so I was in class with my best friends older brother. My favorite thing about that year was a book the class put together. We all wrote (and illustrated) stories and poems and combined them into a little booklet. We voted on the name of the book and came up with “Our Little Book from Class 3/4”. I believe we even sold the books to family and friends, though I don’t remember what we would have used the money for.
I remember someone (perhaps it was me?) wrote a story about a haunted house. I can still see the little drawings of bats and a crooked house. I wish I could get my hands on that book now (I believe it’s hiding in one of my mom’s storage lockers) – I love getting glimpses of my thought processes when I was a kid.
When I wasn’t in school, my time was spent running (or riding) around the neighborhood with my friends. I was a latch key kid, so when I came home from school, I’d do my homework, have a snack, and run out to play! Every once in a while, I’d forget my house key and be locked out of the house. One day when this had happened, my friends and I decided to try to get in a window. Unfortunately, all of the windows were locked…except for one: the cat window.
Our house had a room in the corner of the basement that was purely for storage. This room had a window up high in the wall that led out to our back deck. It was an extremely small window with an opening that’s probably no more than 12” square. My mom put a tall cat tree under that window and left it open so the cats could come and go. Hence the name.
Anyway, one day when I was locked out, my friends and I decided to use the cat window to get me into the house. We went around to the deck and I pushed my feet through trying to find the cat tree. I wasn’t quite tall enough, so my friends grabbed my hands and held onto me as I lowered even further into the room. Eventually, I did find the cat tree with my feet and was able to jump down, then run upstairs to unlock the front door.
That was the first of many trips through the cat window over the next several years. Eventually, we had to stop (and I had to remember my keys) when I almost got stock at the shoulders (not a good feeling!), but whenever I think about that, I’m always amazed at how brave (and stupid) kids can be.