Sunday, December 17, 2006

Little boy, shorter hair

Our kids have two personas: the at-home one, and the in-public one. When we're home, they can fight like cats and dogs and prompt us to wonder why we ever decided to become parents. When we're out and about, however, they are, in my totally-biased father's opinion, the best-behaved people on the planet. So much so that friends and strangers alike will stop us and rave about how polite and kind our kids are.

Which answers the why-we-had-them-in-the-first-place question quite nicely, I think. They pick their spots and come through when they need to.

Such as at the hairdresser. Ours has converted her living room into a studio. It overlooks a lovely porch in a quiet neighborhood of the city. Often, her dog will meander in and say hello to the kids. It's the kind of place where I feel comfortable pulling out the camera and capturing some of the festivities. Here, it's Noah's turn. Interestingly enough, he wasn't upset in this image. He was his typical happy self, and had simply scrunched his eyes shut as the scissors worked their usual magic.

It's a moment in his life that I like to remember: not because it was spectacular or massive, but because it was a real experience in his life. I hope he chooses to add stuff like this to the growing list of memories that he's building in that agile and perceptive brain of his.

Your turn: A supposedly minor moment from your childhood. What was it, and how do you remember it today?


kenju said...

I remember dressing up in my mother's old, discarded Priscilla curtains and putting on a show with my girlfriends on the front stoop of our home. I was pretending to be Carmen Miranda, and all I lacked was the banana headdress.

Noah looks cute scrunching his eyes to avoid the hair.

Michele made me do it.

Anonymous said...

oh, Carmi. I don't know what triggered it, but when you asked the question, the moment popped into my mind. I was about 6 or 7 and I had committed, in my mind at least, some unforgiveable crime. I was sure I would get sooooo busted. I was so scared of retribution, in fact, that I went to my room and hid between my wall and my mattress for about an hour. Yes, lying on my side on the box spring with covers over me.

No one came to look. No one was searching for the little criminal. After an hour, I crawled out of my cramped hidey hole, pushed the mattress back and went out to play. Half an hour later I joined the family for dinner. No mention was made of my transgression.

To this day, I can't remember what I did or who I expected to be so mad, but I do remember the hour I spent hiding, terror at being found mingling with the dissapointment that, apparently, whatever it was I did wasn't important enough to make anyone look for me.

Olyal said...

Hi Carmi!
I remember very random stuff from my childhood and it seems to come back in flashes thanks to the power of sensory association.
Your story reminded me of when I used to go to the hair dresser as a kid. The hairdresser was a guy in his late thirties or early forties and I didn't like him much but I used to like going because he always had a box of toys to play with and the mirrors were set up so that if you looked in one you'd see yourself reflected a thousand times because of the reflection from the mirror behind you. I also used to pick up may hair clippings to take home to my dad (who's bald) for him to stick on his head.

Hope you're well!

Anonymous said...

Circus World, 1979
My older sister got to have her face done up like a clown.

I cried because Mom said I was too young. She made me feel better by coloring circles on my cheeks and nose with lipstick. I remember being happy at the time.

Now I look at that picture and all I feel is bitter. No wonder I grew up to be such a clown.

My sister is going to Disney World next month. Panda Bear (4) is going to get a "princess makeover." Baby Bear (1.5) is not. My guess is, Baby Bear will grow up to be a real princess.

Not here from Michele. But I'm putting this comment in "Michele reserve" should I come here via Michele and not have anything to say.

Anonymous said...

My father taught every boy in my neighbourhood how to play sunday afternoon football....they often came knocking on the door to ask if he would come out to play.

He always took me....his learn strategy and skills along with them.

This is the first thought that came to me when I read yours....... funny how it just filtered up....though it seemed minor wrapped up in all the other BIG obviously remained meaningful. Good question.

Anonymous said...

I remember when my mother let me have my first cup of coffee. I was getting ready for my first day as an eighth grader, and I begged and pleaded with my mother to let me have some. She told me that I could, and as I took that first sip, I scrunched up my face and almost spit it out! I had to eat six to eight chocolate chip cookies while I drank my coffee because it was so bitter to me.

Now I can't imagine my life without my coffee. Oh, the irony...sometimes I wish I could go back to that day, and as I go to find the cookies, my mom tells me, "We're all out of cookies, Marina." That would have saved me from ever having tried the blasted stuff.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I know that face. Whenever the snips move across the front, the face of a kid has that lift-off G-force look.

My memory was going to buy clothing with my Grandmother at Sam's, a store in Livingston with the vintage men's clothing store clerk immortalized by Woody Allen's robot salesmen in Sleeper. It profoundly effects how I feel whenever I am shopping for a suit. Those clerks are long gone, it seems, with the closing of Mo Ginsberg's in NYC. I miss those guys. They worked your anatomy like any surgeon, you psyche like the best of shrinks. And you always looked good when they were done.

srp said...

When I was a little girl my parents got me a life size walking doll called "Saucy Walker". Often I kept her sitting in the wing back chair in the living room. My mom was pregnant with my brother and back then grocers did deliver. One evening a young fellow brought the groceries. As he walked through to the kitchen he nodded to the doll and said, "Hello, little girl" and on the way out "Good-bye, little girl." I don't think he ever suspected she was a doll. I was around the corner out of sight and thought this was quite funny. Bless his heart, he was trying so hard to be polite and helpful. Maybe it was his first job or first delivery and he was very nervous. Too funny.

Anonymous said...

I'd say it's a credit to the way you're bringing up your kids that they behave so well in public...well done you!

I remember small things from childhood like cooking with Mum, or watching a particular movie, or a walk, a trip on the bus etc. Small things that when we start talking about them they seem more important than anything else. It's the small things that count!

Anonymous said...

Oh, Carmi....this is precious! Noah is so handsome and that look on his face is priceless. You certainly captured it well.
I have a photo with my dad when I was about 3 years old, sitting on a porch step, eating an ice-cream. He's sitting a step below me and looking over his shoulder at me with a smile on this face that radiates love. That snapshot is invaluable to I know this one for Noah will be someday, because his Dad took it.

Olyal said...

Looks like your post has triggered some pretty powerful memories for people Carmi. Thanks for getting us all reminiscing.
Michele sent me this time.

scrappintwinmom said...

I have lots, but one of my faves is when i decided to run away from home. I was about 5 or 6 at the time, and my mom pissed me off for some reason. She went out, and my dad was home sleeping - he caught me in the closet, digging out my little paisley suitcase. He asked me where i was going, and I answered matter-of-factly, "I'm running away from here". He stifled a laugh and talked me into staying.

utenzi said...

Michele sent me, Carmi.

I was 13 and my family and I were in Florida visiting with some people who had once lived near us. I was bored and reading a book when a young kid came in the room asking for the youngest daughter of these friends. I pointed to the closet where she'd just gone a minute ago--and apparently they'd been playing hide-and-go-seek. For some odd reason I've always felt guilty about giving away her hiding place even though I had no idea it was a game at the time. Odd that a memory like that lingers.

The Mistress of the Dark said...

I remember our vacations to Erie to visit my brother's family when I was small. Everytime we'd get back on I-79 to head towards Pittsburgh I'd cry.

It's funny...when I leave a vacation spot, I still tear up.

Here via Michele's today :)

Anonymous said...

i am the youngest of 6 and my dad's little princess since the rest of them are boys. just before i turned 5 it was back to school time and my dad was taking the boys all down to the barber college for their back to school haircuts. i figure that since i was starting school that year that i should be going too. i didn't realize that it wasn't a beauty salon until i saw the barber whip out his clippers. i sat in his chair on a suitcase and cried silent tears as the barber gave me the same little boys haircut that he gave my next older brother who is 2.5 years older than me. my dad rewarded us with suckers. and then after we took the boys home he took me out for ice cream and explained that with my starting school mornings were going to get hard and my long hair was going to be too hard to care for.

it was ok in the end because my long hair always had looked like a rat's nest anyway.

michele sent me this time!

Foster Dogs said...

Hi Carmi,
You can look online for rescues in your area. Also, this web site:

lists Husky rescues by region, just click on "Canada".

It's hard not to get hooked! Thanks for anything you can do to help dogs in need!

kenju said...

Michele sent me back, Carmi, and I enjoy reading all the other's comments and memories. I think anything that takes us back to a simpler time in our lives is great!

Anonymous said...

I love that picture of little Noah. I have one similar of my lil guy.


Anonymous said...

Almost everything I remember from childhood is a planted memory of things being recited to me by my mom. I only have a handful that weren't and they stayed for the emotional intensity, like perched on my granny's chair edge as she sewed the eye back into my teddy.

Anonymous said...

First of all, Carmi, your comments on my blog always warm my heart so much. Thank you.

Coming to your blog warms my heart, too. This picture is SO touching. He is adorable! And his face looks like that of most any kid who has ever had his hair cut - it's not the most pleasant experience for a kid!

This photo made me think of when I got my ears pierced - I was only 3 years old and it's my clearest, earliest memory. I looked in my own eyes staring back at me from the mirror, and I had one woman on either side of me with a piercing gun. They counted to three and I pursed my lips together in anticipation of the pain, and it wasn't but a little sting, and I felt so grown-up!