Without frequently breaking into a Taylor Swift mix, today’s the day I turn the big 2-2. I can’t quite fathom out why each passing birthday year seems to be haunting instead of good fun but I think it’s because I can no longer class myself as a young one. I don’t act as though I inherit any adult qualities but at the ripe age of the rising twenties, I’m expected to behave like a mature, in control individual who provides for herself and frankly, that’s a scary thought. It’s a common, clique statement that celebrating a birthday is nowhere near as exciting as it was back in the childhood days but it’s oh so very true which is why today, instead of daunting over the fact I’m slowly becoming an old woman, I’m sharing my 55 most remembered and favourite childhood memories (as well as eating my body weight in cake and restaurant food because hey, what’s a birthday without an excuse to be fat).
1) Kids TV programmes. Barney, Tots TV, Brum, Pingu, I could go on. I swear I still remember the words and the melody of each theme tune.
2) Hating opening clothes at Christmas. Oh how times have changed.
3) The mid-kid crisis. That awkward age where your baby teeth fell out and wonky, overgrown adult teeth made your mouth appear too big for your face.
4) Priceless fun. Being lifted in the air on your dad’s feet and feeling (literally) on top of the world.
5) Actually being sociable. Spending hours outside playing p-o-l-o, hide and seek, and ball games with that ancient football which had almost disintegrated.
6) The PlayStation one. Crash Bandicoot and Aku Aku, Scooby Doo and that god damn phantom virus level I could never complete.
7) Children’s TV Favourites. Having a variety of the VHS videos with different collections, some even double sided. From Junglies, to The Herbs, Huxley Pig, and Spot The Dog.
8) Days out to the park. Visiting the local play areas and relaxing in the red tube of the slide to hide away from the reality of friction burns on bare knees.
9) Those foldable, fastened art sets. Contents included paint palettes, crayons, pencils and felt tips. I must have owned at least 5. It was guaranteed I’d open one every birthday and still lick the tip of the pen when it ran out.
10) School entertainment. Putting a pencil through a ruler hole at school and spinning it around until it flew off.
11) More school entertainment. Using the maths equipment as fighting equipment; a protractor as knuckle dusters, a triangular ruler as a gun etc etc.
12) Even more school entertainment. That overhead projector with the song lyrics.
13) Reaching Year 6. There was no better feeling that being able to sit on the benches in assembly, not to mention that TV being wheeled into the classroom on a Friday.
14) Toy day at the end of each Primary School term. There was that one main girl who brought in the huge barbie house and you just provided the barbies and Shelly dolls to go with.
15) Building up your collection of teddy bears. And having to sleep with them all at night so none of them get offended.
16) Colouring the spacing inbetween letters with a hole. But making sure all was intact once you were gifted your handwriting pen.
17) Sipping from the cap of a bottle. Mainly done to imitate an adult drinking shots.
18) Polly Pockets. Those extra tiny ones, not the latest version; and the heart shaped homes and balloon rides.
19) The walk home from school. Every single time without fail, I’d run my hands against the metal railings to create an unusual sound.
20) Bouncing your pen off the table. As well as attempting to click down all 4 colours of your giant pen.
21) Drawing a bird as a curved line and thinking it’s an acceptable version of a sky backdrop. Topped with a sun drawn in the corner of every single piece of paper handed to you.
22) Making fists to rub your eyeballs. Resulting in seeing stars.
23) Garden activities. The wendy house, square paddling pool that took hours to fill up, pea shooting, water fights…
24) Playing on your scooter. And smacking your ankle as you pick it up and swing it to a different angle.
25) Being a fortuneteller with this. No other words needed.
26) Babyface, one of Sid’s Toys from Toy Story. That one eyed creepy robot with a dolls head used to scare me to death.
27) Winding the car window down manually. You needed all the strength in the world to get some cool air, never mind this current automatic button stuff.
28) Using a pencil to spin the loose ends of the tape. I feel like if you’ve never experienced the chore of this, you’ve never lived.
29) Betty Spaghetti and everything about it. Swapping those outfits, bendy legs and abnormal sized hands was just so joyous.
30) Being at your friends house and hiding when your mum picks you up. As though this is going to contribute to the fact you won’t have to go home.
31) Faking being asleep so you could be carried to bed. Laziness at its best. If only we could get away with that now.
32) Choosing the right word art for your PowerPoint presentation. This being the hardest decision to make on a traditional computer.
33) Owning a cyber pet and neglecting it. I still feel guilty for letting the poor thing die.
34) Pokemon cards. Those shiny ones were worth holding on to and were only given away with a huge trade/swap!
35) Pogs in packets of Wotsits. Whatever happened to those?
36) Feeding your doll with those cherries. You know what I’m talking about.
37) Stick on earrings and butterfly clips. To make you look as glamorous as a 90’s kid could.
38) Shopping in Tammy Girl and MK One. Nothing said happiness like a pair of turn up jeans and a printed babe top.
39) Those smelly gel pens. There was no stopping me having a sniff of my freshly written work.
40) The Nokia 3210 being my first phone. Playing Snake just never got boring.
41) Hair tools, and lots of them. Having the choice of crimping or straightening my hair with those removable sliders and getting my hair caught in the Babyliss twister bead hair brader.
42) Those headbands with names on. This is where the struggle of having an awkward, unusual name became real.
43) Those embedded letters on the lid of a Smarties tube. Finding a B once I opened my treat indicated it was just meant be.
44) The excitement of renting a video from Blockbuster. RIP Blockbuster, you’ll never be forgotten.
45) Saturday morning TV. Anyone else religiously watch SM:TV Live?
46) Those aliens you put in the fridge. Which never ever made babies like they were supposed to.
47) Receiving a microphone and blank tape recording set as a present. Cue the new found popstar popping up to say hello.
48) Fuzzy felt. I had a circus one AND a Tots TV one, if I ever came across them I’d still be ecstatic.
49) Groovy chick. Absolutely everything Groovy Chick. This was my bedroom in the mid 90’s.
50) Funky Friends. I remember the pencil case I had. The best bit about a new term was pencil case shopping.
51) A walkman. Deciding whether you want to insert your new S Club 7 CD or your Busted album was a genuine problem.
52) More fancy pens. Those Crayola mini stamper pens with star, moon, heart, circle, musical note, swirls, question mark shapes. They actually still sell these, guys!!
53) Those songs you made your own version of. Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin flew away. Uncle Billy lost his willy on the motorway, hey. Please tell me I’m not the only one who sang this.
54) The ice-cream man greeting your street. Running in for a pound for a screwball was the most tense time-ridden 2 minutes you’ll ever experience.
55) Sending recorded songs from the TV through infared. This was when the kid in me began to fade but my teen days seem so long ago now that I can still class this is a child moment.
What memories stand out for you?