Wednesday, February 17, 2016

It's The Little Joys We Remember

Sunday my daughter-in-law, Shelly, shared an article on Facebook titled "The Joy of Stoop Sitting" and asking the question of her daughter: "Remember this Alyssa? We often did this when you were very young. Miss stoop sitting with you!"

Alyssa replied: "Yes when we lived on Porter. We used to guess the next color of car that would pass or count the cars. I enjoyed that a lot when I was a kid."
(Only photo I could find of the stoop on Porter. Shelly and me in front, Shalea and Kari behind.)

My comment on their thread was: "I didn't know you did the car counting and color thing! That is something I did with my Grandma Lynam on her porch when I was a kid and Hwy 34 passed her house."
Photo of me and older brother Ron. Grandma's porch in the background. I remember so well sitting on those porch steps and counting cars or guessing the color of the next car to come along.

The article went on to say how stoop sitting is 100% free and requires no special equipment. The author commented that he believed many great decisions had been made and many problems solved from the perch of a good stoop.

That started me thinking about the large expanse of cement on the east side of the house where I grew up. It was probably 5'x10' and a comfortable sitting height off the ground. That's one end and the steps off it in this picture of my brothers, mother and me. In later years Mom had a bench out there, but when we were young, everyone sat on the cement.

I remember Grandpa Joe and Dad sitting there after dinner. Grandpa would be smoking a cigarette while he and Dad 'solved the world's problems'. I would be a few feet away twisting in the swing and listening in. J.R. (as I used to refer to Grandpa in my diaries, but never to his face) would pull out his pocket knife, pick up a stick and start whittling.

More from The Joy of Stoop Sitting - "Stoop sitting is for any occasion. The stoop can be a meditation room or a therapy session. It can be a great place to have that morning coffee or someplace to relax after a hard day."

This photo is of Bud and the grandkids, Katrina, Zachary and little Alyssa in front, sitting and standing on the back stoop in West Des Moines. It is a place I sat often, usually after working in the yard. I would sit and admire how beautiful it was back there.

Continuing the Facebook thread, I said, "Such a simple pastime and so much pleasure. Glad to know it carries on."
Shelly replied: "I hope that Lily gets a chance to stoop sit, too. Even if it's on the front porch."
Alyssa had the final comment: "It is one of my first and favorite memories."

I have no doubt that Alyssa will pass the joy of stoop sitting on to her daughter, Lily. (Shown here in her 'Dance Princess' costume from last night's performance.)

Final quote from the article: "I don't know what exactly makes this simple act so rewarding. Whatever it may be, it is good for the soul and should be done whenever possible."

Spring is almost here. Get that favorite stoop scoped out and plan to do some of your own stoop sitting. Enjoy one of life's simple pleasures!

1 comment:

  1. I remember a hot summer night in Guss, Daddy on the front porch listening to a radio just inside an open window, Joe Lewis boxing. (To look sharp every time you shave...). Daddy couldn't sit still when he was listening to a boxing match, but twisted and turned and threw punches right along with the boxers. Looking at Wikipedia and seeing the timeline of Joe Lewis' career, I wonder if my memory is wrong, because I wouldn't have been old enough to remember his big championship fights. Maybe it WASN'T Joe Lewis, but I do remember one hot summer night on the porch with Daddy helping the boxers as best he could. :)