All of these “throwback to childhood memories” posts that our team has been sharing through our birthday month are coming to an end … at least for now. The last one we’re sharing is from Miriam … who is the very newest addition to our
team family! Miriam just started with us this week and we’re so glad to squeeze in this one last childhood throwback so you can get to know her a little. Be sure to check out her bio too.
Being asked to pull out a photo from my childhood to share with a memory is kind of a tricky thing for me, mostly because there are not too many childhood photos of me in existence. It wasn’t that I didn’t have a happy childhood, because I did. It was just a different childhood. My mom was killed in a car accident when I was a toddler, and I was raised as the youngest of a combined 13 children by my dad and later a stepmother. With that many children in a house, maybe it wouldn’t have mattered the circumstances (who had time to pick up a camera or schedule a photo shoot?!?), but I just don’t think my dad thought to take many photos. Maybe that is part of the reason I decided to become a photographer: I know what it is like to have undocumented memories and long for them.
That said, I do have sweet memories of being that youngest child who got a different kind of one-on-one time with my dad than any of my older siblings. Before my mom died, my dad worked long hours and Mom ran the household. Dad was raised a city boy in Brooklyn, New York, with a Jewish mama who cooked and cleaned, and my mom picked up taking care of him from the day they were married. So, until she died, I’m not sure if he had ever cooked a meal in his life. Then suddenly, he was the sole provider AND caretaker of eight young children (luckily my oldest sisters were mature enough to pitch in and still do most of the cooking!). He went from working long days in an office to staying home with me, his youngest child, and that’s the memory I want to share.
I was the only child left at home during the day, which demanded a standing lunch date for Dad and me. I think he only knew how to make one “dish:” Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, sometimes with hot dogs sliced and served on top. When the hot dogs ran out, Dad improvised by putting Cherrios on top instead. (Somehow nostalgia still makes that sound appetizing!). I remember sitting on the counter and talking to Dad as we waited for the water to boil and then sitting at the table, side by side, eating the same exact lunch, day after day. Neither of us seemed to care; he made it fun. You see, Kraft had a promotion going on at the time to save proofs of purchase and become a member of the Kraft Cheese and Macaroni Club. We taped a poster to my bedroom door, and each of those lunch dates concluded with us adding another proof of purchase to it. We were both pretty darn proud when my authentic blue watch, signifying my membership in the Cheese and Macaroni Club, arrived.
It’s a simple, almost silly memory but one of my fondest because it is all my own and reminds me of special time spent alone with my dad who was doing his best to pull off duties he never dreamt he would have.
And for your own viewing pleasure: The Watch. [found with a Google search]