Through the Eyes of a Child

Join me in "Wednesday's walk down memory lane".
Leaves crunched under our oversized rubber boots as we pushed our way through our tree row, which we had called “Sherwood Forest” since the first moment we laid eyes on what would be the birth place of thousands of stories. Long walking sticks in hand, we discussed seriously which route we should take through the forest in order to reach the other side without confronting any hidden foe—dragons, orcs, and the dreaded Tyrannosaurus Rex were common villains in these woods.

Of course, we never made it through without our fair share of hardships…what fun would our adventures be without a few thrills? What thrilled me most were the silver puddles that sat motionless in the grassless earth beneath the trees. These were no ordinary puddles—to me, they were passages to another world. The trees reflected in them to an exactness that made it easy to imagine another world waiting to be explored on the other side of these windows into the earth. I always wanted to jump in and see where it would take me, just like Digory Kirke and Polly Plummer in C.S. Lewis’s classic, The Magician’s Nephew. I knew deep down that it couldn’t be real, but my child's heart told me to keep pretending.

After a long afternoon of dreaming up exciting stories and even living them to a certain extent, my brother Jared and I would go back inside the house, cheeks flushed and noses pink from the icy cold breeze outside—but the temperature didn’t deter us from going out again the next afternoon, and the next, and the next. While a pot of stew simmered on the stove, wafting smells of home throughout the air, we would rush to our “clubhouse”—a closet which we had cleaned out to make just enough room for the two of us to squeeze in with a flashlight and a book.

We’d sit, eyes wide with wonder as Jared read chapter after chapter of his books to me. Every once in a while, he would even have one of his own stories to share with me; always starting by professionally saying the title and then with a hint of pride in his voice he would follow with “By Jared Kraft”. I must admit, half of the time, I had no idea what the actual plot of the story was, but still my imagination was constantly stirred by the atmosphere of the tales.

After sitting in the cramped closet for what never seemed like long enough, we would emerge to hear the sound of our momma’s voice calling us for dinner. Food never tasted as good as it did after a day of tramping through the “forest”.

The year when we first moved into our big country house was one of the most exciting of my life—five acres of our own land for my imagination to run wild! I was five years old at the time and Jared, eight. Now, as my younger brothers are around the same ages (Jonas, 5 and Silas, 7 ½) I love to see them running around our property, making treasure maps, sword fighting, etc. Using the imagination that God gave them to create their own stories and memories for when they grow older. When I look at them and I see their eyes sparkle with the same glimmer of adventure that I always felt as a child, my heart swells. The freedom to imagine is something only a child can behold in all its glory. I hope that my children will be able to experience the same thing. Keep dreaming alive!
To read more memories, please visit Lynnette Kraft @ Dancing Barefoot.


Unknown said...

I can picture it all! I'm so glad that you and Jared have had such wonderful times together...imagination is such a beautiful thing.

Thanks for sharing Gracie.
Love ya to pieces.

Julie said...

Wow! What a writer you are! I could picture every moment! Those are such fabulous memories...imagination is SO important! Thanks for sharing!

I look forward to another great memory story next week!

Unknown said...

I am so impressed with your writing. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about your adventures with Jared. Imagination is so powerful and should never be lost as we grow older.
I wait to read more. I shall return.
Kathleen from RI

Pen to Paper; Spirit to Soul said...

Thank you for sharing such an awesome memory!

Mindy said...

Oh what a wonderful story! I could actually smell the stew cooking. What fun you guys have!

My boys imagine exactly the same things! You cannot imagine how many T-Rex's we have gallivanting around our little farm =) And Goblins too. Luckily my oldest Ben has put a protective circle around our house so we are safe when inside =) We sure do run over a lot of them as we leave the property though! LOL

Keep up the writing girlie! You are AWESOME and truly blessed with some wonderful gifts. (I love your art too!)

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful memory! I almost feel as if I was there! You are such a talented writer, and I'm glad you are so close with all your family, that is truly a blessing.

Tracy P. said...

We grew up with woods behind our house too, and I can just feel the heavy sigh of exhilaration after the adventures.

What a precious relationship with your brother.

Lilyofthevalley - Tanya said...

Brought back many memories of when my brothers and I would hike through the nearby woods. We had secret hiding places and favourite climbing trees! Thanks for lovely post, it brought back many memories of my own. :)

Rosezilla (Tracie Walker) said...

Hello, I wandered over to your blog - I have a 14 year old niece named Abigail Grace! i enjoyed your memory.

Laura Hoekstra-Bettig said...

Great post! I can relate to the "clubhouse" as I had a closet, too, that served as a private place to read a book by flashlight! Thanks for visiting my blog today, too! See you next Wednesday!

Linda said...

Abigail Grace,...you have such a way with words my dear granddaughter. It is hard to believe that you are only 15 rs. old sometimes because you are wise beyond your years.
God has given you many gifts, and I am so glad that you are sharing them with others.
I loved the post and as always I am looking forward to the next one!

happylittleprince said...

Wow! You are a gifted writer. Such a sweet story!

Kristin said...

You are definitely a gifted writer. I loved the story, especially the part about the stew smelling like home. I can so identify with that! I'm looking forward to the memories in weeks to come!

angie {the arthur clan} said...

Your post made me nostalgic for my own childhood when we did the exact same thing as you and your brother. We are now raising our kids in a house in the country so that they could have land to roam on as well. It's a fun way to grow up!

Beautifully written memory.

Jamimania said...

Abigail, you're an amazingly gifted writer, YOU GO GIRL! :) That's such a sweet memory of playing with your brother, I have similar ones that I can wait to write about and Ciara was standing here reading too and said, "Oh my gosh, that sounds like me and Brandon!" :) It's so fantastic to have those kinds of fond memories of our siblings - priceless!! Can't wait to read more of your stories, and I'm trying to convince Ciara to join in the fun too. :)

Sarah Robbins said...

What happy memories with your siblings. I have five brothers and sisters; aren't big families fun with all the adventures you have together?

The Demigoddess said...

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