52 Ancestors In 52 Weeks: Winter

Yes, m’am…yes, sir…our little group of Southern belles rocked the Forest Hills neighborhood of Winchester, Virginia, during the 1960s. We were like sisters, and we were attached at the hips. If you saw one of us, you would quickly see the rest of us. Peach, Smitty, Cleo, and I were a solid four. Sometimes, a few other girls would be tagging along; but we were the core group.

When the snow would fall and accumulate a few inches, we could be found dressed in layers and heading with our sleds to our famous Feagans Hill. Other kids in the neighborhood went there, too, and there was plenty of fun space for us all. The hill was right in the center of the street, but few if any cars drove down it during the day…the dads had driven the cars to work.

The fun would begin right after a breakfast of Cream of Wheat and hot tea. We had to get our insides warmed up. Putting together the warmest layers of clothing we could fit together: undershirts, flannels shirts, sweaters, pajama bottoms, pants, scarves, hats, and gloves. We were the forerunners of the Stay Puff Marshmellow man (from Ghostbusters) trudging up the hill. Sometimes, we were unrecognizable to each other. Our gang would be gathering.

The first flight of the day was the most exciting. We would line up and with our hands and arms gives ourselves a starting push. We were laughing, we were screaming, we were singing, we were propelling ourselves down the hill.

When we reached the bottom, we would all cheer and salute the hill. We were having the time of our young lives…not realizing the memories we were making. Off we went to take another ride. Around noon, we would head home for a short lunch break and to change into dry layers. Mom would be ready with warm bowls of soup and grilled cheese sandwiches.’

Our afternoon session would begin when Cleo would stop by for me. We would pick up Smitty and Peach. We would sled until dads started coming home from work. Being wet and cold played no part in our snowy playtime. We were the queens of Feagans Hill, and we rocked that neighborhood.

Postscript: This blog is dedicated to my best friend Cleo who died unexpectedly two years ago. I just know she is laughing it up by the side of the Lord reliving our girlhood escapades. Love you, girl!

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