Monday, February 28, 2011

Sounds from my Childhood: " Red Rover, Red Rover"

When I was in elementary school, our neighbors Ed and Agnes invited me to go to Bible School at St. Stephen's United Church of Christ in Sandusky, Ohio. I was friends with their twin sons, Larry and Garry. At Bible School, we were playing "Red Rover" in a grassy lot adjacent to the church. The only people I knew in this whole church were Larry and Garry, so when the opposing time wanted me to try to break through their line, they chanted:

Red Rover, Red Rover, let Short Fry come over!

Well, my name is Dorene, so I didn't know that Short Fry meant me! Finally my teammates pointed to me, and they said "They mean you!" So...I ran over to the their line of kids, arms linked together, and of course I could not break through the line. You can read about the game "Red Rover" at WikiPedia.

Other sounds I recall from that Bible School summer session was the song, "I've Got the Joy." At our Lutheran Sunday School, we sang the song very calmly. At St. Stephen's, the youth song leader encouraged us to shout "Down in My Heart" very loudly! It was great fun, and I used to sing that song to my own children when they were preschoolers.

Agnes and Ed were wonderful neighbors! Agnes helped my mom with recipes and babysitting, and Ed helped teach both my mother and myself learn to drive. Agnes hosted a bridal shower for me in her basement in her Bay View home, and invited our whole family to a host of parties, weddings, and picnics throughout the years. When my father was dying of cancer, Ed would sit with him for hours. As Agnes got older and lived in a nursing home, we would stop in and see her with our grandchildren. She always said that what she missed most about being in her own home was cooking. Agnes and Ed are both gone now, but they made our lives richer, and showed us what being a good neighbor was all about.

(Ed and Agnes Balduff are buried at Sand Hill Cemetery in Erie County, Ohio.)

In a unique turn of events, by the time my husband and I got married, the church which formerly was St. Stephen's United Church of Christ, at Jefferson and Lawrence Streets in Sandusky, Ohio, was Faith Memorial Church in 1973. The church where I once played "Red Rover" was the same location as our wedding!

This blog post was written for Week 9 of 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin, and hosted by Geneabloggers. This week's prompt was: Sounds.


Harriet said...

What beautiful memories! It seems growing up we had the best neighbors but now neighbors don't visit and in many cases don't even know each other.

Dorene from Ohio said...

Thanks for stopping by, Harriet! It sounds like you and I both had terrific neighbors in our growing up years!

Greta Koehl said...

Your description of your neighbors reminds me of a family we used to live next door to - the Donaldsons. The two daughters took turns babysitting me and the mother would often give me little toys when I went to visit. There is nothing like good friends and neighbors to make a neighborhood!

Dorene from Ohio said...

Memories of good neighbors are so special!

Dorene from Ohio said...

When Ed and Agnes's daughter Ruth babysat for us, she made us grilled cheese sandwiches that were cut into triangles...we never liked Mom's rectangular cut sandwiches again:)