Well When I Was A Kid I Walked Two Miles In The Snow Uphill So I Could Play Miss Pacman

The Lillian Vernon Christmas catalog arrived in the mail Friday and I handed it to Miss C in the car as we were pulling into our driveway from school. She started flipping through the pages and I told her that when I was a kid we got something called the Sears Wish Book and that I’d pick out what I wanted for Christmas. This revelation blew right over her head as she was engrossed in the personalized pink leopard luggage.

Then our neighbor’s little girl came over to play for a little while. Miss C was excited about showing her something and headed down the hall toward her room. I blew it off until I saw her run into the den with a dusty Jim Croce album in her hands.

Look at what my daddy has! It’s a RECORD PLAYER!

And then my youth unfurled itself at my feet and all I could think about was making mix tapes from Casey Kasem’s Top 40 weekly radio show, stretching the cord on our harvest green wall mount kitchen phone as far as it would go so I could talk to my friends in semi-private, watching Friday Night Videos on my little color TV with rabbit ears, and our first microwave oven that weighed 5 tons.

That’s right kids. There was once a world not dominated by YouTube, reality TV, and Ryan Seacrest.

I just posted a new giveaway on my review blog for two $50 e-cards to a lovely online children’s boutique called Bei Bambini. Check it out and have a great weekend!


  1. Malia says:

    DB brought the mail in yesterday and it contained a thicker than usual flyer from Target. It was their “toy catalog” (a far cry from the Sears Wish book). My husband asked if, as a kid, did I go through the Sears Wish book and mark off things that I wanted for Christmas? Honestly, I don’t remember doing that, I may have but it’s just not a part of my consciousness.

    Well, he said, this could be like the Sears Wish book for our kids. I balked, at first, because the image of my children drooling over bright plastic toys that they will promptly forget about 24 hrs post Christmas morning frenzy, just didn’t seem very Christmas-y to me. However, my kids really have *no idea* what they want for Christmas. We don’t have cable tv, they mainly watch PBS and videos that we have at the house or get through Netflix. Since they are both in school now, I do most of my Target-ing without them and have not been dragged to toy aisle (except for having to get birthday gifts for gazillion birthday parties they’ve been invited to this year. Seriously, what gives with that? I thought the economy was bad and people were cutting back! Oops…I digress….)

    Wow, this comment has gotten rather long…

    Anyway….all that to say, I think I’m handing over the Target toy catalog to them today and we’ll see what happens. {hold me}
    .-= Malia´s last blog ..Faith in Humanity =-.

  2. Mary@The Writer's Block says:

    Malia–you are a brave woman.

    Jamie–love this post. It took me back.

    When I was in eighth grade, my parents reluctantly agreed to get a separate phone line for my sister and me. We talked on the phone so much that business calls to my dad were not able to go through (this was before call waiting). We had a white wall-mounted rotary dial phone in the hall between our rooms. We did the super-cord stretch for privacy, too.
    .-= Mary@The Writer’s Block´s last blog ..I Am Tired, Part 2 =-.

  3. Jamie says:

    Malia, whatever you do, stay strong and don’t ever let your kids watch the Cartoon Network…OMG. The girls really like Scooby Doo and I started letting them watch it occasionally on Cartoon Network around Halloween. The feature film length “you must have this cool toy for Christmas” ads are on there constantly.

    I, uh, recycled the WalMart flyer that came in the mail the other day with a lot of toy ads. This Lillian Vernon catalog is already giving them a ton of ideas so I may just have to recycle all other Christmas catalogs that come in the mail! 😉
    .-= Jamie´s last blog ..Well When I Was A Kid I Walked Two Miles In The Snow Uphill So I Could Play Miss Pacman =-.

  4. Bluegrass Mama says:

    Oh, I loved the Sears Wish Book! However, I never had my own TV, and my family didn’t even get a color TV till I was 12. My first microwave was after my husband and I were living in our second house. Yes, your post did make me feel old. Why do you ask? 🙂

  5. Jennifer says:

    Walking through Opry Mills last night there is the Mario kiosk and my kids thought that “the olden days” were so cool. I tried to tell him that we didn’t have all the stuff they had but he just interrupted me, begging for a Wii.


    And our wishbook was actually the JC Penny catalog — but it wasn’t Christmas. We lived in Germany when I was little and mom would order our clothes for the next school year in early summer and I would wait all summer for the big package of plastic wrapped American clothes!! My favorite was the pink/green plaid skirt, white blouse and hot pink skinny tie to go with it. Hot, I know!

  6. Jessica says:

    HOLY COW the Sears Wish Book! That and the JC Penney Christmas catalogue – those were Santa’s workshop at my house. And Casey’s top 40 countdown – for my ninth birthday I got a “boom box” that could play a cassette AND record off the radio! I spend all Sunday afternoon waiting with my fingers poised above ‘play’ and ‘record’ so I wouldn’t miss it when my favorite Madonna or Cindy Lauper song came on….My mother was so wise, she made Sunday afternoon “clean your rooms” day so I had to work during ads…and she used to tape (on VHS! Gasp) the top ten video countdown once a week so we could watch them whenever we wanted – When did I become old? LOL
    Jessica in KS

  7. Ernestine says:

    Yes, mom did most of her Christmas shopping for Santa out of the Sears catalog.
    You, your sisters and brother – would mark what you wanted Santa to bring you.
    Think there was a limit – 3 or 4 things. Remember there was a house full of children.
    .-= Ernestine´s last blog ..November Sunset =-.

  8. Karen Hartzell, Graco says:

    I loved the sears wish book too. My dad still has a christmas list from when I was too small to write hanging in his office. My mom helped me cut out pics and make my list for Santa. I’m guessing we’re pretty close to the same age with all the other references you made. I think I need to go get some tea and a lap blanket for under my laptop. lol
    .-= Karen Hartzell, Graco´s last blog ..November and December are months to CELEBRATE!! =-.

  9. amy2boys says:

    My sister and I LOVED the Sears Wish Book!

    Our first dishwasher was the size of a washing machine and was on wheels. It was parked in a corner of the kitchen, and when we used it we rolled it over to the sink and hooked the hose up to the faucet to run a load. Hilarious!!!!!!
    .-= amy2boys´s last blog ..Candied Sweet Potatoes =-.

  10. 2timesamom says:

    Hey I meant to tell you to check out http://www.angeltots.com they have a wonderful portal for parents to build safe and moderated online communities surrounding their children’s childcare activities. Its a great place to share photos, videos, events, and discussions. Check it out!

  11. Deb - Mom of 3 Girls says:

    LOL – wow you brought back a whole bunch of memories there! Ms. Pac Man… the Sears Wish Book… phone cords… making mix tapes from Top 40 songs – I still have a box full of tapes around here somewhere… 🙂

  12. Katie says:

    Oooh, I remember getting the Sears Christmas catalogue. My grammie used to get it and save it for me till I went to visit her, it was such a big deal to flip through that book and circle every girl toy I could find. Hee hee 🙂

    We just got the Toys ‘R Us holiday catalogue in the mail this weekend and my daughter who’s not ever two yet is already saying “Bella want this one” to every toy she sees. I am in big trouble!!
    .-= Katie´s last blog ..LeSportsac Zoo in Love Baby Bag Review & Giveaway =-.

  13. Rob says:

    Although visiting the past IS funny, and sure, the notion of one of our kids finding an old LP ‘vintage’ is laughable, is the world REALLY any different today?

    Kids beg for Wiis now, thirty years ago I begged for an Atari.

    I would’ve killed for a walkman when I was ten. Ten year olds today would kill for an iPod Touch.

    Kids want (and some very lucky one have) their own cel phones now, and when I was a kid it was the same as having your own phone line in your bedroom.

    There will always be advancements in tech, and kids will always want the cool new product they see others have.

    And the world keeps turning…

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