Growing Up In The 80’s And What My Kids Are Missing

I’ve been inspired.
I know I’ve been away for FAR too long but I was inspired today by my “Twitter Twin” Joanna (find her on Twitter – @way2gomom).  She wrote a blog post titled 17 Things  I Grew Up With That My Kids Will Never Know.  Check it out – it’s a stroll down memory lane.
Dereck and I are constantly saying “Our kids will never know….” so her post came at just the right time today.  And I told her I was going to copy her idea.

10 Things My Kids Will Never Know
  1. Saturday morning cartoons – getting up at the crack of dawn, getting your bowl of favorite cereal and parking your behind down in front of the TV for hours and hours of cartoons.  There was no specialty channel to turn to – just the local channels.  Captain Caveman, School House Rock, Looney Tunes, Pac Man, The Smurfs, Gummy Bears, The Littles, The Smurfs.  Now the kids have 20 cartoon channels to watch, most of them showing cartoons 24 hours a day.
  2. Waiting for correspondence in the mail – when I was a kid, getting mail was a huge deal.  Like, it’s your birthday and you know there is money in that birthday card kind of deal!  The only way to correspond with your far-away family and friends was to call on the phone or to write letters.  There was no texting, no emails, no Skype.  The horror!
  3.  Kick the can – you know this game, right?  There is a can (usually a Diet Pepsi can from my Dad), a bunch of kids, the cover of darkness.  It’s sort of like hide-n-seek except the person who is “it” stays close to the can to protect it and the object was to get to the can and kick it.  We would play for hours, running all over the neighborhood.  Kids these days could never play this – no parent is willing to let their kids out at night because there are so many bad people out there now.
  4. Atari – If you were to stick this system in front of a kid nowadays, they would look at you with a big “WTF?” on their faces.  But in the 80’s, this was awesome!  Who knew a game of a guy jumping over a pit of alligators, a yellow circle chasing floating fruit and a frog trying to cross traffic would be something a child of the 80’s would cherish?
  5.  Life with no cable – kids who grew up in the 80’s weren’t inside, watching Nick, Disney, Cartoon Network.  They were outside until either the streetlights came on or your parents were yelling your name.  Now kids have 600 channels to chose from.
  6.  Encyclopedia Britanica – with the internet accessible to everyone and a trillion websites available, no one is using encyclopedias.  This is evident by the fact that Encyclopedia Britanica is no longer going to use print books.  When I was a kid, my Dad bought a set of encyclopedias.  When I was bored, I would pick a letter and read through the book.  And every year we would get a year end review.  Those were my favorite!
  7.  Having to use the library as your research tool – remember going to the library to find books for your research papers or school reports?  I do!  If you know me, you know I love the library.  So this is something I am sad that my kids will never know.  Yes, using the internet is easier and faster and honestly, better.  But how great was it to pick out 3 or 4 books and have to actually read them to find your information?  Ok, this might have only been great to me.
  8.  Recording the radio – anyone born in the 80’s did this.  Waiting, impatiently, for your favorite song to come on the radio and pushing “record” at just the right millisecond.  Usually it was during the Top 40 countdown with Casey Kasem or Rick Dees.  Now, the kids just ask for a song and it is downloaded onto their iPod in minutes.
  9. Typewriters – Click, click, click….the super thin typing paper, the whiteout because you are going to make a mistake and then trying to type over it in just the right spot but never actually getting it.  Nothing beats the sound of typing on a typewriter or the ding of reaching the end of a line.
  10. Christmas catalogs – come on!  This was the best part of the holidays!  My brother and I would go through the Sears, Penney’s, Montgomery Ward Christmas catalog, circling everything we wanted.  And I mean everything!  I remember getting a wood burning kit because I thought it would be cool.  It wasn’t.  So we’d circle, then write a list for Grandparents and whatnot and we’d send them off in the mail.
As much as I loved my childhood and all of the cool things we did……my kids have a lot of opportunity now for learning.  The internet provides them a wealth of information that they would never get from a book in the library.  They can visit historical sites, see pictures of people from the past, visit countries, continents and see the world with a click of the mouse.
I can’t wait to see what my grandkids will be into and what they are going to miss out on.  Life changes and technology grows by leaps and bounds daily.  It’s exciting!
What are some things you would add to this list?
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5 thoughts on “Growing Up In The 80’s And What My Kids Are Missing

  1. Great list! Isn't that totally fun? LOL You've definitely had some good ones that I forgot about! I still have a typewriter or two stashed away in the garage…

  2. Pingback: My kids will never know - Slightly Off Kilter

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