Friday, August 23, 2013


There's something so right, and yet, so wrong about this picture...

I'm instantly transported back to my childhood. Some of the greatest, most carefree years of my life. Every summer my parents would take us to this amusement park in Green Bay called Bay Beach. There were rides, and arcade & a couple different park areas to cook out and play on swings & slides under these huge trees right on the bay. Most of the time my Grandma Madeline (my Mom's Mom) was with us. She would go on the train ride and the merry-go-round with me as many times as I wanted. I wasn't a thrill seeker or a risk taker. I had bad experiences on the tilt-a-whirl and the scrambler at a young age and they terrified me. The ferris wheel was so huge I was intimidated by it. I did go on the bumper cars once in awhile but my brother always thought it was funny when he and his friend spun me out and cornered me so I lost interest fast. The building that contained the arcade looked like the White House--at least it did to me, a 9 year old from Wisconsin. :). There was also a small concession stand inside with a lot of tables. So while we played games, my mom and my Grandma would sit at the tables that looked out over the bay. Sometimes the big double doors were propped wide open and that air would fill the building. When I close my eyes, I can be there again. I can here all the "dings"! and "bling blings"! from the games and feel the humid bay air whip through my hair. But my FAVORITE part? THE COTTON CANDY STAND. That's right. I was so easily pleased. I absolutely loved the way that sweet sugary smell drifted on the breeze all through the park! It was the classic, trademark, "cotton candy pink". Freshly spun onto a cardboard stick while you waited. 
I'm guessing that by now you have guessed what was "wrong with that first photo. If not, maybe this one will help. 

I'm not a fan of the imposter colors that have made their way into the cotton candy world. I'm also not a fan of the fact that finding a cotton candy stand that will give you freshly spun cotton on a stick is a rarity. It's all pre-bagged. Ugh. I guess I have to make my peace with that. And sometimes I can make my peace with the blue cotton. But I can't deal with that yellow and green stuff. Why are they ruining something that was so great in it's classic form? Evolution? Is evolution of cotton candy even a true concept? I guess if you love it as much as I do, then it is. 
I know this is a short post, but man, this cotton candy thing really bothers me. LOL I really am hanging on to my childhood a little too tight. :)

Thursday, July 4, 2013


It's crazy how your mind gets flooded with memories of your childhood when you visit the same places time after time. This year, Pat & I are waiting for the fireworks in the same little town that I watched them in while I was growing up. I remember the summers they were rained out and cancelled and it felt like the world had ended because it was one less exciting summer night out spent with my friends. I was a country girl. I wasn't like the kids who lived in town and they could all walk or ride their bikes to the nearest park to hang out every night. Seeing my friends during the summer was an event, it took planning and coordination among parents. Not an easy task to accomplish, especially on a holiday. Luckily most everyone around here celebrated in the same small town.
When I was young, we started the day at my Grandma's house just north of the city limits. We picked her up and came back into town for the parade. In the 30 some years I attended that parade, I have to say not much had changed. But it was oddly comforting. :). Then after we gathered up our handful of candy we went back to Grandma's house and had a cookout. We hung out all day until it was time for the fireworks and then we came back up to the park where we laid in the grass impatiently waiting to see the glow of the flares the firemen used to light the fireworks display. It's all done by hand here--it still is.

Over the years some things have changed, our Grandma has gone to heaven. But I like to think that when I'm here, in her town watching these fireworks that on a few occasions we watched from the bedroom window of her house, that she is with me. My Aunt & Uncle built a house on Grandma's property. For many years they carried on the parade/cookout tradition. Now we host the the cookout and have foregone the parade. I miss it, to be honest. I actually got to be in it a few times. My sister's employer had a float and I was invited to throw candy. It was about 100 degrees that day and we had a Chevy truck bed full of goods. I was with another girl and we just left the parking lot to get on the route, and we encounter this lovely senior lady, a very warm, gramma-ee looking woman watering her flowers in the front yard. My friend and I smiled and waved to her and she turned the garden hose on us! That pretty much set the tone for the parade route. We got water-ballooned from rooftops, and ambushed with 5 gallon pails of the coldest water on earth. The truck bed looked like a pool and we looked like drowned rats. We ended up giving an entire box of candy to someone toward the end of the route just so we could hide! And somehow... It's one of the best times of my life!

I've wanted to explore and go other places for the 4th because I heard their fireworks are better, but my heart keeps bringing me back here. I've only missed a few years. And in comparison to where I was, I wish I had been here. Even through the suckee years where the displays were cheap and they sucked!
Big picture: I'm here right now, it's dusk and the neighbors are shooting off some impressive "warm up" fireworks. But I am anxious for the big show. I'm going to put this blog on hold because I would like to try to capture a few photos to insert in here to lessen the boredom factor. :) Happy 4th of July everyone! ~ Angi
As promised: photos... (All captured with my iPhone 5, so I know they aren't the greatest quality--but they are still fun!)