Rummaging through my childhood memories, I find there are many from which to choose. I had a very happy childhood, it seems. As I flip through the images, I keep coming back to a rather early one. Froot Loops and Tickle Bees. And I should just say there that I'm rather tickled that I was able to find a picture of this old toy when I went looking.
I was raised in a loving family that was no stranger to touch. Tickles, hugs, and all-out war in Mommy and Daddy's huge bed. On Sunday mornings, my brother and I would scramble into bed with Mommy and Daddy, jumping all over them, and getting tickles from the tickle bee. Daddy's constant sleeptime uniform was tidy whities and a plain white t-shirt. The only times I ever saw Daddy in pajamas were when he was home sick. Mommy didn't stay in bed long; she would get up in her long nightie, and go to the bedroom to fix us Froot Loops in tall tupperware tumblers.
It's odd really. I remember that the tickle fests were on Sunday mornings. I remember that we had Froot Loops for breakfast. And I remember all of this in our pajamas and Daddy's
Heh. I suppose what makes it a favorite for me is the details that I do remember. The giggling. The finger raised so high in the air, with the requisite Tickle Bee narrative. Said Bee was so powerful that the finger needn't touch to elicit the gales of laughter. The confusing covers that weren't flat across the bed, but piled into a column down the middle. Grown, I now understand this as the simple result of flipping covers back from each side. Playing in the background, the final strains of the theme from Gumby, then the opening hymn for David and Goliath.
When Daddy bought me the Tickle Bee toy, I remember laughing that there was a real tickle bee, not just Daddy's finger.
All throughout my childhood, Mommy and Daddy's bed was a safe place. If I had a nightmare, I could crawl into bed with them, and they would keep me safe. When Daddy was on-base with the-duty, Mommy would let me AND my brother sleep with her all night. I loved cuddling up against my mommy's slippery night gown, squishing into her warm curviness.
I ate Froot Loops for breakfast on my wedding day.