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Just Outside My Door

January 23, 2014
Elaine Cole , Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

It is 10 degrees on this snowy Saturday morning Jan. 18. As I sit here at my computer I see the snowflakes continue falling down just outside my windows. We have already received 157 inches thus far and the figure will continue to grow for several more months. Nevertheless, we haven't yet had a bad snow storm and according to the calendar, there's only about nine weeks more until spring arrives! Meanwhile, keep your winter boots and coats handy.

Speaking of the weather, have you noticed the difference of how young folks and senior citizens dress when they venture outside in winter? We often go to the school basketball games and every time I'm amazed at how those kids are dressed. The majority of them don't wear boots, gloves or heavy clothing. Some even wear shorts! In contrast, I bundle up with a heavy coat or jacket, gloves and if the temperature is real cold I even wear long johns and sweatshirt under my regular winter outerwear.

Then I'm reminded how I used to dress when I was teenager, especially when I was a cheerleader. We wore short skirts, saddle shoes and never boots. We never went to school wearing shorts or jeans, though being cheerleaders, we could wear slacks on Fridays when we had a pep rally in school. I don't remember ever being cold in winter back then except the time our bus got stuck. I do recall that Mom often suggested we wear boots, but she didn't force the issue.

Something else I recall about dress edict is how folks dressed when they went to church, a funeral and other dress up affairs. Ladies and older girls always wore a hat and usually wore black at a funeral. The little girls also wore dresses and the boys, dress pants. My Grandma once told me that when she had a twin girl and boy, in those days the girl wore blue and the boy wore pink. Now days, they usually wear just the opposites.

Still another change that took place years ago was the type of shoes and even socks or stockings. When I was young, my grandparents always gave us girls long stockings. That was the custom when she was a child but not when I was young. Therefore, we thanked them for the gift but we didn't have to wear them unless we were going to see them. We never wanted them to feel bad. As for shoes, children never wore high heels until they were older. I recall how my friend Winnie and I felt about wearing high heels. We were determined never to wear such "dumb" things, but we changed our minds when we got older.

There are many other things that have changed over the years. I believe some are good and others are not, but time continues to make changes in a variety of ways. Wise parents must make wise choices as to what they will allow their children to participate in, especially during their early and even into their teenage years. Moreover, some folks will say that many teens nowadays are bad. I don't believe that is a true statement. I have known numerous youth over the years and the majority of them are caring, loving and productive in a variety of ways. It's always good to remember your own teenage years and also recall that we all make mistakes. No one is perfect whatever their age. That's not to say that they don't need some supervision. Parents must be good examples.



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