Updated: Jan 18, 2021
I didn't grow up with a ton of money. Not that you notice much when you're a kid, especially in the 90's. It's not like the other kids had new iPhones or anything for me to realize my lack. I only ever remember being envious of my cousin's Sega when he would bring it over, but I just thought my parents didn't buy that for us because they wanted us to read more (see blog post #1). Looking back now I realized how much my mom utilized every single free event she could for us which is probably the reason I never realized that we didn't have much. Like she would send us to EVERY SINGLE vacation bible school in the area each Summer. It didn't matter that we had never even been to that church in our lives, they were free and we went back to back with VBS. It's honestly all one big blur, I probably didn't even realize they were different churches back then. Side note: I have no idea how she found out about all these churches hosting VBS. There was no google and we had like one running car between both my parents.
Another thing I remember doing all the time were these Friday night street fairs. Shout out to Monrovia, California for being consistent! Almost every Friday we would be out there and I would be practically climbing the fence to try and get to the petting zoo. I still have a nostalgic love for huge bags of kettle corn even though I blame all of my childhood cavities on them. Those fairs were the highlight of my week. Sometimes we were able to go on the Ferris wheel or get the bigger bag of popcorn, but none of my memories have a dollar sign near them.
A few weeks ago I was privileged enough to take pictures for Light Up Lowell, Which is essentially how my little town of Lowell, MA marks the start of Christmas time. There is food and pictures with Santa and a huge parade and the night ends with City Hall being lit up with lights. It's a free event for the whole family. You can bet your bottom dollar that my mom would have taken us from start to end.