It's a Sunshine Day
Photo credit: dawnsdaybreak.blogspot.com
I woke up this morning with a song in my head that I've decided is a perfect theme for summer: It's a Sunshine Day. That groovy tune brings to mind more than Peter Brady's embarrassing voice change (which he overcame in time for Amateur Hour). For some reason, this song about taking a walk outside with Mr. Sun reminds me of rainy days spent on the front porch playing with Barbie and Skipper, endlessly selecting their outfits from a trunk filled with fashionable wardrobes sewn by my mom.
If my sisters weren't home, I'd sneak a few moments with their Dawn Dolls and the dazzling mansion one sister built out of boxes and carpet remnants. I didn't have a Dawn Doll, and her diminutive size was irresistible. Dawn made pre-teen Skipper look like an Amazon.
If swimming lessons were rained out, my mom might allow me to open the special closet where Lite-Brite was stored. If swimming lessons were rained out for a second day, I sometimes got to play with my sisters' Spirograph or Barrel of Monkeys. On really special days, I nearly cried with excitement and I promised to be extra careful with the ancient Trace-a-Graph (Mod version).
The Trace-a-Graph was a little pink desk with a surface that lit up from a light bulb screwed to the inside. The Mod version came with a dozen traceable pages. Each page was a collage of tall thin girls and guys, hair styles, clothing, and accessories. I'd painstakingly choose the templates and trace them onto thin typing paper. The most difficult pattern to reproduce was the motorcycle jacket that was meant for one of the guys. Drawn correctly, the guy looked like Micky from the Monkeys. Micky scared me so I avoided that particular page of designs. After about half an hour, my drawings became professional and creative. But by then I'd usually run out of paper and the top of the desk burned my fingers from the high-wattage bulb.
Then I'd put away the Trace-a-Graph and head out to the front porch where Barbie, Skipper, and occasionally Dawn Doll were waiting. And I'd play, content, until the sun came out again.