<h1><img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-28692" src="https:\/\/mountainmedianews.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/13\/2017\/07\/Echo-Header_web.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="147" \/>All along the roadsides and meadows, the bright-eyed, cheerful daisies are blooming.<\/h1>\r\nThey are called the common oxeye daisy, but I don\u2019t consider them common.\u00a0 To me, they are the everlasting reminder of the end of the school term for the summer.\u00a0 They always seemed to bloom when school went out, and were waiting on us as we ran down the hill.\r\n\r\nAlthough I really loved school, there has never been a sensation like the last day of school.\u00a0 The last few days in the classroom seemed to drag by, and the days grew hot and long.\u00a0 Ah, the sense of freedom when the last day ended!\u00a0 With shouts of \u201cSchool\u2019s out\u2014School\u2019s out\u2014teacher wore her paddle out!\u2019 the weary students would chant as they trooped out.\u00a0 Some of the younger ones would get a little risqu\u00e9 and say, \u201cSchool\u2019s out\u2014school\u2019s out\u2014teacher wore her bloomers out!\u201d\r\n\r\nWe snatched at the daisies as we trooped home.\u00a0 There was time now to build playhouses, and the daisies were so versatile.\u00a0 They could decorate a cake, made of the blue clay mud that was waiting for us to dig out and fashion many things.\u00a0 They made perfect fried eggs, served in the little glass liners that we pounded out of zinc canning lids.\u00a0 The yellow centers, shredded like grated cheese, could grace a wild green salad. I remember the slightly doggy odor and it vividly brings back the days of summer childhood!\r\n\r\nOh, the fun that awaited us after school was out!\u00a0 I think of the poem that my mother often quoted, and the verse that said, \u201cDown the street with laughter and shout, Glad in the freedom of school let out, Came the boys like a flock of sheep, Hailing the snow piled wide and deep.\u201d\u00a0 (From \u2018Somebody\u2019s Mother\u201d by Mary Dow Brine.)\u00a0 Of course, we didn\u2019t hail the snow, and we weren\u2019t all boys, but we were just as exuberant as the scholars in the poem.\r\n\r\nAfter we started up the dirt road, we passed Opal Jarvis\u2019 garden on the left.\u00a0 She had a strawberry patch there, and the strawberry plants had scattered outside the fence.\u00a0 There on the roadside, the plump red berries were fair game for hungry children.\u00a0 I don\u2019t know if Opal knew we were picking the stragglers, but she wouldn\u2019t have scolded us anyway.\u00a0 She was a gentle, loving soul and a friend to all of us children.\u00a0 For years our daughter Patty thought she had three grandmothers\u2014Opal, Liddie Coon and Mom-Granny.\r\n\r\nI wonder if children nowadays have as much fun as we did during the summer.\u00a0 Our biggest decision each morning was where we were going to play that day.\u00a0 Many times, it was the woods that beckoned us-- cool, shady and full of mystery.\u00a0 We pretended that Indians were stalking us, and we could almost hear the soft step of the moccasin clad feet behind us.\u00a0 The neighbor boys and our brothers played rowdy games of \u201cCowboys and Indians\u201d while we girls would rather build playhouses.\r\n\r\nAnd build playhouses we did\u2014all over the woods, barn and corncrib.\u00a0 I was sixteen when I built and played in my last playhouse.\u00a0 I may not have stopped then, but the brother of a boy I was sweet on came charging through the woods and found Mary Ellen and me right in the middle of a playhouse.\u00a0 Actually, I don\u2019t think he had any room to laugh, as he was almost as old as I was, and he was playing \u201dCowboys and Indians\u201d with his cousin.\r\n\r\nWe did make our own fun.\u00a0 Our imagination knew no limits, and we didn\u2019t need a lot of manufactured toys to entertain us.\u00a0 On a rainy day, we played in the loft of the barn where the sweet-scented hay was stored.\u00a0 Sometimes we were aboard a ship sailing on the high seas, while hungry sharks waited on a careless sailor to fall overboard.\u00a0 Once we organized a secret club with headquarters in the barn, with Alen Wayne as president.\u00a0 Our club dues were kept in a tin can, and our charter was written in lovely violet pokeberry ink. The barn is gone now, as well as the children; some of them gone forever from this earth. The memories live on . . .\r\n\r\nAfter we were older, we hiked to Buzzard Rock and climbed Pilot Knob.\u00a0 Did we ever get bored?\u00a0 There was not enough hours in the day to do all we planned.\u00a0 Of course it was not all fun and games.\u00a0 The garden had to be weeded, hoed and harvested.\u00a0 We all had chores to do, every one of us.\u00a0 Water had to be carried in zinc water buckets, wash water carried from the creek, babies to be minded and household chores to do, as we grew older.\r\n\r\nOur way of life was good for us.\u00a0 We grew healthy and brown in the outdoors, and most of all we learned an appreciation for God\u2019s wonderful world as we played.\u00a0 We learned to use our imagination; we did not have to be entertained, and we also learned how to work.\u00a0 I thank the Lord for the childhood days spent here in the hills.\u00a0 On a spring day such as this, when the daisies are blooming and memories abound, I think of school days and long ago classmates.\r\n\r\n<hr \/>\r\n\r\nA little update on Polly\u2014she is not chewing up everything in the house now, but a few nights ago, Criss and I were sleeping peacefully in our bed, when a loud thump awoke me.\u00a0 It seems that she had chewed a big hole in the net of her doghouse, squirmed out and landed in our bed.\u00a0 It was dark, but I could almost see a big doggie grin from ear to ear.\u00a0 She has a new hobby now\u2014digging holes.\u00a0 I don\u2019t know if she is looking for buried treasure, or a new route to China, but she is very industrious about it.\r\n\r\nWe had her spayed this week, and the tiny incision is barely half an inch.\u00a0 It hasn\u2019t slowed her down much, although she wants to be held constantly.\u00a0\u00a0 She likes nothing better than to be snuggled up tight against us.\u00a0 She really is a treasure.\r\n\r\nDo you remember this song from the green songbook that all grade schools used?\u00a0 It is still as fresh in my mind as it was more than 75 years ago.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\u201cI had a little doggie, that used to sit and beg\r\n\r\nBut doggie tumbled down the stairs, and broke his little leg.\r\n\r\nOh doggie, I will nurse you, and try to make you well,\r\n\r\nAnd you shall have a collar too, and little silver bell.