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My childhood consisted of quite a few activities. Most of these were pretty typical, vacations, playing outside, enjoying family functions. This created a very happy childhood for me. There are some pretty vivid memories I remember much better than the others. Looking back on my childhood I now see where I got a lot of my influences from.
A big part of my childhood was television. It provided an easy form of entertainment for me at a young age. Some of my earliest memories include choosing a movie every night to watch before bed. My parents would often reward great behavior with buying me a new movie to watch. Another great memory of television I had was waking up at 7 AM before my dad would leave for work so he could turn on Sesame Street for me because I did not know how to work the television remote. Elmo was my all time favorite character to watch, with Tigger from Winnie the Pooh right behind him. As I started to get older I started to play video games on the TV which started out with a Nintendo Gamecube at home. I would play Sonic the Hedgehog and Tony Hawks Pro Skater 3 for hours on end. Me and my brother would play together and these are some of the best memories I have with him. My cousins and I also played a lot at my grandma’s house. These were really fun times because all the adults played board games or watched movies in the living room. I found myself behind a screen most of my life to entertain myself and get away from other people. I believe the TV and video games influenced my childhood very much.
Family was a very large part of my childhood. Every weekend was spent at my grandparents' house. If we went to my grandma’s house on my mom's side we typically would cookout, swim, play games as a family or watch movies. It was honestly some of the best times I have ever had. Our family was super tight knitted and we had a great time no matter what we were doing. We used to go camping together during spring breaks and summers and they were always super fun because my uncles were very outgoing and showed me and my other cousins cool stuff you could do outside, like how to build a fire, or how to make a spear out of a tree branch. On the other hand when I would go to my grandparent's on my dad's side the activities were completely different. My grandma watched the Food Channel nonstop and was always watching Paula Dean. It seemed that every time I would go to her house she would have made something new for me to try. I remember driving around to many different places with her and my granddad. Whether it was a restaurant she heard about on The Food Channel, or a chocolate factory, every visit was an adventure. These were very fun times but they were very different from the time I spent with my moms side of the family. This gave me a very diversified personality.
Vacations influenced me heavily as a child; my family went on multiple vacations a year. My first vacation I remember was to Colorado. On the way to our lodge we had rented out we stopped at a restaurant and I ordered chicken nuggets. I thought they were going to give me ketchup like all the places in Texas gave me. They gave me honey mustard and I had never had it, my mom made me try it. As soon as I tasted it I immediately stood up in my chair at 4-years-old and yelled “this is the best sauce ever.” My dad was embarrassed but my mom laughed and made me sit down. The next day we went through an old mine while riding in a minecart—this was super fun. My second major memory of this vacation was biking. My dad loved mountain biking so while we were in Colorado we rented bikes and rode around the mountains. It was great except for the fact I was only 4-years-old and didn’t know how to ride a bike. My dad made my mom rent a bike stroller so she had to pull roughly 70 pounds of weight behind her bike while my dad and brother zoomed off.
During my childhood I got injured a couple times, in a couple different places. I remember at the age of 4 my brother busted my eardrum with a Captain Hook sword from his action figure. This hurt so much but what was even worse was that the entire summer I had to wear an ear plug. This was the worst because my ears were so small and it always gave me a headache because it was so big. The same year we were at my aunt's house for a cookout and my uncle was in the middle of putting up his new fence that he had built for their house. He told all of the cousins not to climb on it because it wasn’t placed in the ground yet. Of course I had to be the cousin to climb it, and my parents were not surprised at all when it fell on me. That cookout ended in a fun trip to the hospital where they told me I had a broken nose and a problem larger than my busted ear drum. At my aunt's house once more I got injured. I was carrying a plate to the picnic table in her backyard and her dog jumped on me trying to get the food. He scratched my face really bad and gave me a very large scratch on my face which you can still see to this day if you look hard enough. I went to the hospital a couple times through elementary school for gas bubbles in my stomach which we soon learned how to fix without making a trip the ER. In eighth grade was my last large injury. I had almost broken my ankle at my friend's house. We were playing on the trampoline and I kept fake falling, we were having a great time. One of my highest jumps did not land so well and I landed on my ankle—this hurt a lot more than a rolled ankle. My friend did not believe I was actually hurt and he went inside the house while I laid on the trampoline immobilized. After he realized I didn't come inside he came back out and soon realized I wasn’t joking. I soon called my mom to tell her what happened… she didn’t answer. I then had to call my grandma and explain over the phone how to get to my friend's house to pick me up while I was in excruciating pain. I found out my mom was swimming which is why she didn’t answer the phone. The night ended up with me in the hospital with the doctor telling me I had sprained it very very bad. I had to go back to school wearing crutches and it was absolutely terrible.
Sports were a big influence on me as a child. My parents influenced me to try as many different sports to meet new friends and try new experiences. My first sport was soccer which I did for one season then I moved to baseball and basketball. These were great times for me but after basketball I picked soccer back up and really loved it. I joined soccer again in second grade because my best friend Jared had convinced me to join his team because they were good and his dad was the coach. During this time I met my friend Thomas who I spent most of my middle school years with, he is the friend that left me on the trampoline whenever I had hurt my ankle. Thomas, Jared, and I were great friends because of soccer. As the years passed me and Thomas stuck together on a recreational team while Jared left us to play for a select team. This is when me and Thomas had really become close friends playing for the same team for years “The Strikers.” This team influenced me heavily as a child because we were a family and our coach was amazing. His name was Mike and he not only taught us about soccer but also respect and morals. I am very thankful for my entire soccer experience. It ended freshman year of high school after playing club soccer for two years on a team I was not used to, I was getting burned out of the sport. During high school tryouts I did fantastic, but I did not want to play the sport anymore. I purposefully did not turn in my physical. The soccer coach came to my class room and asked me for it and I told him I never got it taken care of so I had to drop the class. Soccer was my favorite sport as a child and it influenced me a lot because it was the biggest part of my life for eight years of my life.
My childhood was pretty great. No life is perfect but the adults in my life tried their best to make it great and they did a pretty good job. I always was happy as a kid and never had any worries. The biggest problems I faced as a child were what flavor caprisuns my parents bought at the store, or what movie was going to be on TV each day. This happy childhood gave my personality a very large outgoing personality. I was always taught to try new things even if they did not seem appealing at all. Every aspect of my life came together to shape me as a person and I really am thankful for all that was given to me as a child. Whether it is the opportunity I had while playing soccer with my best friends, or the vacations I went on with my family, I was always happy without a doubt.