Just Let Me Sleep

Grandma Kc wrote this on December 27th, 2013 18 Replies

This is a special memory from my own childhood.

I have always been a good sleeper. My sister did not like to sleep. She hated going to sleep at night but more than anything, she hated taking naps. I loved my naps! This was a problem. A problem caused by the fact that we slept together in a big double bed. A problem for me because my mother thought since I was the oldest I could make her behave. The fact I was only 1 year and two weeks older didn’t help, she wasn’t going to listen to me. My sister didn’t want to sleep so she couldn’t see any reason why I would want to. I think it was her goal to keep me awake!

Napping with my sister

Our bedroom was upstairs. Like many old houses, there was a vent in our bedroom floor and in the ceiling of the front room that allowed hot air to rise into our bedrooms. This wasn’t a regular furnace vent, simply an opening between the 2 floors where vents had been placed. We could look through that vent with only the grill to obstruct our view. Not only was it a great place to spy from it was also a great place to sit and listen to everything that was going on downstairs.

My sister would sneak out of bed and come back to wake me with the current news. “Wake up, wake up, mom is making pie.” “Wake up, wake up, mom is doing laundry.” “Wake up, wake up, the phone is ringing.” I would try in vain to get her to be quiet and go to sleep. Way to often mom would hear us and come charging up the stairs to find out why we weren’t sleeping. Even though I wanted to be sleeping and had been until someone woke me up, she would be mad at both of us. I never thought it was fair that I should get in trouble!

Really, we are trying to nap

Years later, I was a morning person. My sister always slept late. I was a light sleeper. She could sleep through anything and any noise. She even slept through our first earthquake in California. When she was old enough to work, she would set two alarm clocks and sleep through both of them. She didn’t turn them off – she just never heard them.

Me, I still get up early and I still love my naps.

18 thoughts on “Just Let Me Sleep

  1. Olga

    I just loved this story and the pictures. I was the oldest, too (of 4), and I can so relate to the unfairness of everyone getting in trouble for the mischief of one!

    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I ended up being the oldest of four but not until I was 20 so it was a lot easier since I wasn’t even living at home by then. Sure wouldn’t have wanted to have the 4 of us as little children at the same time and in the same house!

  2. Launna

    I agree with you Kc… you should not have been accountable for your sisters behavior… since I was the oldest one on my side of the family… I was expected to set the example… that’s a lot for a child to handle. I’m a morning girl too… usually up by 4:00-4:30 😉

    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      It really is a lot of pressure! But I guess I am not alone. It seems to be a common problem if you’re the oldest. Even teachers did it as we grew older. Bosses, too! I can remember when we were both in high school and working at Ontra’s Cafeteria and the boss yelled at me because she was late for work!

  3. Joyce

    What cute, happy sisters! I love the spying through the vent! You two must have felt really smug about knowing what was going on down there, even though you preferred to have been asleep. These stories of life as a little kid with a sister to share everything with remind me so much of my own childhood. Even the black and white photos look the same, although the three of us were all blonde! Please do more of these. I love them! (And most importantly, so will Amara!)

    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      I wish I could get all of the Grandmas I know to write them, too! We could start a new fad – Flashback Fridays! I am so glad Debra talked me into doing them! I love reading all the comments of other grandmas and their stories! That often leads me to more memories and it is just so much fun! Every time I think of an idea I just add it to the list. I think Amara will enjoy them more when she gets older but her Mom is enjoying them now and learning things she didn’t know – and thinks I’d always just assumed she did! Did I mention I am having fun?

  4. Joy @ Yesterfood

    Grandma Kc, I certainly identified with this post- I love to sleep and always have! And naps? Yes, please! 🙂 Once again, you have taken me to a wonderful old house….I can almost see the two of you peering down the vents into the world below! ?

  5. Judy@grandparentsplus2

    What a chuckle you gave me. I never had a sister, BUT I slept upstairs at my grandparents’ farm and the only heat was the vent you described. Freezing cold over Christmas vacation, but I could smell fresh donuts when my grandma was frying them. I love these memories – keep them coming.

    1. Grandma Kc Post author

      You are so right about those vents! They say hot air rises but it sure didn’t seem to – or maybe there just wasn’t enough hot air to begin with! I remember those Michigan winters in that room and it was so very cold! It was the one good thing about sleeping with my sister, extra body heat!

      Maybe you should start writing some of your memories? I bet your grandchildren and your children would enjoy them and learn a thing or two about you! Us, too!

  6. Lisa @ Grandma's Briefs

    So amusing. Little sisters can be such a pain! I was always the little sister in the full bed I shared with my sister. (Though there were three more sisters younger than us!). I didn’t pester her, though, for she was just way too mean.

    I do love to sleep… and am an early riser. The sleeping through anything? Not since having to keep one ear open for the comings and goings of teen daughters.

    Great story and adorable photos!

  7. Sandy

    I love the photo of you two!! You guys were adorable!! I agree that you should not have been responsible for getting your little sister to sleep.

    I remember those old floor/ceiling vents! My grama and grampa’s house had one and it was used for the same thing – spying on the grownups!! When all of my cousins were home to visit Grama and Grampa – which was only once a year since 3 of them lived in CA and the other 3 lived wherever my Air Force uncle happened to be stationed – all 7 of us slept upstairs in the giant bedroom which had 2 double beds in it. I don’t know how any of us got any sleep! It was like a week long pajama party for all of us. One of our favorite things to do to avoid going to sleep was watching our parents downstairs thru that vent in the floor. And when that got boring, we would tear up tiny pieces of paper and drop them through the vent with the goal of it landing on someone’s head below. It was impossible not to giggle and eventually roll on the floor with laughter!

    When I think about those days now and see it from the perspective of my parents and grandparents, they must have been in heaven like all of the kids. Just being together again all in the same place, sharing stories, hearing us upstairs and knowing we were just ‘being kids’ had to be a great time for them as well.

    I hadn’t thought about those times in years, Kc. Thank you for sharing your sweet memory which brought mine back to me as well! xoxo

  8. Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti

    Such cute photos of you and your sister! My maternal grandmother had a floor vent in her guest bedroom, like the one you described. It was over the kitchen and I loved to “spy” on my parents and grandmother by kneeling down to listen to them talk in the early morning when we had overnight visits. I’m a deep sleeper once asleep but I’m usually a night owl and I like ti stay awake reading at night 🙂

    Happy 2014!

  9. Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma

    My little sister and I slept together for a while after she outgrew her crib. I didn’t like the intrusion and I remember being mean to her, more than once. I’d mark a line down the middle of the bed and then “chop” at any part of her that crossed the line. Ooh, not nice.


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