We All Scream for Ice Cream

icecreamby Hayley Westwood

Is it just me, or do other adults have a momentary relapse to childhood whenever they hear the repetitive, obnoxiously shrill, yet glorious sound of the ice cream truck enter their neighborhood?

For a split second, I always think, “Ice cream man!” and then I think, “Get it together, Hayley, you’re an adult. You can’t flag down the ice cream man. That’s embarrassing.” And then I watch longingly as it passes by. And briefly consider waving it down anyway. But ultimately adult Hayley prevails. Unless, of course, my nephew is around, in which case I pull the “cool aunt” card. “We MUST get ice cream for you!” (And since we’re buying, I guess I’ll take something as well…you know, to benefit the poor man driving that truck who has to listen to “Do Your Ears Hang Low” and “Pop Goes the Weasel” for hours on end – seriously, how does he not lose his sanity?)

Hearing this sound the other day got me to thinking about some of my favorite things about summer time as a kid, besides chasing down the ice cream man. So here they are, in no particular order:

  • Playing in the sprinklers and drinking from the hose. And don’t forget the sheer terror excitement of the slip’n’slide that went along with this.
  • Snow cones. (Still true as an adult.)
  • Lemonade stands. The kind where your parents probably spent more money on the products to make it than you made selling it. Because for every cup you sold, you also drank one.
  • Swimming…above ground, below ground, lake, city pool…always a good time.
  • Slumber parties. Including, but not limited to: Extensive trampoline jumping, truth or dare, ghost stories, movie marathons (Clueless, 10 Things I Hate About You…), prank calling, toilet papering (I mean, no…not me), calling radio stations to ask them to play “your song” and say your names on the radio, and a lot of discussions about boys.
  • Church camp.
  • Family Reunions. Seriously, as a kid, what’s cooler than driving around one of the smallest towns in Oklahoma with your 14-year-old cousin who has been driving since the age of 10? Nothing, that’s what.
  • Rollerblading. Throw in some hockey sticks and a concrete slab, and it’s even better. (Side note – that concrete slab just gave me the BEST flashback to the time my mom decided to show off her “pogo-stick-jumping-skills.” I use the word skills verrrrry lightly. It still makes me laugh. Sorry, Mom.)
  • The lake. Every. Thing. About it. Boating, tubing, skiing, swimming, family, the trailer we called our “cabin.” What’s not to love about the lake?
  • Fireworks. I LOVE fireworks.

I’m sure I’m forgetting some – anybody have any favorites I left out?

For your viewing pleasure, a photo of my mom, nephew and I after touring the Blue Bell Ice Cream Factory last week: Yum.


Contrary to what this post may have you believing, for the record, I pretty much LOATHE summer in Oklahoma these days. But I’m sure you’ll hear more about that as the temperatures start to rise like they soon will and I continuously say, “Is it fall yet?!?”

But for now I’ve got to run – I think hear something…“Do your ears hang low…da na na na na na na…”

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