The other day I shared an excerpt from my book Not My Story To Tell. You can read that here. It was very well received so I thought I’d share another section of the book. This is about Justine and her sister, Candice.
“Justine and Candice were just under two years apart in age and one year in school. They did most things together growing up. Justine was always the leader and Candice happily followed along with all Justine’s ideas. Justine always included Candice when playing with her friends and Candice didn’t seem to get in the way. They were each other’s first best friends.
Playing school took place in Candice’s closet because it was always neat and Justine’s was always messy. They’d play “Jem” and sing the songs they heard on the animated TV show on their toy microphone. Justine was always “Jem” and Candice was one of the backup singers. They’d have sleepovers with mutual friends and play Barbie or board games. They especially liked Monopoly or Toronto-opoly which was a similar game but with local buildings and landmarks.
When Candice was a baby she loved to read Richard Scary’s books. They were simple stories but each picture was labelled with the word. If there was a table, the word table was there. She learned to read at a young age because we read that book over and over and I’d point to the item and she’d say the word. When Justine was in Grade One and learning to read, she’d bring home her reader to practice. Justine was a good reader but she was learning. Often Candice would tell her the word she was struggling with. I’d think it was so cute and funny but it would make Justine so mad!
“Don’t tell me, Candice!” She’d exclaim. It was a little annoying to have your little sister helping you.
The kids loved riding their bikes and playing outside. Our house was on a court and many happy hours were spend with the other kids riding around the circular road. Our next home was situated on a half acre property that was first used as a children’s playground. It had a huge slide that the previous owners had rescued from a park demolition. Tall chains held swings and bars perfect for kids to spend lazy afternoons playing on. The best part was the clubhouse perched beside a gigantic tree. It was flanked with a balcony and housed bunk beds and electricity. The property was surrounded by huge weeping willow trees that swept the ground. It was a children’s paradise. The girls spent many hours outdoors.
Justine and Candice shared a paper route for many years. This was a bonding experience and taught them co-operation and sharing. When one was busy, the other would pick up the slack for that day and it would always work out.
I was always happy that I had two girls so close in age that got along so well. It made raising them easy. They had many of the same interests and hobbies such as Guides, swimming lessons, youth group, alter servers and camp. They liked the same television shows and movies. Right up until teenaged hood they remained great friends.”