Teen Dreams – Junior High & Summer Camp

When I was about ten, I was quite certain that I had been born in the wrong country.

If you were a female born in Australia in the late 70s/ early 80s, chances are you felt the same. It all started for me thanks to the deliciously addictive literary masterpieces by Ann M. Martin. I was sure that my destiny lay over the ocean in a town called Stoneybrook, Connecticut USA. This fictional town was the setting for many of my tween daydreams and the popular novels of The Baby-Sitters Club.

Yep, you know them, and if you are anything like me, you read them all up to #10 479 or whatever ridiculous number they were up to at the time, including the white covered Super Specials (which I saved up for school holiday reading) and then you gave them up for the teenage drama of the never ending Sweet Valley High series and watching Degrassi when you got home from school.

Melbourne suburbia held no appeal for me – nothing could be more exotic and exciting than attending Junior High, eating in the cafeteria, not having to wear a school uniform, having parents that weren’t as strict as thought I mine were and HAVING A PHONE IN YOUR BEDROOM.  Probably the main source of envy for most Aussie teenagers – American kids in books, TV and film all had phones in their rooms. And awesome ones too. Hamburger phones anyone?

And while I’m confessing…I thought DJ from the sitcom Full House was the coolest and I desperately wanted her hair and dress sense.

And all the cool American kids went on Summer Camp. Where they slept in beautiful log bunk houses by a lake lined with ancient pine trees, paddled around in canoes and had crushes on their charming and handsome older Camp Counselors. They got up to all sorts of shenanigans, a la Hayley Mills in the Disney film The Parent Trap. Envy was my middle name. A few rainy days visiting Philip Island in Grade Six was as good as it got for me.

So when I saw fellow blogger Danny‘s call out for some zip pouches to be made for the summer camp she’s involved with, all those memories from my tween years came back. Lucky kids! Would I be part of a summer camp in some way? YES. So one of Danny’s lucky campers will be getting this:

The summer camp colours are yellow and green, and I had this pretty Moda floral in my stash (sorry, not sure of the actual name) and I lined the pouch in a green gingham.

And that’s as close as I’ll ever get to summer camp.

Kids these days – so lucky. The daydreams may have changed now, and are more likely to be about moving to a dreary town in the Pacific North West where the local vampire might just sit next to you in your first Biology class. But teen idols are more accessible than ever. For me it was latest pin up poster ripped from Smash Hits Magazine (ahh Keanu Reeves in Speed), now kids can stalk follow their every move on Twitter and Facebook.

What were your tween / teen dreams? Whose face was stuck with blu-tack to your bedroom wall?

And most importantly – did you love The Baby-sitters Club too?

18 thoughts on “Teen Dreams – Junior High & Summer Camp

  1. Ros, I think after reading your blog you and I were living identical lives during our tweens!
    Only difference being I did get to full fill my summer camp dream and I did it in Australia! NSW Sport and recreation run several camps over the school holidays! They are loads of fun!
    They also have Family camps, I'm wanting to thke the kids next summer! You should definately check them out!
    I'm sure they probably have them in Victoria aswell! =)

  2. Oh my god! You've just transported me back a few decades!!!
    I loved Degrassi!!!
    I remember my mother saying "You're obsessed with boys!" Due to all the posters on my walls, that came straight from the pages of Dolly & Girlfriend mags.
    I can recall wanting to name my first born son … Keanu River Axel 😀 Aaahhh… memorieeeeess!!! lol
    Cute little case btw 😉

  3. that was a flashback and a half! My giant poster was of Jason Priestly or 'my husband Brandon' as I imagined. I think my poster was from TV Week or Dolly. I got excited a while back when I saw that Degrassi was on TV again, but it's a new version…just not the same.

  4. I bought MANY of 'The Baby Sitters Club' books, but not for me… LOL!!! I did watch Hayley Mills in 'The Parent Trap' when it came out and I LOVED it!!! We weren't allowed to put posters on the wall, but I had lots of pictures of Davy Jones (The Monkees) and Paul McCartney.

  5. I didn't read any of them but my younger sister was addicted. I loved Degrassi every night after school though. I think I loved River Phoenix the most.

  6. I LOVED the baby sitter club (and the pony club) and sweet valley high! This is my child hood exactly. Everyone at school had posters of JTT and before that I remember some of the girls slightly older than me or those with older sisters being really into New Kids on the Block!

  7. I loved George Michael and Boy George…..ahemmm…. clearly I was so naive! As I moved into teenage years my room was plastered with Prince and Terence Trent Darby…followed by The Cure. Strange child i was. I was an avid reader, but cannot recall ever reading Babysitter's Club?!?!?! I did however read all of The Flowers In The Attic books! lmao. Great post!

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