Well, so far Alec is doing well in seventh grade. The first two days, he had half-days, and that went really well. By Tuesday afternoon, he looked at me and said, "I've had . . . I've had a GOOD day." That is huge for us, when he initiates a comment about something that has happened. (Finger-crossing time, People).
Cate and Abby start next week, and as far I can tell, they are pretty cool with it. Abby will be going to a new school this year, because she is starting middle school. Previously, Cate went to that same middle school so Ab is familiar with the building. Yeah!
While going through more of the folks' boxes of papers and such, I came across some things Mother had saved. I found the very papers I had colored on MY first day of school. I actually remember sitting at a group table, wearing a pale yellow sweater, and pressing the big fat crayons as hard as I could on the mimeographed drawing, because I wanted my reds and yellows and blues to be as dark as possible. I had crudely written "Janene" on the pages. Back then, Kindergartners didn't have to have too much knowledge of printing or coloring or counting before going to school. That is what they wanted to teach you during that first year. Now, kids are computer-smart, can almost write in cursive, and can read to a certain degree. I vividly remember friends Jeanie N. and Sue B. on the first day. They were wearing matching green print dresses that their grandmother (?) had lovingly made for them to start school. Since they were dressed alike, I asked them if they were twins, and they both laughed in glee about that remark. I also remember the afternoon "milk break" that we did. I hated to drink milk (still do), and that became a stressful time of day for me. As I recall, we didn't go half-days for a whole school year like many Kindergartners do today. . . we went full days for a half year. Surprise, after a few months, you got to stay home again, until the shock of First Grade, when you got stuck going a whole long day for an ENTIRE year!.
Since people move around so much these days, it is fun to remember all the kids that started school together and then ended up graduating together. Sue, Jeanie, Betty, Janna, Cindy, Ron, Keith, Paul, Karl, Verna, Craig, Leonard, Eileen, Chester, Steve, Loren, Al.
In our day, school clothes shopping often consisted of going to Rockwood's Store and selecting some cloth off of the material bolts in the backroom, and having your mom or grandma sew you some skirts or dresses. There was also the thrill of looking in the Montgomery Wards catalogue and picking out some plaid shirtwaist dresses (three for $10.00) You were supplied with a pack of socks, a pair of tennis shoes that were to last you until you outgrew them. (none of this super-expensive assortment of several pairs of shoes), a slip, some undershirts, underwear, a sweater and a couple of blouses. I don't remember getting any slacks or jeans. During the cold winter, girls were only allowed to wear long pants when the temperature dropped to 0 degrees.( In today's world, kids don't even have to go to school when it gets that cold). Otherwise, you were required to wear dresses under wool snow pants - - - pants like the little brother, Randy, wore in the movie A CHRISTMAS STORY. The only problem with wearing cotton dresses and wool snow pants was, you had to stuff the skirt of your dress down inside the snow pants because there were suspenders holding them up. By the time you got to school, you were a rumpled, crumpled mess. But then, so was every other girl. I don't recall if we, as Kindergartners, were even required to bring school supplies ie; box of crayons, notebooks, ruler, Kleenix. Nowadays, it's about a forty-dollar bill per kid to fix them up with all the crap that is required to start the school year. Then there are the high school years, with the expensive calculators, etc. Heaven help those families who have several kids to send off. NOTE: When my kids were completely out of school, I happened to clean out some of my drawers in my home office desk, and found an overabundance of rulers, colored pencils, protractors, compasses, pencils, pens, and all the other little essentials that were purchased every year when we went school supply shopping. Evidently, the kids felt they needed "fresh" supplies to start off the new school year!
My Kindergarten teacher was Mrs. Earle. At the end of the school year she told all of us little kids that she and her husband were moving away to a town called Guttenberg. I thought that sounded like a disgusting place.
So, all you parents sending your kids off to school this year, remember the quote for today:
IT'S TIME. LET GO. (IT WILL BE OKAY)
GOD BLESS YOU ALL (AND HEAVEN HELP OUR EDUCATORS!)