back to school

This week the children in my area go back to school.

Of course that brings back memories of my own school days. Kindergarten, when we all had bird stickers to identify the cubby where we hung up our jackets and placed our lunch boxes. (My bird was a Baltimore Oriole.) Lunch boxes, perhaps with Barbie or Mickey Mouse, their thermoses and the way they smelled. The daily peanut butter & jelly sandwiches.

first grade
Me in first grade.

First grade and learning to read. “See Tag. See Tag Run. Run, Tag, Run.” I already knew how to read and zipped through that book in a flash. My teacher didn’t know what to do with me. It remained that way all through grade school.

Second grade, we’d moved cross-country, so a new school. Sixth grade, another new school. High school, going from our small K-8 to the very large school “in town.” College, first a community college, then away in the dorms, then at a local university at night while I worked full-time.

I miss it and I don’t. I miss the special day of shopping with my mom when I was in grade school, picking out patterns for dresses she’d make, choosing the new shoes I’d have to break in. When I was in college, seeing the syllabus and believing this semester everything would be done on time, the books read, the tests prepared for, the papers written, no last minute panic.

Yes. I have those dreams where I didn’t go to school all semester and now it’s finals. More often, I have dreams that no matter how hard I try, I cannot succeed in college. At some point in my sleepy state I stop getting frustrated and say, “why am I doing this? I already have a degree.”

(Probably a good thing I have no training in psychology or I’d be analyzing myself into a frenzy trying to figure that one out. The broad meaning might be clear to experts, but the application in my life would probably elude me.)

crayons lightstock_142210_medium_user_7579580 lr
© Alex Workman – Lightstock

I still like learning. I like being challenged. I take online courses, both credit and non-credit, whenever I can. I’d like to brush up on my French, or more practically, learn Spanish.

If I lived closer to my mom, I’d take her shopping for some new shoes and go to lunch like we used to when I was little. Those outings meant a lot to her, and a trip like that would do my heart some good.

21 Replies to “back to school”

    1. Something about plaid and school, right? My mom probably made that for me. She made most of my clothes until I was in sixth grade and they didn’t make us wear dresses to school anymore!

      Liked by 2 people

  1. This post reflects the same things I feel around the time school starts again. When I went to Wal-Mart the other day, there were parents getting lunch food and school supplies. Watching it brought back all kinds of memories when I would go out with my parents right before school started up again.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Something about those back-to-school traditions. I suppose it’s not surprising they’d be so meaningful, but it’s not the kind of tradition you often hear people celebrating — yet here we are, I’ve gotten a couple of responses that really make me think even harder about what I just wrote!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Belinda, I miss it all. My mom made my dresses all through grade school. She also made the few slacks I was allowed to wear if the temperature was low enough. I remember Mary Poppins and Snow White Lunch Boxes.
    Then when Bobby was old enough, I loved going through the process with him. Dukes Of Hazzard and GI Joe. Mom was knitting sweaters then so every year we would both get one. I taught at the same school. Every year on picture taking day. We had our separate photos taken but , we also had one taken pf the 2 of us.
    I miss all of it now. Teaching….Having kids around. Bobby.
    Thanks for sharing your memories.
    Hugs Sarah

    Liked by 1 person

        1. No, it my school it was Tag. 😉 I’ve tried looking these books up since that time because even then I knew they were different from the usual Dick & Jane series, but I’ve only found enough mention of them to know they existed — a Facebook page with nominal information, that sort of thing. Tag was a cocker spaniel, I think, but I wouldn’t swear to that.


            1. I just got back on the Internet to find some more info, and again I came across that frustrating Facebook page. It exists, but with no info! More recently there’s a been “Tag” reading program for beginning readers so when I enter ‘Tag reader” and that sort of thing, that’s what comes up. But, I know it was Tag. I remember getting the same sort of doubtful questions when I entered second grade, because they had had altogether different readers than Tag or Spot! Oh well!


              1. Thanks, I’m pausing the search for now but it may be the Jack & Janet Reading for Meaning series. I just can’t find any mention of Tag.


  3. I’ve just been thinking of some of these things too! I’ve been remembering what it was like to start the year with new notebooks, new pencils, pencil sharpener, eraser, ruler, etc. and when I was older I also brought the tools needed for geometry. I remember having such a feeling of anticipation on th first day of class each year.

    Liked by 1 person

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