Those three words just send chills down my spine! When I was a child, our school year went from the Tuesday after Labor Day through the Friday before Memorial Day. Is it just me, or have school years gotten longer and longer with the passing of time?
Back to school for me meant Mom would start sewing school clothes in fall colors so that we would be “up to the mark.” My sister and I always had beautiful handmade clothes and enjoyed wearing Mom’s creations. We got the requisite pair of back-to-school shoes that usually meant leather of some sort and an accompanying book satchel—no backpack.
Still, returning to the classroom meant surrendering the freedom of playing in the backyard to being captive inside the school. We had to resume the responsibility of keeping up with lunch and milk money. Kids today can’t relate to that as they have cards to scan when they pay for lunch. They don’t have the “take it or leave it” plate lunch but rather have choices. We all wanted the plate lunch because of the lunchroom rolls. Is there anything better than those delightful yeast rolls? There was always one lady that made them every day. It was such an outstanding treat.
I have watched with great intrigue as Hays and Amelia get ready for school. Hays has the backpack, jeans, and athletic shirts on his mind. I am sewing for Amelia as I feel I must carry on the back-to-school dress tradition for her as my mother did for me. This year’s dress is blue with yellow polka dots complete with her monogram (of course).
I have vivid memories of my early days of school. The first day was the high-stress day as your classmates were revealed. I actually don’t remember knowing who my teacher was until the first day, when you found your name on the list outside someone’s door. When the desk assignments were made, I always knew that I would be strategically placed at the back of the room—a place reserved for the tall people.
It was not uncommon for me to come home the first day with staples in the hem of my dress, having to self-repair an accident on the playground. Mom always made it right again, bless her heart. School lunches were very predictable. From the fish sticks to the gingerbread with lemon sauce, some things never changed. But after the first week, the order was established and life went on.
I have to ask—does anyone have the school lunchroom roll recipe? I would love to have it.
What are your memories of school days?