Excuse me, are you listening? 7-18
Sunday, September 28, 2008

Dear Readers,

Off to school again for the 1st and 2nd grade children in the Risper household.  I think that summer dragged on this year and I was starting to feel it in my bones.  Labor Day marks less labor for me. It seems like I work harder in the summer.  I think that children get lazy and restless.  They stay up late and if you have the leisure, you don't have to worry about them getting up to do anything.  Early morning cartoons and late night features become a major part of their lives and then Labor Day hits.

Labor Day for me is a “Thank Goodness These Kids Are Going Back To School Tomorrow” celebration.

I spent Labor Day working on the paper and the health symposium.  I took a break and went to the Lansing Mall for lunch.  My lunch partner and I were astounded that there were so many people at the mall shopping.  I find that it's so last minute to do school shopping the day before school but I guess by the look of the full parking lot it was necessary for many.

I woke up early in the morning to prepare myself for “The Departure of the Little People”.  Uniforms were neatly press and waiting to have jelly or some other miscellaneous item spilled on it before leaving the house.  I figured that this year I would get them dressed after brushing their teeth and eating breakfast.  I was going to be ahead of the game.

Thank goodness my children's school, Shabazz Academy, sent a list of school supplies before school started.  I appreciate that because there's so much to put into their knapsacks during the first week that you need a head start.

I don't recall having tissue and antibacterial wipes on my school supplies list when I was younger.

Now wearing new clothes to school on the first day isn’t that important.

I remember how proud I felt with my new clothes on.  My mother made most of our clothing and she could sew like a fashion designer.  After a while, I wanted to be like everyone else and would beg for store bought clothes.  My mother was never hurt by my pleas but she would have the “Do I look like I'm made out of money?” look on her face or the “Would you rather go to school naked?” look.

Oh, I love the white shirt and black pants uniform that my children wear at Shabazz Academy.  It keeps things very simple and the children don't know any different.

As bus rolled up to the front of the house, I looked out the window at the little heads of  other parents “Little People”.  They looked exhausted already, still intoxicated by the lingering scent of summer.  I'm sure that as soon as they come into contact with the other children they will wake up.

I rush to get my camera as my husband is helping the youngest with his knapsack.

They rush out to the bus and I command them to turn around for their annual picture.

“Smile Amir,  Anissa move your hand out of the way,  stop doing that, thank you for waiting Ms. Bowers,  be good in school….”

Amir turned around one last time and there it was a spot on his crisp white shirt.  I just smiled and went inside and thought, “I have to come up with a new plan to keep shirts spotless before 7:30 a.m.”

Tomorrow is another day.


Rina Risper


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