Off to Get School Supplies

Because Athena’s school starts a week from today. As someone who always had school start in September, this seems more than a little unfair to me. Be that as it may.

How’s your Monday?

48 Comments on “Off to Get School Supplies”

  1. Just went to new parent orientation at my daughter’s Pre-Kindergarten. Birds leaving the nest, and all that.

  2. So far so good. Lazy day, since I’m still recovering from vacation last week at Pennsic. Need to tackle laundry and the lawn, but don’t need to get it all done today.

  3. I hear ya, school starts waaaaay too early in some parts of the country. I’ve got a 15 year old that started High School on 8/4 this year. What ever happened to lazy summers for kids?

  4. I see, so when people say “they get younger every year”, they mean “over about 20-30 years, the average age of kids starting school drops by about 2 weeks because school starts earlier”.

    The things we learn as we age.

    (My Monday is mostly watching people call me names because I didn’t support a badly-written hatchet job. Whee, I’m famous!)

  5. Me? I’m sat on the terrace of a beautiful cottage in The Algarve, Portugal with views from Faro to Portimao.

    I am a Science teacher so why am I not going back to school? Simple – I had a stress/anxiety related breakdown 9 months ago and I am recovering from the subsequent depression. Missing school, though: I love teaching my subject . . .

  6. My Monday has been good! I am now the happy owner of tickets for Benedict Cumberbatch’s Hamlet in August 2015; according to Viagago this is the most sought after theatrical production in history, so I’m lucky that I live 5 minutes from the theatre and was therefore able to physically get in the line once I’d seen the numbers queuing online for tickets.

    Fortunately the Barbican has no problems with selling things people want to buy; I shudder to think what Amazon would have done with the rights…

  7. Heh, school starts Wednesday, for my 8th grade geek girl. She’s actually looking forward to it. Last year, found a nice circle of friends to hang with. Since almost no one is needed “down on the farm” anymore, I’d be glad with a 180 days of school spread evenly around the year; have nice 3 weeks off every quarter or so.

    For myself, have developed late summer allergies, along with my spring Juniper Fever stuff. Having an increasingly paranoid immune system SUCKS! Still, I’m at work and the Benadryl is just finnnnnnne!

  8. My boss just had a come-to-Jesus conversation with me about how I need to give this job “everything I have” if I want to succeed. I woke up at 4:15 to get to work at 6:30. I have two kids under three, and I haven’t seen them today. The question of quitting just changed from “if” to “when.”

    … so, John, if you could just send me the secret handbook that tells me how to support my family on my writing, I’d really appreciate it. I’ll totally get you back for postage and stuff.

    (I actually appreciate the conversation; she wasn’t at all unkind, she’s genuinely concerned that I’m not working at the pace required to make it in academia. And she’d know better than I would. I’d much rather hear this a few weeks into the job than have it fester for months or years. But appreciating my boss’s forthrightness is not the same thing as wanting to work on the terms she’s forthrightly set out.)

  9. I’m recovering from last night’s Bluejays game. I’m a casual fan at best (reading is my sport!), but I don’t mind watching Canada’s Team™.

    I sat down next to my uncle at the top of the 8th, planning to watch some stuff saved on the DVR when the game ended. Four hours and ELEVEN innings later, I went directly to bed.

  10. Had a pretty decent Monday. We got to one museum we both really wanted to see, spent about twice as long there as the guidebooks said to expect to spend (typical for us), managed to both lose and then find each other in the museum, but had no problems navigating the tube and finding our way around the city. The London tube hasn’t changed much in the four decades since I was last here, but I sure have a much greater understanding of its inaccessibility with my creaky joints than I did last time.

    As for returning to school in August, the part of Texas where we lived in the 80s and 90s always resumed school in mid-August, which our kids hated. Of course, when we moved to where we lived now, they were appalled to have to continue going to school into the first ten days of June instead of getting out in mid-May as they did in Texas, so it does all kind of even out.

  11. Andrew Carmichael Post, my son whom you’ve spoken with, was unable, yesterday, to get my terabyte drive out of the PC with fried motherboard into a new PC, nor do I have his old PC, so I am computer-less, and am emailing right now from the Altadena Public Library. I Have No PC and I Must Novel!

  12. Girding my loins to face an adult who bullied my kid. That they think they were being reasonable and “love” my kids makes it extra fun. For certain measures of fun.

  13. Here in 100+ degree Chandler, Arizona, school started three weeks ago. I agree school should start the day after Labor Day.

  14. Over here school start is today, so I followed my grandson to first day at a new school.
    Usually he likes school, but this time he thought it sucked!
    Probably something to do with he only got back from a three week vacation to Canada to visit family a couple of days ago. Together with the fact that his cousins over there still had week’s more vacation to go, and ragged him unmerciful about it.

  15. Grew up in Northeast Ohio, and always appreciated starting school a week or so before Labor Day: It meant we started with a couple four-day weeks to kind of ease into the year, and we were almost always out right after Memorial Day. The one year we started after Labor Day, most of us hated it when we were still in school halfway through the following June.

    My Monday is bright since it kicks off a short work week leading into Gen Con. (2 days, 13 hours, 27 minutes until I hit the road. Give or take.)

  16. If not on a yearly schedule, school should start the Tuesday after Labor Day here in the US. The best summer memories seem to made during that last, wonderful 3-day weekend. The axe of impending school brings out the frantic best, I think.

  17. My daughter started middle school today, and yes, my wife and I are both taken aback at how summer has gotten whittled away since we were that age. It hasn’t, really — same number of days and all, but longer breaks during the school year. But there was always something a little magical about almost three full months off.

  18. School supplies! When I was a kid, I waited for school supplies day like most kids waited for Christmas. I loved getting new textbooks, notebooks, pens, pencils, and all the other various and sundry. Actually, the “when I was a kid” isn’t quite true. I was the same way in high school and college. And I’m still that way today. I work for a university, and one of our perks is that we get to take one free class per semester. I was in Staples last week getting my supplies for the class I’m taking this semester, and I got just as giddy then as I did when I was ten. And I’m 45 years old.

  19. Do they start so early just so there’s no reason to hesitate when declaring a snow day during the school year?

  20. My daughter starts 8th grade the day after tomorrow. But they get a full week off for Thanksgiving instead of two days, four weeks off for Winter break instead of two weeks, and two weeks off for Spring break instead of one. Oh, and all Mondays are early release days.

  21. My kid’s school (kindergarten) started August 1. What? You say that was a Friday? Why, so it was. Though to be honest, I was 70% expecting the school district to call a furlough day at the last minute (they did it last year) and postpone Day 1 to the following Monday.

  22. Bought a new violin :). I gave my old violin to my youngest niece, a much better player than me (Grade 6 at 14 …), then found I missed playing so have just got a new one. I’ll never be particularly good but so what.

  23. As a cross-country parent who gets “half the summer” with my kids, the creeping up of the Fall start date stinks. They also cut down the Christmas and Spring breaks (the other times I can have my kids come). All this in favor or random 3 day weekends scattered through the year, which I am sure are lovely and all but don’t really help me much.

    I’m sure parents who need to pay for daycare on the random Fridays off are more annoyed than I am. :)

  24. 18 August? Wow, way early. My son starts high school on 3 September here in the Northwest. Remember, get the good erasers, the soft white ones. Okay?

    As for my Monday, so far so good. Supposed to be 80+ today and I’ll be happy to leaving my below-ground, air-conditioned setting as soon at 1430 comes around.

    I remember going to get school supplies as a kid. It was a combination of excitement that continually collided with the realization I was going back to school. Going to buy stuff, going back to school. Buy stuff, school. That was how it went in my head. It almost felt like the universe was betraying me. But, I digress.

  25. I don’t get the 180 days a year thing, but that does tend to explain why Americans are starting to fall so far behind the rest of the developed world. Since the kids were in daycare about 250 days a year, and learning each day, why reduce it to 180 just because they get older?

  26. I’m doing good. Started an awesome new job recently and am very happy about it.

    Spouse The Teacher is even more annoyed by school-year-creep than most students I know. I wish we lived in a place where the shortened summer came with longer breaks elsewhere–here they just keep shortening holidays. I had to issue a moratorium on “when is it going to start snowing” talk before the summer even began.

    I wish Athena happy school-supply-acquisition.

  27. Jack Lint: Do they start so early just so there’s no reason to hesitate when declaring a snow day during the school year?

    That’s part of it, I’m sure. I’ve noticed that this trend toward starting earlier and earlier in August (here in Ohio, at least) seems to date back to the late 70s, just after we had two record cold winters, and schools were using too many snow days.

  28. Not good. We had my mother’s cremation today. She was 87 and not in very good health the last couple of years but still – well, you know.

  29. There are several reasons the school calendar is messed up compared to ‘back when it was done right & nobody complained’. One is the mentioned snow days, it was literally a cold day in hell out here on the frozen tundra when school was closed. I can clearly remember 3 days one week when the wind chill was -40 or lower and there was never a question that school was going forward (as a city kid that meant a 12 block walk each way, no bus rides). Plus various groups have carved out additional days now that did not exist in the past. My wife works in the local elementary school and they ended before June this past year because they didn’t use up all their days.

    This is just how it is now. Since planting and harvesting is not the family business it was a hundred years ago sticking to that schedule really does not make as much sense.

  30. Damn… You too? Everyone keeps reminding me that school starts in a week. How depressing….

  31. I’m an advocate for schools running all year, for staff, anyway, so “early” summer starts don’t really bother me.

    I’m getting read to teach tomorrow (a professional course I title “How to not run trains into each other”) which is part of my job I really enjoy. So Monday, yay!

  32. We just had the tax-free weekend in Texas, where school supplies and clothes and the like are free of sales tax, so the stores were jammed. I hadn’t planned to do any shopping, but I did wind up in the local Walmart picking up a prescription. Big crowds….

  33. Mondays are always pretty good since I retired in January. I sit and have my morning coffee and enjoy the traffic reports on the radio.

  34. It’s too hot to work in the recording studio, so I’m breaking out the portable room air conditioner for the one day a year we need it (they’re only _mostly_ useless) and thinking about how Yahoo! broke all mailing lists in the world. We have a workaround, but the underlying problem – the hideously broken DMARC system – still just breaks every damn thing.

    (I ranted about that – and posted our Mailman listserver code changes, if anybody wants them – here: )

  35. I’m annoyed at the earlier starting for school because I live in a hot area with a lot of schools that are older, which means they have less-than-adequate A/C. August is hotter than June, and it’s better to have the days that are too hot to think at the end of the year IMO. In fact, they had to move the State Fair from August to July because of the schools.

    I’m also annoyed because my little girl’s first day of kindergarten is going to land on the first day of Worldcon next year. I’m not capable of bi-location. Worldcon is set earlier so as not to interfere with things like this as easily; it’s not their fault. But basically I get to be Bad Parent. Gee, thanks, schools.

    (There is one year-round schedule that I like—November, March, and six weeks of late summer off, plus a bit around Christmas. Unfortunately, there are also a couple of other rotations that just seem obnoxious, and around here there’s no guarantee that all of your kids will end up on the same rotation, which is even more obnoxious.)

  36. When I was a kid in Delaware, school started the Wednesday after Labor Day. High school football team kids had practice starting a couple of weeks before that.
    When I went to college, school started ON Labor Day; building staff and cafeteria workers had the day off, but students and professors didn’t. (And Christmas break ran until late January, because they didn’t want to run the heating system in the coldest part of winter, which typically hit 20 below for a few weeks, walking uphill both ways in the snow to get to the keypunches for computer access, yadda yadda.) The only times school got closed for bad weather were when there was enough ice on the roads that the professors couldn’t get there; students were presumed to be able to walk or take the bus.

    My sister’s kids in Hawaii have a year-round school schedule that’s split into four quarters, with reasonably long breaks between them. It makes some sense, since in their climate they don’t have to take the summer off to work on the family farm or get days off in the winter for snow.

    As far as baby birds leaving the nest, I don’t have kids, but most years we have a family of doves nesting in a light fixture on the porch, and this year’s pair of young birds just took off this weekend.

  37. Enjoying my last week of vacation, then back to work next week. This will be my 24th year as a teacher (8th grade LA/U.S. History). Can’t believe the time has gone by that fast.

  38. Turned my phone back on after my quarterly doctor’s appointment to find a voice mail from another agency asking if I was still interested in the job that I had applied for the previous month. Said “Absolutely!” and scored an interview for Friday.

    Oh and my 13 year old starts on the 27th. Yay for me, boo for her, although she loves school.

  39. My offspring starts her senior year of HS after Labor Day. Getting those college applications together. Yearg.

  40. I always kid my daughter the first time I see back to school sales – I think they start in June now.

    Costco has halloween costumes already.

  41. We started school after Labour Day, but I always start to feel like it’s time to stock up on pencils and notebooks and start something *new* beginning in August. Which means that this Monday was fabulous for me: I signed an employment offer for a new job that I think is going to be really awesome and that will mean working with a lot of lovely people (and finally got to submit the resignation letter that I’ve been mentally composing since December).

  42. Our school district calendar ended super-late, for a very short summer. June 25 took forever to come, and now it is almost over. Kids only get a few summer vacations in their lives; they shouldn’t be short-changed.

    Sympathy to Athena.

  43. You could always have the Australian version – our school year runs pretty much in parallel with the calendar year. Generally these days the school year starts the Monday after Australia Day (January 26) and ends around 18 December (the week before Christmas) for kids in compulsory schooling. Final two years of school (the non-compulsory years) run until about the end of November; universities tend to run from about late February until early June, then late July to late November.

    Admittedly, we don’t have that many “snow days” (you really have to be living in a rather select few areas of Australia for snow to be a regular problem in winter), but the first quarter of the year (between Australia day and ANZAC Day – so January 26 to April 25) is cluttered up with public holidays and long weekends. Things slow down after that.

    We usually have big stationery sales around the end of June, in time for the “new Financial Year”, which starts on July 1 every year (yeah, we do our financial years running from July 1 to June 30, 6 months out of synch with the calendar). These are usually aimed at businesses, but the big stationery suppliers and department stores also like to suggest “school supplies top-ups” at the same time. The current retail festivity is the Festival of the Incoming Summer Stock, which means even though it’s the middle of winter, it is the best time of the year to be trying to buy swimwear.

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