Out and About – Week of August 14th

If you have school-age children, it’s time to start shopping for those school supplies. I’m referring to grade school supplies, like pencils, crayons, notebook paper and three-ring binders. They’re not cheap, so I suggest you check out the ever popular “dollar” stores, and it’s not too early to start shopping now to avoid the crowds.
I remember my mom buying me a new box of crayons for school. They were always nice, because they had pointy tips. I used to envy those friends who were lucky enough to have the crayon boxes with about forty crayons inside. I still enjoy shopping in a stationary store, and I still enjoy coloring in a coloring book.
As a parent remember this. A child is someone who passes through your life and then disappears into an adult.
This is that time of the year when parents should make sure their child’s shot record is up-to-date. Each school student should get into the habit of washing their hands frequently with soap and warm water. You have no idea how many germs are shared in a classroom. Proper hygiene should start at home. Remembering to cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze is a good example.
Some parents will be sending a child off to school for the first time. If your child will be entering kindergarten, be sure to show interest in their day when they come home. As a parent, you know what it was like, but it would be nice to give the impression that they learned something that you weren’t aware of, such as being able to spell a certain word. My grandma and I used to ask each other words to spell. It still amazes me that she spelled the word “school” this way: “s-k-o-o-l”. I now realize that she was smarter than she appeared to be.
There are some moms out there who can hardly wait for school to start. They’ll once again have peace and quiet around the house. That might be a problem, because it will be too quiet.
Back in the day, when families would have supper together and there was no fast-food, we’d sit around the dinner table and tell each other all about our day. You don’t see that much anymore. We are all kept current on what’s going on, thanks to the cell phone. Communicating face-to-face with each other is becoming less frequent and more difficult. When was the last time you had a person-to-person encounter with someone and weren’t interrupted by one or the other’s cell phone ringing?
We recently spent a week camping up at Yankee Springs State Park. We’ve been there before, and by reserving early, we could secure the same spot that we had last year. It’s located about forty yards from the public building, which made it convenient for taking showers, etc. The first shower had just cold water, which means the shower was refreshing, but quick. The next day I discovered that the shower stall I used first was the only one without hot water. The early settlers had it rough.
Having a campfire was a nightly event. A bundle of firewood costs $6.00, and one bundle was perfect for one evening’s fire. Each campsite has its own firepit and a picnic table, which makes it convenient for guests. We had family join us one evening for a campfire, which was very enjoyable.
We were planning to take one of our cats along for the experience, but they both declined the offer. Evidently, they preferred to stay home and fight with each other. We had originally planned to take the more timid of the two. Patches, the timid one, is constantly bullied by Peaches, so we felt she deserved the trip more. After six months, she is still quite reluctant to be picked up and she is extremely skittish.
I’ll share a little more about our camping experience next week.
Getting away from the daily routine is something everyone should do now and then. It’s difficult to take time off and just stay at home. For me, I enjoy getting Out and About, but my thoughts are always on what’s happening back home. Besides, it always gives me something to write about and share with interested readers.
See you Out and About!

Submitted by Norm Stutesman

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