Thursday, August 30

Famous Relations: The Marys

This morning, my friend Sarah sent a tweet:

Indeed, on this day in 1797, my great-great-several-great-something-or-other-by-way-of-her-husband, Mary Shelley was born. My father's father's people (the Shelley folks) are of English and Welsh descent. Somebody, some decades ago, somewhere in Eastern Tennessee did some digging, and realized that we are related to English Romantic poet, Percy Bysshe Shelley- and by extension, his Frankenstein-writing wife, Mary. 
We Shelleys tend to write our novels whilst looking
wistfully off into the middle distance,
wearing fancy little off-the-shoulder numbers.

Thinking about Mary Shelley always leads me around to thinking about Mary Sawyer, my other Famous Mary Relation. You may never have known her last name, but I guarantee you know her. Every person who was ever a kid in America after 1830 knows Mary Sawyer. You probably know her best because of her pet: a little lamb

Mary Had a Little Lamb Statue Part 1 Pictures, Images and Photos
photo credit

My mother's father was a Sawyer from New York. In his thirties, he fell in love with a Southern belle and spent the rest of his days living below the Mason-Dixon line. I have never been north of the Mason-Dixon line (except for a layover once in Cincinnati), but I hear there are Sawyers I'm related to all over New England. Mary Sawyer, whose little lamb so famously followed her to school one day, is one of them.

And, there you have it. My literary and folkloric heritage, wrapped up in nice little Mary packages. 

Friday, August 17

How to Spend Your Time Waiting in the School Pick-up Line

School starts again on Monday. I'm still avoiding the issue as much as possible, despite the new backpacks, supplies, school clothes, and packable lunch foods I spent a million dollars on this. And despite the fact that The Girl and I spent a solid two hours on Tuesday picking out twenty outfits for her to wear to kindergarten. Yeah. Avoiding school. Mentally, at least.

One thing I've been thinking about lately is the pick-up line at school. There's a fine art to the timing of the pick-up line. Our school lets out at 3:10, and I've seen some parents line up at 2:15. No kidding. I, on the other hand, am often leaving my house at 3:07, speeding the 1.5 miles from our casa to the school, then catching the tail-end of the waiting line. It's far more nuanced than that... but those parents parking at 2:15 might have the right idea after all (provided they are picking up all of their children, and don't have a wailing DestructoTot in the backseat).

Because I'm a super helpful kind of gal, I've made a list for you guys about how to spend your time waiting in the school pick-up line. I call it, "How to Spend Your Time Waiting in the School Pick-Up Line." Brilliant, no?

How to Spend Your Time Waiting in the School Pick-Up Line:

1) Watch the sweet baby kindergarten kids careen around the playground, bashing up their knees and noses. But don't use binoculars. Because that's creepy.

2) Read a book.

3) Heck, write a book. This lady did. So did this one. (And so have Sarah Pekkanen and Jodi Piccoult, among tons of others, I'm sure.)

4) Take a nap.

5) Balance your checkbook. (Wait. Are we the only people left with actual checks in actual checkbooks?) 

6) Clean out your earwax, get the gunk out from under your nails, pluck your nose hairs. (Err, nevermind. I don't recommend doing any of those things in the carpool line. Save it for your own home, weirdo.)

7) Rock. Out. I don't know about y'all, but there's not much I love more than a good Rock Out (except, maybe #4 on this list). Our Toyota Camry, grocery-getter, sensible-person-car that it is, has one heck of a speaker system. There is absolutely zero shame in my game when I roll all the windows down and jam to Beyonce or Dave Matthews. There is only a little shame in my game when I roll all the windows up and jam to Tupac or Lil Weezy (Seriously. Windows up. That kind of music is only for grownups. Little kids cannot possibly appreciate "Dear Momma" like I can.)

8) Catch up on Words With Friends. A bazillion points if you can get *pseudoantidisestablishmentarianism.*

9) For real. Take a nap. You deserve it. Those kids are about to get in your car and be ALL UP IN YOUR EARHOLES!

Got any good ideas on what to do in the pick-up line? Lemme know here in the comments or on the ol' facebook!

Disclosure: I was selected for participation in the TWIN community through a program with
Clever Girls Collective. I did not receive any compensation for writing this post, or payment
in exchange for participating. The opinions expressed herein are mine, and do not reflect the
views of the Toyota.