Sarah Cahalan | August 13, 2019
I have a confession to make.
Growing up, I never once had a summer job — at least not of the paid variety. From the first time that my peers began taking shifts at the ice cream parlor or lifeguarding at the city pool, my parents made it clear that I had only one job to do: Get As.
During the school year, this meant a relentless pursuit of homework, with occasional breaks for the 19 (yes, 19) extracurricular activities on my resume. In the summer, all of the homework and most of the clubs went on hiatus, but that didn’t spell respite from the drive. Oh, no. Summer was scrapbook season.
Living as we did in rural Indiana, it was decreed very early that my sister and I would join 4-H. Most people associate the youth organization with livestock showing, but I had neither the space nor the inclination to work with animals. Instead, I committed myself to what my club, without a trace of irony, called “non-walking projects.” Non-walking projects — duh — referred to those pursuits that, unlike the livestock events, featured no final product that could get up and stroll around the fair. The most famous (and most popular) are homemaking tasks, like baking and sewing, that sprang up in 4-H’s early days to give girls something to do while their brothers showed steer. But those didn’t interest me either.
I wanted to scrapbook.
Read more here.