The journal/diary entries below were written in my youthful handwriting and found jammed inside Journal 1. I’m in 8th grade in the entries below.
Monday, 7 Dec. 1987: I finished typing my letter in C.S. [Communications Studies class]. I put the antlers on my reindeer [a crafting project in Home Ec class, I think] after school and Dad took me into Rochelle to the library to drop off books and to Walmart. Our library card has expired. I stayed up late doing lit.
Tues., 8 Dec. 1987: We redid our transaction sheets as we got a letter from Dekalb [I’m not sure what that means]. I finished my cross-stitch reindeer today. Billy Cornett and I worked at concessions after school. [Brother] Nace saw the game and he helped us with the pop.
Weds., 9 Dec. 1987: We finished watching a movie in C.S. and the periods were only 30 minutes long today because we got our early, 1:30, for conferences. Nace didn’t get out early. [Brother] Dan hasn’t gone to school for 2 days now. I cleaned the manure out of my rabbit’s cage. We watched 2 Christmas specials on TV, “Frosty” and “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.”
Thurs., 10 Dec. 1987: [Band teacher] Mr. Sisler told us today that we might play to the grade schools on next Friday. In Algebra, I learned that Carin is moving next year. In Home Ec., I put the lace on my ornament. I stayed in at lunch and talked about Animal Farm [a book I was reading as independent project apart from the rest of the class]. We took a hard test in P.E. I finished the back to my ornament after school. Dad and I made a nest box for my rabbit. I got my homework done early, but I stayed up late double-checking it.
Fri., 11 Dec. 1987: I was called out of Band and Algebra for activity pictures. I had my picture taken for Band, Stage band, soccer, and concessions. I finished my ornament in Home Ec. I took an exam in C.S. on Animal Farm. I went to Krista’s house for a party at about 7:00. First the kids threw cards, then they drank liquor and went in the closet. Mark and I didn’t drink or anything, we played tapes and talked. [Reading this in 2019, I’m contrasting it to my memory of that night, feeling awkward and wanting to leave and not wanting to be doing any of what the other kids were doing. I seem to have understated my reaction in the journal entry above, or to have remembered it as being much more uncomfortable than I wrote at the time.]
Sat., 12 Dec. 1987: I got up late and I didn’t do my rabbit chores until 3:00. We cleaned house and then went to Rochelle. Dan went to practice and Nace, Mom and I went to Spurgeon’s [clothing store], RW Liquidators, and Aunt Mary’s [Yarn, I think]. We saw a very neat little tree made from tiny items. It cost $194.00. We went back and got Dan and we returned to Aunt Mary’s, where I bought four counted cross-stick kits and the others bought things, too. We bought our tree from Ron’s in Ashton. Then the boys, Mom and I went to Byron. I bought the Happy Holidays cassette. We had pot pies for supper after Mom and Dad went to a party. I tried to put on the lights, but I didn’t do so well. Mom and Dad came home early, mom felt sick.
Sun., 13 Dec. 1987: We decorated the tree this morning. Mom put up the lights. We used four strings on the tree. We melted a hole in the rug from a frosted bulb when we were testing the string it was on. I started sewing on my cube [for Home Ec.]. After lunch, Mom and Dad went Christmas shopping, and they took Nace and Dan to [grandma] Phoebe’s. I was a little scared by myself because I heard wood creaking. I finished my cube tonight. Mom and Dad and the boys came around 6:00. I lit up the tree tonight. Nace said that my rabbit was getting excited and making a next.
Mon., 14 Dec. 1987: My rabbit did have rabbits today! I saw at least two during evening chores. They’re hairless! We took a text in Algebra, we are going to finish it tomorrow. I worked on my cube in Home Ec. It is predicted to snow tonight.
Tues., 15 Dec. 1987: I awoke at 6:15 to the crack of lightning and boom of thunder. The storm thundered and lightninged at least a dozen times more. I look at my clock. I read 4:40. The power had gone off and didn’t return until around 10:00. We got 11.4 inches of snow during last night and today. Schools were called off and Dad got off work too. There was a lot of snow in the rabbit part of the barn. There were three lambings today. The second lamb was found by Dad and we all had to revive him. Dad and I shoveled snow. We watched Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer tonight.