Day 16 – Show the Kids your Yearbook

Prepare yourself. This is gonna be a feast for the eyes.

I took the day off yesterday from my 31 Day Blogging Challenge (eh, we all knew I’d never make it).

But that has given you a full 24 hours to cleanse your system in preparation for this day.

Welcome to ThrowBack Thursday: ’80s Yearbook Edition.

Here’s your first free sample:


I’m the slope-shouldered dork with the Forenza V-neck and painfully short haircut. One word: WHY?

For Day 16 of my 31 Days of Fun/Funny/Funtastic Stuff for Kids, I say let’s dust off our old yearbooks. And let’s collectively horrify our children with our mullet hair/gold chains/Jordache jeans of yesteryear. They need to know – nay, SEE – what we went through with their own eyes so they won’t make the same mistakes we did.

And oh yeah, so they can mock us.


Bill’s senior pictures from Western Tennessee are mind-blowingly awesome. I cannot get enough of the red feathery things and matching bow ties. (In case you need help spotting my c.1988 husband, he’s the mullet-free white guy. There’s only one.) 

Let’s show them what passed for “Best Dressed” in our day.


 I’m sure these are dear precious people. But how did Bill’s senior class collectively agree that a plaid-on-plaid suit (with sock tie) and matching Gunne Sax dresses represented their most fashion-forward? It was a different time. One with much more fabric. Not all of it matching.

Make your children look at you in that band uniform and know: This is my heritage. This awesomeness is where I come from.


Nothing screams “COOL” like being a 6 ft. tall girl in a toy soldier uniform. Topped with a 2 ft. tall fuzzy hat. In 6 inch thick Hushpuppy shoes. Banging together very large and very loud CYMBALS. I was a LOT to take in.

Let your children enter that world with you…back to Ye Olde 20th Century, where we churned our own margarine and communicated with the outside world by CB radio and wore leg-warmers to survive the harsh prairie winters.

You may need to translate and/or screen some of the 1980s yearbook lingo. (Apparently “Raising Hell” was very much encouraged at my junior high.)


There are many many versions to choose from. This one means, “Raise Hell All Summer.” I’m sure I failed utterly to do so.


Okay, so here I’m supposed to “Raise Hell OVER Summer.” So maybe just one episode of hell-raising would suffice?


Hmmm…this one suggests that I “Raise Hell THIS Summer.” I guess that got me off the hook for any future summers. That’s a relief.

There’s also higher math that may need to be explained. (This is not the way they do things in the Common Core.)


This math is confusing. I’m apparently really sweet (like, to a memorable degree) but I still have more hell-raising to do?


Even with all the hell-raising, there are apparently limits. And I was in the Students Against Drunk Driving Club, so there’s that. (That was an actual thing in 1989).

Be sure to introduce your kids to the teachers and staff who shaped the person you would become.

Like our Lunch Room Ladies.


Especially the giant one with the mustache.

Your yearbook is a teaching tool, my friends, for giving the next generation a window into the past.

To see what the ancients wore (mostly puffy sleeves).

To better understand how they communicated with one another (by corded phone and mix tape).

To catch a glimpse of what daily life was like (we were very big on balloon arches).


Sharing our yearbooks with our children is a vital tool for passing along the proud oral tradition of our family histories – as we tell tales of courage and perseverance (like how Bill survived having his sweater set on fire by some girl playing with matches in class). These are the stories they will one day tell their children.

May we all reflect on our yearbooks of days gone by, learn from the past, and guide our children into a better tomorrow.

A tomorrow where there is no more hate.

No more fear.

And (please Lord), no more perms.