Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Final Chapter

Nothing will stop Lindsay and I from completing our project, not even a four hour long AP test Friday morning.  When the test was over, Lindsay's mom picked us up and we headed along our usual route to Demille Elementary School.  The only difference was now the sun was high in the sky, instead of yawning awake.  And there was no time constraint rushing us back to make it for second period.

Selecting three students was easy, it was down to our last and final three.  The group let their imaginations fly- a coconut tree jungle, traveling in a time machine to a basketball game, a bowling ball landing on the cat's head.

After our work was done at the school, Lindsay and I grabbed some lunch and headed to her house where the real work began.  The kindergartners had taken care of the body pages, leaving the beginning and end up to us.  Along with the deal came drawing pictures, kindergarten style.  Maybe it was because we were comparing our artwork to that of six year olds, but I was impressed by what Lindsay and I could create with a couple packs of markers and a large tub of crayons.

That Friday I stayed at Lindsay's house until 11:00 P.M.  With Spotify and YouTube cheering us on, we managed to type up all the pages and scan all the illustrations, and then match the two together.  But the work had just begun.

I returned to what had begun to feel like my second home the next morning.  We made some adjustments, printed out a few pages, and made more adjustments.  After some experimentation, we figured out how to print the books continually and double sided and make the front and back cover on cardstock.

Just like Henry Ford managed back in the day, we formed an assembly line- printing, counting, hole-punching, binding, trimming.  I must pay special tribute to the binding machine we borrowed from the elementary school.  I would be a teacher just to use that lovely piece of machinery.

Assembling the first copy had a sentimental feeling.  All nine kindergarten visits compiled into thirty colorful pages.  It was a proud moment.

24 copies were made- one for each student, one for Mr. Ziebarth, and one for each of us to treasure.

Today my grandmother joined my family for a Mother's Day dinner of mashed potatoes and turkey burgers.  We got on the subject of school projects and I remembered our book.  I explained to my grandma our project and she read every page, amazed.  This DIY project has brought me so many rich rewards, on so many levels.

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