Back to School With a Trapper Keeper!

No, this isn’t a sponsored post. I’m just a school-supply nerd with vivid memories of my favorites!

One of the Mama Kat writing prompts this week involves sharing a Back to School memory. I have a lot of good memories, because I always loved school. One from my own childhood is pretty special, though. It’s a great example of how well my Mom knew me and how much she sacrificed for her kids.

Anybody remember the first year of the Trapper Keeper? I had to look it up, but it was 1978, so I would have been in the third grade. I think that was the year I got glasses and had my hair cut short. NOT a good look for me.

This was the original Trapper Keeper. There were commercials constantly as summer waned. A Trapper Keeper could hold all your folders securely, so you didn’t have to worry about leaving homework behind. And the folders (purchased separately, of course) could be organizer by color, would be secured by the three plastic rings into the Keeper, and were designed so papers could only be removed in one direction. With the Trapper Keeper’s velcro flap this ensured the safety of all that homework.

This was the Holy Grail of Back to School supplies. I practically drooled at the though of all that organization and security at the tips of my bitten nails. But I never asked for it. I knew we didn’t have much money – but neither did most of the kids at my little country elementary school. And there was always my brother. He was three that year, but I think the first words he ever spoke were, “I want”. So I just kept my mouth shut. If I got crayons and pencils and notebooks for school he’d insist on having the same thing and more.

But Mom knew, somehow, how much I wanted it, and the Trapper Keeper and “sold separately” folders went in the cart. I was a proud kid walking into school that first day, and I think that binder lasted two years!

Want to hear the weird thing? They still sell them!

This is what I’d buy today. Purple with a touch of gold. And I’d decorate it with the symbol of “the artist formerly known as Prince”. And believe it or not this sucker is still over priced! Ten dollars for a plastic binder at Target. And the folders are still sold separately. Thanks, Mom!!

 

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7 thoughts on “Back to School With a Trapper Keeper!”

    1. Thanks, Dulcie! Yeah, my mom is awesome. I love her dearly, especially after seeing her “work the crowd” at my grandmother’s funeral (she was 99.) Even grieving as she was, she greeted everyone with a smile and a teasing insult. Still not sure if this is a family thing or a MOM thing, since she was a 90-pound hummingbird hovering everywhere and remembering everyone’s names and how they were related. After about thirty minutes of being introduced to people who said they knew me I hid in a chair behind a Peace Lily. From now on I’m always sending Peace Lilies to funeral homes. They really can provide a bit of respite for those of us who just need a little break from the onslaught.

  1. I wanted one so badly, but when you were one of ten kids your parents had to buy school supplies for Trapper Keepers were a pipe dream! But I would have thought you were really cool!

    1. I worked many years with a doctor who was the eldest of ten kids. She has five herself and would have had more except that she AND the baby nearly died with number five. She was so stoic one of her patients had to insist she go to the hospital! Being one of ten made her the compassionate and practical person she was, though – kudos to you!

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