La Familia de Teresa (better known as Cindy)

Recently, I've been reorganizing files and strolling down Memory Lane. I've found a few creative gems along the way, including this masterpiece created by my 7th grade self for Spanish 1:

The assignment was to create a family tree using Hispanic naming conventions. First, I need to explain Teresa. My name is Cindy (Cynthia, technically) and always has been, but in middle school Spanish we were required to select a Spanish name from a list. I chose Teresa one year and Marta the next. I have no idea why. In retrospect, I'm blown away that my teacher, who presumably had 5 periods of 30+ students each, learned not only our actual real names AND our Spanish names, but allowed us to switch Spanish names each year. 

Anyway, back to the family tree. There was no requirement to add portraits; that was my own decision. I'm glad I did. I love seeing how everyone is depicted. My grandma looks spot-on, other than the fact that her eyes were not perched at the top of her skull in real life. But based on how I drew everyone else, that must be a dominant gene. Only my dad and my maternal grandpa have ears. Perhaps that's recessive? 

As part of the assignment, we needed to give ourselves a spouse (which, at 12, none of us already had). Our teacher, Ms. Brooksher, who was obsessed with either Tom Selleck or Burt Reynolds (I can't remember which), told us that we could choose a celebrity to 'marry' (as long as it wasn't Tom or Burt, as she had already claimed him) or make someone up. I made up Peter Zimmerick. 

As you can see, Pete has sandy brown hair and lots of freckles. He and I would go on to have two sons, Richard and Kristopher, each sporting their own freckles. I don't remember how much, if any, thought I put into my make-believe spouse's and kids' names and appearances. I do find it interesting I chose two sons and not daughters. 

I'm fascinated that I made a choice on my family tree that prioritized design over reality. My mom (Kathleen) is the older of Elfrieda and Harry's kids, so she should be on the left, not the right. That would put me (the older of two) on the far left, which would have required a bigger piece of paper to add a spouse on my left. By depicting Mom as younger than Uncle Don, I am now in the center instead of on the end left where I should be as the oldest and the tree is more balanced. I can't figure out why I switched my cousins though; Matthew should be to the left of Timothy. Did Mrs. Brooksher somehow know, and that's why I got an A- instead of an A?

It's fun seeing how much my drawing style (and my handwriting) has changed since I was 12. I'm pleased that I now know where eyes are located on the face and that I've discovered higher quality paper that won't yellow so badly over time!

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