I have been operating a potentially fast relay for a few days now. I only wish to run ~ 15 hrs. a day so I can shut off my laptop at night. I've been reading about Tor and relays for days now and haven't seen this addressed. On the average I begin at 6 am and shut down at 9 pm. does running a relay this way "fit in"?
I would definitely say 'Yes' here, because your relay will help to improve the overall bandwidth of the Tor network. The Tor blog has an article which describes the lifecycle of a new relay. Your relay will probably always be in phase one. So it doesn't receive a Guard flag.
Another good approach ist to configure your laptop as a bridge. This helps users in censored countries to get access to the Internet. As far as I know it will help from the start and doesn't need the 'warm-up phase' like relays.