Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

Best wishes for a safe and happy new year!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Winter Joie de Vivre

"Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand- and melting like a snowflake."

-Francis Bacon

There is always excitement surrounding the first snowfall of the year, but when the long- awaited snow comes in the final days of December after months of fifty degree temperatures, it is particularly breathtaking. While most school children were still home on winter break and their families were busy packing away holiday decorations or making plans for New Years, the sparkling flakes began to fall and winter finally arrived, with the first sprinkling of fresh powder.

Although our numbers were modest, with many children still home on holiday, the mood was positively jubilant. The children spent the morning cheerfully pursuing their studies as the snow began to accumulate in the yard. After lunch, came the moment they had been anxiously awaiting: the elated children donned their winter clothing and raced outside, where they were only too happy to break out their sled and commence with pulling each other around the yard. Then, there was the requisite amount of snow shoveling, snow eating, snow angel making, and snowflake catching (catching flakes on black paper and examining them with a magnifying glass), before the tuckered children headed inside for a little digestif of warm cider to warm themselves up before they were tucked into their little cots for their first snowy day nap.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sorry for the Long Absence

"The death of a mother is the first sorrow wept without her."
- Unknown

First of all, I want to apologize for my sudden hiatus. As the parents of students, and some followers of this blog who emailed me wondering about the lack of posts, already know, my mother passed away last weekend after a two month battle with colon cancer. Between my obligations at the school, and spending as much time as possible with my mother in the hospital, I have been extremely short on time.

My mother was a wonderful, giving, person who cared very deeply about the welfare of children. When she wasn't busy raising her own children or teaching children, she was volunteering to help special needs children, to raise money and provide supplies for children's charities, teaching Sunday School, and volunteering as a debate coach and judge. She was also an amazing mother who felt passionnately that the most dominating social and personal virtues are created and maintained within the home and the family.

My entire family would love to thank the entire staff at Exempla Good Samaritan hospital (Lafayette, CO) for their expertise, their kindness, and their compassion. Exempla is a wonderful institution (exactly what you would want a hospital to be) staffed by amazing people; at every turn, and every moment of our time there, we felt truly overcome with gratitude for the service they provided. On the day my mother passed away, we were comforted by nurses who had cared for her throughout her time there, Jordan, a veritable Florence Nightengale (and the wonderful nurse who helped us through her final night), the caring chaplain who had visited my mother daily, CNAs who wept as they brought us warm blankets so we could spend the night with her, the hospital barista who made our coffee every night for the past month and never failed to ask us how she was and give us the opportunity to vent, and even the security guard we passed for our nightly visits, who cried when he found that she had passed. In their own way, each of them made a very difficult time much easier and we were constantly comforted by the knowledge that she spent her last days in their kind and capable hands.