Sunday, March 12, 2006

Next to apples, friends are God's greatest invention! Wait...maybe it's a tie...they're equally good...

This week has been kind of an emotional one, with me helping Bethany leave Tech mid-semester and Mike finding out that Courtney's pregnant & he's going to be a Grandpa in a month. (Everything's fine, and we both love our kids unconditionally, but news like these two announcements can kinda rock your parental boat. Love and approval are not at all the same thing...)

Anyway, this week someone posted a sign in the Madison ladies' restroom about how girlfriends stay even when pets die, kids grow up, and husbands leave. (It was one of those Maxine-type email messages that circulate a half-million times until it has so many forward marks that it's practially unreadable.) And it's true...friends are always there to keep us steady and remind us that our glasses are half-full. (And to suggest that we *completely* fill them with a margarita after we go shopping!) :-)

Here's a FEW of the ways my friends, knowingly or unknowingly, made me happy this week:

*Amber isn't just the lady who does my hair; she's also a friend. When I walked in to her salon on Tuesday, I'd just gotten off the phone with Bethany. She said that she'd be upset, too, and that I was handling the news better than she or her husband (the principal at Mann) would have, which made me feel good. We talked about how much we loved our girls and how hard it is to let go and how we probably never will be able to and how we finally realize what it was like for our parents to watch us succeed or fail on our own.

*I got a hug from Crystal on Wednesday.

*Thursday, my sister took the two back seats out of her minivan and drove 5 hours round-trip to help me move all of Bethany's stuff back to Abilene, plus I received an email with a good book recommendation from my sister-in-law and a great email from my childhood friend Melanie in New Hampshire.

*Bethany P., Kirsten, & I had an International Night on Friday night...American wine, Thai food, and a German movie with English subtitles.

*And then, yesterday, eleven Franklin Middle School teachers/former teachers went to San Angelo to drive along the river, eat at Miss Hattie's, and enjoy Shopping Therapy on the "tourist row" of shops. My therapeutic purchases? A cool picture of Lady Liberty being built in Paris, a set of coffee-themed Christmas ornaments, a 6-ft. Christmas tree for the school library, two candles, a robe, a 1972 cookbook (from the Corpus Christi Jr. League that has at least one recipe from my pediatrician's wife), a bracelet, and...

...sitting in my livingroom with a Raggedy Ann in it...

...a vintage, 1950s wooden high chair!!!!

I snuck it in the house at 3:00 this morning when thunder woke me up. Mike will get a big surprise when he goes in the livingroom to read the Sunday paper and drink his latte.

Well, gotta run. This house has been anxiously anticipating Spring Break for a good cleaning. It's so messy that it looks like we've been burgled! If the cops walked in here, they'd start taking fingerprints...

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Wednesday nights well-spent...

The other day, I was telling Kirsten how I dread helping with the Kindergarten class each Wednesday night, but how much I love it once I'm there and how I leave in a good mood each week. (It's kinda' like working out at the gym!)

So, anyways, each week there is a craft, a lesson, songs, prayer, and a snack. Our craft has been an ongoing project for the last few weeks because we're building little "Mini Me"s who are ready for battle in the Lord's Army. The cardboard template of a tiny human dressed in flannel clothes & yarn hair that we started with weeks ago now has a shield of faith, a belt of truth, a breastplate of righteousness, a helmet of salvation, etc.

Last Wednesday, we used muffin cup liners, glitter glue, and tinsel to make our helmets. While they dried, we gathered for circle time and songs across the room. (This part is so cool because the kids LOVE to sit in our laps or beside us; unlike middle schoolers who rarely like or respect their teachers as they should, kindergarteners and first graders RACE to see who can get in our laps or leaning against our sides first. It does wonders for the self-esteem of a middle school librarian!)

Sarah, who looks like Bethany did back in Kindergarten, but with brown eyes instead of blue ones, beat everyone to my lap this week. The kids were singing and laughing and taking turns being the song leader in Circle Time when little Sarah--perched in my lap and leaning against my chest--looked up at me with her big brown eyes and said, "Miss Kristy! I'm your breastplate of righteousness!"

We both cracked up and laughed until Miss Crystal asked what was going on. As soon as I told her why, the student in her lap said, "Yeah! Me, too. I'm your breastplate of righteousness, Miss Crystal!" Everyone had a good laugh, and we gave cuddles to the two lucky enough to get to that coveted lap position first.

How cute is that? I swear to you...I get so much more from these sweet children than I give...