Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Memorial Service

Today was the memorial service. It was a beautiful, funny, poignant, inspirational event. I was honored to be asked to sit with the family. It was almost like a reunion, many friends from the past had come to pay their respects.

I just left my friend's house. It is quiet there. All of the funeral preparations are over. The family has headed back home. Her other boys were in bed. We sat there, she in her pajamas, I in my sweats, expressing to each other how we felt about each other. We are a funny pair, neither one real comfortable with baring our souls. I told her about how sweet it was that her family thanked me for being such a good friend to her. But, as I explained to her, I couldn't be any other way...she was the other half of me...and often, the better half. You know how twins are? They can finish each other's sentences and feel each other's pain. It's like that with me and Tracey. So, to reciprocate, she told me about how she has told her boss again and again, how she will never have another teacher to work with like me. How she and I could take one little idea and expand and modify it to teach the children we were charged with. It was her way of telling me I am special to her. And, as I sit and reflect on it, tears roll down my face, thankful to have her in my life.

Ever heard of the 5 love languages? They are words of affirmation, quality time, gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. I definitely feel like my strongest love language is acts of service...that is how I let people know I love them, and how I best receive love from others. Tracey is the same way. Which is why we don't need to hug or share sappy words to know that we care about each other. We show it through doing...driving her somewhere, loaning me her computer, etc.

Sigh...I believe it is time to rest.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Basketball Banquet

Tonight was the Urbana Tigers Basketball Banquet. The special guest speaker was Bruce Douglas, the former basketball player (and uncle to our coach). I think maybe some of the dads were more excited about meeting Bruce than the kids were, LOL!

Josh received the award for "Most Coachable"...which means that he was the one who did exactly as he was instructed at all times. You know Josh, always out to improve his game!

A little side story....

You remember the post about how wonderful Josh's coach is?? And how absolutely sweet and precious Coach's girlfriend is?? Well, today was Jackie's birthday. Paul did a beautiful job making it special for her, even though she had to spend the evening at the banquet. Check out this picture and just guess what she got....

and she said "YES!"

Monday, February 23, 2009

Rest in Peace

My dear, dear friend, who I have been privledged to call my best friend for about 9 years, lost her son yesterday. This wonderful woman is grieving the loss of one of the four boys she adopted many years ago. She opened her home and her heart to four boys with special needs, but now there is a empty place in that incredibly large heart. Please pray for her and the three boys as they learn to do life without one of their own.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

One step closer...

I am getting closer....I am beginning the last of four entries for the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards portfolio. Now, that does not mean that I am done with the other three entries. Anyone who knows anything about me knows that I will pour over each entry repeatedly to make sure that every single word choice is correct. So, I would not go as far as to say that I am 3/4 done...

I spent a little time purusing the Illinois State University website last night. I found out how to order my cap and gown, where I can order graduation announcements, and that they actually have processed my application for graduation. I feel a little like a bride preparing for her wedding...what do I wear?? How will I let everyone know about my good news?? And what songs will I play at my party after?? What kind of food will I serve??

OK, back to reality....graduation is months away, and this portfolio HAS to be postmarked by March 31st.'s back to writing I go....

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Happy Birthday Josh!

Twelve years ago, I was laying in a hospital room, marveling at the miracle that lay in my arms. It had been a long nine months, wondering, "Would this one make it?" We had lost our first baby very early in the pregnancy, and I was scared that something would go wrong with this one, too. But, after several reassuring sonograms and a very active little guy moving around, I slowly came to realize that not only would this baby make it, but he was a strong one.

Now, he is twelve. Daily, I am amazed at the incredible human being that developed from that little jelly bean-shape on the sonogram screen. He is smart, he is funny, he is talented, and, best of all, he is a good person. While I do think his daddy and I have something to do with it, I also think that there is something innate in him, something that placed by God's hand, that allows him to know right from wrong, and how to be a good friend. Something that makes him the Josh we all love.