Monday, November 26, 2012

Thanksgiving Thoughts

So, Thanksgiving has come and gone!  Before November is out the door, I wanted to remark on a few things I'm thankful for...

1. I am so thankful for friends from home who donated copies of "James and the Giant Peach" for my 5th/6th grade class!  We were nearing the end of the book last Wednesday, when the clock said Reading class was over.  The students pleaded with their homeroom teacher, Mr. R. to continue--we had only three more chapters!  I think Mr. R. wanted to hear the ending, too.  So, we read through to the ending, which was met by a big round of applause.  They wanted to know if there was any type of monument in NYC's Central Park that gave a nod to the story and I couldn't answer--I've never been there!  (Readers, do any of you know?)

Reading "James" has been so exciting!  I have been so happy with how engaged the students have been.  We've even been watching segments of the movie and talking about how it compares.  And, we've talked a lot about the character James and how he has transformed throughout the story.  I think it's so fitting since many of them--at age 11-ish--are starting to change and grow themselves.

We're going to keep the Roald Dahl momentum going by reading "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" next.

The 3rd/4th grade class is about halfway through "Mr. Popper's Penguins" and we have a laugh every day as we read.

2. I'm thankful that God's been listening to my one-word prayers for my three kiddos.  Danielle hasn't yet failed to meet a new challenge with bravery--and those challenges present themselves weekly, at least.  Elli has been conquering new tasks toward more self-sufficiency left and right!

She has mastered tying her shoes!

She's showing lots of improvement in cleaning up after herself and taking care of her belongings.

She is exploring on her own and bringing home lots of treasures...

And, she's reading!

Naomy makes new discoveries every day and talks and talks (and talks and talks) all about them to whoever is willing to listen.  She is most excited lately about a) the helicopters and planes that she sees "flyin' in da sky!" and b) her achievements on the potty.  She's on Day 6 with no accidents and is even staying dry through the nights!  Her discoveries keep all of us very busy... and sometimes, I wonder if I need to make her prayer weekly--rather than daily???  Just yesterday, she "discovered" what blue chalk looks like on the outside wall of the house...and even as I scrubbed it off this morning, she "discovered" what it looks like on the tile floor inside!!  Gaaaah!  (Then, she "discovered" the reaction that mess got out of mommy and "discovered" what a spank on the bottom feels like!)

3. I'm thankful for new friends in Haiti who share their wisdom and experience, hearty laughs, can openers, a Thanksgiving meal, and loads of encouragement as we struggle through life here.  And, I'm ever-so grateful for friends from home who never stop letting me know they love me and miss me.  My "Haiti-8" team from our March trip to Port-au-Prince gave me a call the night before Thanksgiving and it was oh-so encouraging to hear their voices and laughter.   Thank you, friends.  Thank you, God, for my friends!

2 Corinthians 9:10 "God who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness."

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