our pen pals gave to us......
These kids are so giving. A mother came in to drop off a present for the party. She was telling me how she had a little extra money and wanted to treat her daughter to a surprise trip to Disneyland. She was trying to drop hints and asking her daughter what she wanted for Christmas. The girl told her mom that her teacher's husband was really sick and all she wanted for Christmas was for him to be healthy. A ten-year-old girl, who could have a trip to Disneyland, only cares for her teacher's husband. Their hearts are so pure. This is even more touching when you know what kind of challenges they face.
Just this week, one of my students had a brand-new baby cousin born. The baby died shortly after birth. How tragic. Another girl couldn't bring a gift to the party because her mom had to go to Phoenix. The student's sister had tried to hang herself and had been life-flighted to a hospital in Phoenix.
Speaking of presents, we had our classroom party. Remember Christmas morning growing up? Some of you may have memories of when your little ones opened their presents. Was it chaos? Wrapping paper flying everywhere? You can't hear anything over the shouts of joy? Imagine a classroom with 26 kids who have just eaten their fill of sugar. Do you imagine utter destruction? It wasn't. I pulled names from the cup and they came to pick out their gift, one at a time. I usually instruct them to wait until everyone has selected a present, then to open theirs. This year, I was a little more relaxed and didn't tell them to wait. But, they did anyway! They sat patiently, with the present burning a hole in their lap, watching their friends select presents. I can't tell you how much I learn from these kids. I am so blessed to spend every day with them. If they only knew.
I love these kids. They have taught me the true meaning of Christmas.