Posted tagged ‘schools’

The Revelations of Snow

February 5, 2016

WORDS FROM W.W.                                               February 5, 2016

                                

The eighteen inches of snow that we received this week was beautiful in many ways. Our back deck looks like a winter wonderland. Pike’s Peak is a living postcard!

The snow has also revealed many things..revelations, if you will, of some things we knew already, and some things that are fascinating.

Here’ one! A Jaguar gets just as stuck in eighteen inches of snow as a Ford Taurus. $600 a month car payments do not mean squat to a street with a foot and a half of snow on it. There is not a “premium lane” on our street. Snow is the great equalizer, unless you’re one of those big pick-up trucks.

Here’s another revelation! The first day when school is canceled there is great jubilation amongst students and teachers. Day Two is still greeted with cheering. Snow gear and apparel sits waiting by the door. But by Day Three of school cancellations parents are pulling their hair out, students are lounging on the couch in a semi-comatose state, and teachers are now thinking “We’ll be going to school in July!” When I left our high school gym last night after our basketball games and we were greeted by more snow falling the reaction of parents and students was “NO!”

The most revealing thing about our snow week, however, has been the diminishing value of the U.S. Postal Service. We received mail on Monday, but the mail carrier has not been by since…and today is Friday. What have we missed? The Wednesday advertising paper that has the supermarket weekly specials in it, probably a couple of envelopes from Chase Bank trying to get us to sign up for a new credit card, the weekly AARP ad, and perhaps the utility bill. I’m assuming that the mail might get delivered today, but the snowstorm has shown us that mail delivery is no longer a necessity six days a week. Maybe three!

I’m not moaning here. Our street hasn’t been plowed yet. Eighteen inches of snow have been mashed down to resemble the Iditarod. My nephew in Baltimore couldn’t get his dog to go outside to relieve himself when the East Coast got blasted a couple of weeks ago. I guess our mail carrier looked down our street with similar fear and trembling.

The best revelation from this week was seeing neighbors working together to clear sidewalks and snowplowing driveways. Our neighbor on the corner brought his snowblower all the way up the sidewalk to the house next for to us. Eric, the husband who lives there, is deployed right now. Our corner neighbor was looking out for his family. This morning two other men and I helped push a lady out of a slippery mesh at the corner. A couple of four-wheel drive trucks whizzed by us like we were the underprivileged, but the three of us helped her get out of an unfortunate situation. That’s the best thing about massive amounts of snow. In the midst of no mail delivery and snow cancellations we get the opportunity to experience community.

Taking Lunch to the Teachers

August 22, 2013

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                          August 22, 2013

                                      “Taking Lunch To The Teachers”

       For the past five years our congregation has taken lunch to the staff of Audubon School, the elementary school a half mile down the street from us, on the staff work day right before students return from summer vacation. We take lunch to them and we eat lunch with them.

We used to take lunch to a couple of other grade schools close by…but they closed.  We trust it wasn’t because we brought them lunch! Actually, it was a sign of the changing population base in our community..more seniors, less kids.

The reasons we take lunch to the staff are multiple. We want them to know that they are appreciated. We’re entrusting our children to them. If there was a scale that measured parental gripes versus “thank you’s” it would probably be tilted. You can make the determination which way you think it would lean. Providing lunch is an easy way…so easy…to just say thank you.

We take lunch to them because we want them to know that we’re in a partnership with them…that it takes a community to raise a child. Churches are a part of that, and schools are a part of that. In fact, although there are other participants in the raising of a child- namely parents- the two major players outside the family are the church and the school. Our church has worked hard at being a support for the school. It has now come to the point where the school has asked how they can help us. Last December the school choir came one morning and sang for our seniors’ group, and then we all had a pizza and salad lunch together. (Not much salad was eaten!)

We also want them to know that we are praying for them. I tell the staff that each year at the luncheon. I told them that I am fully aware of the separation of church and state. If they want to share a prayer concern with us, no student names, we will pray for them. At the luncheon one of the staff people told me of a student with a serious health issue. We prayed for the student…once again, no names were shared…but there’s a good chance that God is familiar with the child!

We take lunch to them because we want to reinforce the commitment to be there for them. “The Lunchroom Ladies” are usually the first ones to notice a student in need. They know that they can have the school secretary call us and request a winter coat for a first grader, or a pair of jeans for a young girl, or a pair of shoes. When the school social worker has a family in need of food we stock them up.

It has taken a few years, but the school staff sees us as their allies, not a threat. The result is a better community, a community that knows that we will help.