Monday, June 15, 2015

Shout Out!: 006

Shout-Outs are a new addition to my blog. They are to recognize people's accomplishments or to express my gratitude for their good and kind deeds. It's a way to celebrate the little things that may otherwise go unnoticed.

I will put about 5 entries for each post so keep checking back! 
*Updated 6/22/15


This Shout-Out is long overdue. Growing up, I loved watching The 'Burbs. I enjoyed the teamwork of the guys from the neighborhood that suspected some crazy things were happening next door. I also really like The Rear Window. Being in a little box among rows of other little boxes I often think about that movie. Not that I get any crazy ideas or anything and spy and stuff...not too much anyway. Thankfully I don't have neighbors like these. Of course I don't know all of them, but in four years it's been pretty calm around here. I don't suspect I have to worry about bones in trunks and murders through open windows. We are blessed to be a few doors down from N and S. N has lent me his mower countless of times and even gave me his not-so-old printer that is still in perfect working order. He's always good for a talk about U2 and sports too. S, for awhile, paid us to watch their little girl and just recently gave Angie a pair of sunglasses. Angie had lost hers and asked to borrow a pair and S wouldn't accept them back. "Don't squash my joy," she said to Angie. Their son and our daughter are also best friends. They're good people and we're lucky to have them in our lives.

Father's Day Message

Dawn Geschiere gave a wonderful message at our church last night (and this morning) about being a father. She talked about her own dad throughout the message and how he did one of the most important things a dad could do: Show up. I enjoyed hearing about her father - who happened to pass away about a month after my own dad died back in 2005. She also shared the story of the prodigal son which is one of my favorite stories. It's one that resonated with me even when I was very young listening to it being told in Sunday School. A father waiting and hoping for his son's return and then kissing and embracing him when he does. The best thing about this story is that it's not just about the son who ran off and squandered his money. It's also about the other son who stayed. I encourage you to read The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller. I have not finished it yet, but I enjoy the cultural history behind the story as well as how he shares the significance of the story through both sons and their father. Anyway, thank you, Dawn, for a touching message and reminding me (through your message ) that I need to be much more slow to anger, but also telling me afterwards that I'm a wonderful father.  I will do my best to live up to that.

Former Student

Actually the mother of a former student. Mrs. K stopped me today while the kids were entering the gym for the EOY awards ceremony. Her face was familiar, but she was right, I didn't know who she was. Turns out she is the mother of a former student that I had around my 2nd year of teaching - back in '02 or '03. Her son, Andy, just graduated from VA Tech and is planning to become a calculus teacher. She thanked me for being part of his journey. It was my pleasure! He was a great kid and I have no doubt has grown up to be a man of character. Blessings, Andy!

Summer Pay

It's not the summer pay that was stripped from all FCPS teachers, but it will suffice. So I'm very excited that I will be teaching summer-school this year. I applied the last several years, but never got the job. It helps our family out a great deal since money during the summer is harder to come by. With much gratitude, I thank MK and committee for realizing that I deserve the job. My family thanks you as well. Just maybe...maybe...we can now afford free dinners at IKEA on Tuesdays :) Then of course there's the whole mortgage thing.

EOY Gifts

They are never expected and you certainly never know what you are going to get. End-of-the-year-gifts range from self-made cards (with lots of misspellings) to boxes of chocolate to gift cards. While all are appreciated, some just fill your spirit with more gratitude than others. I suppose that came out wrong. What I mean is, some make you realize God's promises and His providing work in mysterious ways. Even as end-of-the-year gifts. 

To all the families, no matter the gift - whether even a gift at all - I thank you. May I return the kindness by telling you something I told the kids throughout the year: You're always one good choice away from turning your life around. Feel free to remind them (and anyone for that matter) as you see fit.

Shortly after writing this I coincidentally received another gift. A thoughtful student of mine took it upon herself to design a T-shirt for me. She asked a family friend of hers to print etc. So while not an example of God providing financially, it is another example of how much I appreciate any gift no matter the size, shape, color...or material.

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