Sunday, May 18, 2014

Three Families Who Moved Away, But Remained in the Heart

Pup, Calvin, Cecelia and Ilsa
     Over the years a rare few families from my childcare center would move away from Walla Walla.  I had managed to keep track of a few of them.  Ilsa and her brother Calvin and their mom, Cecelia, were one of these families.  Cecelia was missed doubly as she was also a teacher and a friend.  I had heard from Cecelia about their home for some years and so was delighted to be a guest for a night in the hills above Ukiah, California.

Ilsa Loving a Horse
      The pleasure of teachers is to meet a former child and find that they remember you.  Better yet is that they have retained those qualities for which you loved them in the first place and then magically matured.  Ilsa and Calvin gladly showed me their Montessori School, introduced me to kids and teachers.  Ilsa made sure I got to go up the mountain where she rides horses.  She takes care of them when the owner is off leading a trail ride.  Her confidence and joy were obvious in every movement of the tasks at hand.  Later she showed me the tree house her grandparents built.

    Calvin reluctantly, but with a smile gave me two chances at a photo.  This was followed by their mom reading a chapter from a book.  I wish that every child got this blessing beyond the years when they can read themselves.  

Calvin backed by the dog cage for a seeing-eye dog in training.
   I suppose if there is any wish that I had for a child, it would be that they love reading.  Ilsa certainly got that wish come true.

    Thanks to this really lovely family (grandparents, dogs and all) I had a wonderful stop on my trip.

     Some months ago I got to see another former preschool child, Aidan, as he was getting ready for his high school prom in Akron, Ohio.  (High school.  Imagine.  And his sister off in college.)

 The next day his girlfriend and him invited me to join them on a visit to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio. (How often does this happen?)  We had a great time viewing both the architecture and contents.  A Rolling Stones exhibit attracted us all. 

A Sergent Pepper's Uniform
    Tim and Carolyn, Aidan’s parents, are old friends, whom I truly miss.  I vouch that Tim is still a good cook and both thoughtful conversationalists.  We went for a walk in the woods near their home.
I love it when old friends still feel like friends.

     A third family in North Carolina, Parke and Andi, have five children: Mia, Noel, MacKenzie, Pete and T.J.  The first three children attended the childcare center.  Parke and Andi were founding families.  I missed seeing Noel, but got to talk to him.  All of the others came and went.  Good kids, great adults.  I failed to get any photos of the family that I can find, but suffice it to say we had a blast.  Andi took me for a walk in the woods and their bird feeders kept my attention.  Parke, Andi and I had some great discussions including one on the state of education in North Carolina.  (Sad.)

Backyard Feeder
Andi and Parke provided me with the best ice storm on the trip.  Thanks.
 I know that I missed seeing a few families… maybe next trip!

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