Sunday, August 9, 2009
Hello all...so happy to see you here today. I thought given the theme today, I would make things simple. I have set out at least eight kinds of muffins today. Let see...lemon poppy seed, apple cinnamon, blueberry, banana nut, almond, bran with raisin and without and maple with delicious frosting. There is also a bounty of fruit today. Delicious apples, oranges, red and green grapes, apricots and melons of every kind. Ohh and the most delicious peaches you have ever tasted..with whip cream if you would like. There is peach iced tea and Kona coffee. Yummmm!!
I have racked a quilt full of back to school items. So very glad you have joined me again today. You know..it means the world to me to find you here!! Please pull up a chair and join us!!
We spent most of Saturday back to school shopping. We rented a car and hit at least five stores to get the very best prices on the items on the lists. Because my two youngest attend a magnet school with uniforms required, it was very expensive. As a teacher I understand the need to have tools in the classroom and how very much they spend out of their own pockets. Even as a preschool teacher I spend a good chunk of cash to provide the experience in learning that I want to provide for my students. As a parent the cost of supplies and uniforms this year nearly made me choke!! There was a moment that I seriously considered homeschooling again. Not that homeschooling is cheap..but I never in all the years I home schooled spent that much up front in August for simple supplies and clothing!!!??
Given the age of my children, the oldest being 28 and Nonni being five I remember the first time I was asked by a school district to bring supplies. It seems to me that each year that list grows and grows. The last couple of years we have been able to absorb the cost, this year it is a challenge to eat $300.00. Yup with two in school this year, the cost not only doubled for one but now we have two going. I had budgeted half of that and am now robbing Peter to pay Paul for the next month or so. From what I am hearing from lots of folks around me..most of us are this year. Whether we have children in school, a mortgage or rent to pay, food bills climbing, jobs cutting hours or cutting jobs all together we are all stretched thin. But..at least I have Peter to rob and we will catch up..a huge blessing!
Three years ago there is no way we could have provided our children with what was expected this year. I struggle each Fall with what other families not as fortunate as we are, are going through. I know that horrid moment that you know you will not be able to send your child to school with all the things on the list and that he or she will stick out. That you will have to call the community group, or food bank or other agency to ask for supplies. I know how humbling and pride sucking it is to stand in line with dozens of other parents for free giveaways. Feeling that somehow you have failed your child.
So I'm going to offer up an observation here and perhaps something that we might all think about as the school year approaches. If you give, please give the same quality of items you buy for your own children. Spend that little extra on name brand supplies. You will never know what it means to that parent who receives your gift to find that the calculator works, or the markers are Crayola not some brand from who knows where. The cheap stuff is tempting as you will not see the child who has to use it..but I am asking you to ask your own children - what would they prefer. Maybe involve them in this opportunity to have a giving heart. Try to imagine yourself in that parents shoes..how would you feel? What would you wish for your child on that magical first day of school? Please give that to the less fortunate children too!!
I had the joy today of sitting with Fox and Nonni and organizing their new supplies into their backpacks..last years backpacks. They labeled and oooed and ahhhed over what fun stuff they had. We have the power to offer this up to others who really need the help this year. As one of those Moms who has stood in that line, sucked up her pride and thankfully took what was offered..I thank you with my whole heart for giving. Let's make some back to school magic for some kids out there!!!
Ok...I am stepping off my soapbox now and I am going to grab a banana muffing and a hot cup of Kona coffee with cream and sugar. Won't you grab a plate and dig in?
Before I go today..would you do me a favor. Please pop by Renee's blog and give her a hug. She and her family and going through such deep heartache right now. It would mean the world to me and her. Please keep them all in your hearts and prayers. Have a wonderful week and know your presence here is a blessing to me!! Namaste, Sarah