Sunday, December 06, 2009

Once Upon a Time

I had an idea. I'm certain it wasn't original, I'm sure someone suggested the idea to me and I just decided it was good enough to try out, but about 13 years and a couple months ago, I hosted a baby shower for my sister and as it turns out, for Birdy. The guests were friends, neighbors and relatives mainly from the town we grew up in. The idea was to have each guest write a letter to the baby, letters designated for specific years of her life. So that, on her birthday every year, my niece would have a letter from someone dear to my sister.

I had no idea at the time how fun this would be throughout the years. Perhaps the best part is that we don't know who the letter is from until it is opened. There aren't letters for every year, there weren't quite that many guests at the party, but certainly for the milestones we made sure there would be a letter.

And so today, for Birdy's 13th birthday, she opened the letter.

And it was written by her Papa, my dad (before he had even earned the name of "Papa"!)

It's odd to think that he wrote it before she was even born. It's strange to realize that thirteen years have passed since that day of cake and presents and laughter in our childhood home. But today we were all tickled by the words of Papa, to Birdy, two months before she was born.
More than anything, perhaps, I am touched by his last line, "I hope I'm with you on this special day". I am so grateful that he certain is!!
Happy Birthday, Birdy! And a special thanks to my dad, who probably reluctantly wrote this letter years ago, but has touched us all by this sweet note!
Love you both!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Why It's Easier to Teach the Littles

We're using new curriculum at school to teach reading. I find it to be remarkably cool mainly because it teaches children how to figure out for themselves how to spell because we teach them the rules of the English language. Things I never learned in all my education classes.

While I have a remarkably gifted child who is currently completing Junior/Senior English as an 8th grader, he cannot spell for the life of him, so I've been teaching him the new curriculum as we go to help him become a better speller and to understand the way our written language was developed.

Tonight, putting before him the word 'crinkle', I asked him why the 'c' said /k/ and not /s/ in this word.

My gifted child's answer?

"Um, because 'srinkle' just don't sound right?"