Teacher Appreciation

There are many amazing facets of my daughter’s teacher this year.  She is thoughtful, kind, generous, and loving.  The students in her room feel loved, appreciated, and special every day they are in her care.  You sense it in the room and hear it in the children’s words.

This weekend, Kelsey came home beaming with pride over the “special” day that would happen on Wednesday.  Though it may have been an absolute coincidence to couple stuffed animal day (she’s bringing her Spirit Animal, of course) with a snack on Wednesday, the fact that this would be happening on Kelsey’s needle day made her smile all weekend long.

“This will give me something to smile about in the morning rather than cry my eyes out as usual,” she said, loud and clear.

To all of the teachers who brighten their students lives with thoughtfulness, empathy, and dedication, I thank you.

Mrs. P, YOU have been a remarkable influence on my daughter’s life this year.  It is no surprise she idolizes you, but more than that, you have given her reasons to smile often, inspired her curiosity, and fostered an environment that respects all learners.


Mrs. P, we are grateful for you and all you have done this year for our girl.

Grateful to NBC 10 @Issue

Rosemary Connors and NBC10 @Issue, we thank you once again for your dedication to issues that matter most in the Delaware Valley.  We were grateful for the time, grateful for your assistance, and grateful for giving our organization a voice.

Thank you for helping make our issue @Issue.

Special Announcement

Every night at dinner, we talk about two things: our favorite part of the day and our greatest challenge of the day.  Sometimes we laugh together, sometimes we problem solve, and sometimes we talk about a better way that we could have handled the situation.  This is a part of every night that I treasure.

At the dinner table last night, Kelsey shared that she had a “special announcement” to make.  

“Family,” she formally addressed us first, “there is something that has been on my mind lately.  I wanted to tell you about it.”

“Here we go,” I think.

“I have learned that the world can be beautiful and full of happiness or it can be mean and cold.”  Her father and I looked at each other without really knowing how to respond.

“How at five years old has this been on her mind lately?” you may wonder at first.  Then you think back over the past few months that she has endured: a hospital stay, four emergency room visits, weeks missed of dancing school, days missed of Kindergarten, an emergency visit to the NIH, steroids, a more potent medicine, a daily injection to better manage her pain, and the giant red patches that itch her and hide under her sleeves and her pants as a reminder of that daily torture.  You think about the wonderful moments of the past month alone, including: singing Christmas carols, Santa Claus coming to town, a holiday show, family time, snuggling with her puppy, baking cookies, making ornaments, and watching holiday movies.

Thinking through all of the sorrow and triumphs, all of life’s challenges and favorite parts that we relive every night, I inquire, “What makes you say that Kels?”

“It’s just something I’ve been thinking about lately.  Most importantly, I really wanted to say, thank you for making the world beautiful for me Mom and Dad.”

Profound.  Insightful.  Beautiful.  

Painful and joyous simultaneously.  Her announcement gave me all of the perspective I needed to end the day (and 2016 for that matter) with a smile.

Here’s to hoping that 2017 is filled with far more beauty and much less pain for my beautiful daughter.

To many more favorites than challenges for you and yours in the year ahead, and to many more special announcements…