Thursday, August 23, 2012

The First Day of School Joy - Sharing it with Kids in Ethiopia

This week I took my boys to their first day of school. I had been counting down to that day, the first day of full day school for all of my children, since my oldest was born, since I left the classroom and my professional life for the chaos of being a stay at home parent who doesn't actually get to stay at home.

And while some parents were anxious, and some kids, our family was full of joy. For the kids it was excitement of seeing old friends and playing on the big playground. For me, it was the prospect of a quiet home and time to actually really, really pursue this writing thing professionally.

It was a good day. A good first day. And I think part of this was because it was so easy. My boys are boys, they do not care about their clothes as long as I don't make them dress up or wear pants. So we do not have to spend time in the summer finding the right outfit or shopping for new school clothes. And thanks to our PTA, I did not have to drive from store to store looking for just the right school supplies. No trips to other Targets to find the set of 8 water colors instead of the 16 color set.

I don't know when it started, but our PTA has made the decision to purchase all the supplies, every single one, for every single student at our school. Every kid, starts the day with all their supplies in their classrooms. Every student as the same brands, the same items. They do ask that parents reimburse for the cost if they can but if not that's okay. And I love this about our PTA. I was once the kid with generics wishing my pencils sharpened as well as the Ticonderogas. Every kid, every supply need met.

So part of my joy was because I was not stressed out having spent the last few days rushing around finding school supplies. And part of it was knowing that my kids attend a school that has families that are willing to make every kid the priority.

My kids are blessed. Blessed beyond measure. And I am thankful.

Then this morning I saw a Facebook post from a dear friend who is going to be traveling to Ethiopia next month. It was an Amazon Wish List. She is gathering school and medical supplies for a school and a medical clinic she will visit and has been working with since adopting her son from Ethiopia. Her heart is there. It is with those kids who do not have a PTA buying supplies for every student. It is with those kids who need really basic supplies - notebooks, pens, coloring supplies, soccer balls, batteries, etc.

I am thankful for our blessings but ever aware that there are those without, those in need of help. It was so easy for me, the person staying behind in my comfortable world, to help kids who need it so much. And so I clicked on the list and purchased a few items which are being shipped directly to Cassie who will take them with her to Ethiopia.

Would you be willing to consider supporting these kids by buying them some notebooks or a pediatric stethoscope? Maybe involve your kids and have them help select a soccer ball or some coloring books? Here is the Amazon Wish List link. Click on over and see what catches your eye.

My joy overflowed yesterday watching my boys walk into their classrooms full of crayons, pencils, school books, glue sticks, and every thing else they need and want for school. Now my joy is even more complete knowing I am helping the children of Adami Tulu School.

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