Saturday, August 8, 2009

Back to School Already?!

When I was a kid I remember vividly being bored after about a month of summer. I had plenty to do, but school offered the routine that kept my mind busy.

Here we are 2 weeks away from the start of school, and I haven't heard the kids complain at all about being bored!

The summer started with 2 weeks of swimming lessons at the pool in Boerne. What great fun they had, and what good swimmers they have turned out to be. Annie says she would like to be on the Olympic swim team some day, and she has the build for it. She also has the potential to have the drive and determination to work hard for what she wants.

We want to say a great big Thank You to the sponsors of the swimming lessons!

Miss Debbie (Randy's sister) came for a week. That is always a special time for the kids. They love spending time with Miss Debbie. They read books, work in their Math workbooks, play games and get lots of attention.

While Miss Debbie was here we decided that we would have a 1/2 birthday celebration for Charlie since his birthday is in January and he wanted to go swimming in the ocean for his birthday present. On the way to Corpus Christi he told us over and over that he had heard on the news that there were jelly fish in the water and that we should be careful. Well, sure enough, Miss Debbie got stung by a jelly fish! And Charlie identified it correctly as a Man of War. He is so fascinated with sea life, we decided that maybe he will be a Marine Biologist when he grows up!

The girls spent a week at Camp Chrysallis. This was their 3rd year and they said it was the best ever!

Marquel attended Summer Celebration at St. John and thoroughly enjoyed it. Marquel is rather shy and we thought it would be a good way for her to meet the kids her age at St. John and feel more like a part of the St. John family. Thank you so much to the girls who made her feel welcome.

Now with the start of school close, Annie can't wait to fill her new backpack with school supplies. This morning she was working in her "How not to Worry" book, and one of her worries is not being able to pass her 4th grade tests. We have a lot of work to do to calm her fears and help her have the confidence she needs.

Marquel will be in 6th grade and is looking forward to getting involved in more athletics. Her first love is volleyball, and that is the best way to go for a college scholarship in girls sports. We hope to get her into the Volleyball program at the Parks and Rec center near their house this winter. Last year she grew so much she went through 3 clothes sizes, and she needs all new clothes again!

Charlie has qualified for Special Ed due to his ADHD, and the Special Ed teacher is delighted to have this extremely bright boy in her program. She has lots of fun things planned to keep him busy and out of trouble. We have come to understand better some of the issues created by the years of abuse and neglect from his mom. This summer we have worked with him to help him understand that he can trust the adults in his life to take care of him.

Chip turned 4 on July 24th. All the kids birthdays are a milestone for them, but Chip's birthday always reminds us of how tiny he was when we first met him, and how far all the kids have come. Chip is proud to tell everyone that he is 4, he got 4 shots, and he is ready to go to school! He will be attending Pre-K this year. In all the clothes that have been given to the boys, we have plenty of uniforms for Chip, and enough for Charlie until he gets to a growth spurt.

In addition to making sure they have enough uniforms that fit and the school supplies that they need, we get the kids new backpacks and new shoes. Their backpacks get lots of hard use, so they need to be replaced each year, and it is fun for them to pick out a new one with their favorite design or colors.

A while back I heard about a charity that a lady started because she felt every child should have a new pair of shoes on the first day of school. Her charity is called "My New Red Shoes" She felt if a child could walk into school with pretty new shoes, the boost to their confidence was invaluable. So each year we make sure the kids have new shoes to wear on the first day of school.

If you want to help the kids with back to school supplies, you can make a donation to the Thornton Family Fund:

Make Checks Payable to:
St. John Lutheran Church
Memo: Thornton Family Fund
Mail it to:
St. John Lutheran Church
PO Box 1081
Boerne, TX 78006

Thank you to each and every one of you! You are making a difference for these 4 kids!

Until next time . . .