They'll know we are Christians by our love

"We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord;
We are one int he Spirit, we are one in the Lord;
And we pray that all unity will one day be restored.
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love,
yes, they'll know we are Christians by our love."

We sang my absolute favorite hymn this morning, They'll Know We Are Christians by Our Love. This hymn was written in 1966 by Peter Scholtes when he was a parish priest on the Southside of Chicago. He needed a hymn that would bridge racial and socioeconomic divides, and one that would help those fleeing the church because of hypocrisy remember why they were Christians. 

"We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand;
We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand;
And together we'll spread the news that God is in our land.
And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love,
yes, they'll know we are Christians by our love."

These words, for today's church, are st…

Continuations, not resolutions

As a new year begins we all seem to be making resolutions, or making anti-resolutions for some! I am not making resolutions as much as I am making continuations.

When I say continuations I think everyone gets it. We, as humans, are (hopefully) always in a state of change. It is at big life changes that we seem to make proclamations of change and of intentions, resolutions as they are known. I am faced with a new year and a year that is the last in my 40's! As of mid-November 2018 I will be fifty years old. More on that as it comes closer, I'll bet.

Continuations - the most obvious is that I plan on making this blog look better. I have always intended on sitting down and working on the aesthetics, but then the words get in the way. Well, and life also gets in the way and I choose something else to work on during that time.
Another continuation is to take care of myself. That seems easy enough, but we all know that is easier said than done. True self-care means saying no when yo…

Puberty, Jedis, and experts

Recently I have had a number of parents turn to me for advice on how to handle their middle/high schooler. I will admit that I was a bit shocked when the first asked me point blank how he could get rid of the yelling, disrespect, and arguing plaguing his house of  tweens. I was able to talk through coping strategies that I use when in the classroom, and even congratulated myself for pulling a few gems from my own home life.
When the next set(s) of parents asked for advice I gave them my very best. I was able to speak to the behaviors I had seen in the classroom and offer them a different look at their child. A fresh set of eyes from someone who sees their child in a completely different context than any parent will ever be able to experience.
I have a policy that if I am going to talk to you about a negative I am experiencing with your child, that I will follow it with at least two positives. I truly feel that if I am not able to name at least two positive things about a student that…

We are Easter People

As Christians we are charged to be Easter People. There seems to be a romanticized view of these words during this Lenten season, a time that is to be one of the most holy times of the year. We use these words very easily, almost flippantly without looking to see what the words are, what they mean. Today the words 'We are Easter People' have been rattling around in my brain trying to make sense of something quite nonsensical.

Recently the church I attend has been in upheaval. Many have said that they are going to leave the church. To be honest, I myself have said that very thing many times. I was/am angry, frustrated, sad, basically name an emotion and I have felt it towards certain people and situations in the church. Then today it hit me, I am Easter People. I have a an obligation to look above what man has done, been doing within and to my church. I have an obligation to look towards forgiveness and move forward.

Boy, that was sure easy to say. Even easier to write! I can t…

Look up, people!

Last Friday was the final day of Read Across America week,(aka Dr Suess's birthday week). That day's theme was 'Dress for your Future Career Day'. I'm still not 100% sure what I want to be when I grow up, so I looked to my left that morning and chose the tiara sitting there in my bathroom. Yea, don't judge I have a tiara! 

I grabbed some pearls, straightened my tiara and was off to greet the day and some crazy elementary school kids. First stop was Starbucks because, well I was about to face elementary kids uncaffeinated, duh. 
Since I am obviously used to wearing a tiara daily, I forgot and left it on when I ran into Starbucks. One lady looked up and got the biggest grin on her face. I realized and told her why I was wearing it. She told me that she assumed as she had just dropped her future surgeon and veterinarian at school herself!  The strangest, funniest, oddest...not sure what adjective should go here now is that no one else even noticed. They were all …

A (late) Valentine to those who work in a school

I have been undercover (ha!) at my child's old school these past few years and boy do I have an expose to write for you!
First, the ha! was because I am probably the worst at being undercover. I didn't exactly have what you'd call a low profile at the school before I started my first long-term sub gig last year. I was PTA president then, so most teachers knew at least my name if not me personally. Plus, my child was then in 5th grade, so we had already worked out way through the grades and the teachers at that point.

This year my child is no longer at the school, but our hearts and his mother still are there. I have the privilege to be a long-term sub again this year, and what I have learned on this new 'undercover assignment' has solidified everything I knew and thought I knew before.

We all say and think that our teachers and staff members care for our children. I'm not sure though if I even knew how much. When I used to go to lunch when working in corporate …

The Worst Year of my Life, or How I Failed My Child

Yesterday I told part of my story of my child's worst year of his life and I was reminded that I have always intended to write about it. So, here we go.

When my child was in fourth grade he would come home and tell me he was being bullied. The things that he was initially telling me did not seem like bullying, but rather just kids being kids. Jerks yes, but still age appropriate kid crap. I told him that he needed to talk to his teacher and that I would also talk with the teacher. She assured me that there was nothing extraordinary going on, and that the kids were working it out amongst themselves. I left the conference feeling much better and resolving to not be "that mom" and to let my son work through some of these things himself.

He started coming home from school in worse and worse moods. He constantly complained of stomach aches, headaches, and was throwing up almost every morning before school. I was still trusting an adult more than my own child and would give hi…