Thursday, July 24, 2014
My daughter, Little V, has a big heart. She is friends with everybody and works hard to make sure everyone feels included and loved. She and 7 other 2nd graders at her school even started a club with this very purpose. They founded the Buddy Club after hearing a bully prevention lecture in class. In the students’ own words, the purpose of the group is “to watch out for bullies, prevent fights, teach kids to stand up for themselves and look for kids that are sad”. To advertise this group, the kids made posters that are hung around the school, announced on the school intercom encouraging all to join the club, presented to each class the purpose of the club and made a link to our school website for parents and students to view. Because of this group, a “Buddy Bench” was ordered and placed on the playground so group members can help those at the bench. Any member of the Buddy Club will come to the aid of anyone in need. The group meets at least once a month over lunch to brainstorm techniques in helping on the playground. At the beginning of each new school year, the club will talk to the student body about how to be a buddy on the playground. This student led group is now a permanent part of our school. It was an amazing success. My daughter used it more than once. When Little V's friend "Mary" got a new best friend "Lexi", there was some conflict. Lexi did not like Little V and didn't want to play with her or let Mary play with her either. So, my Little V went and sat on the bench. Soon, fellow member "Carlos" came running up and listened to the problem. Then, they went together to talk to Lexi. With a neutral third party, the problem was quickly worked out. This is a way for kids to work their problems out on their own. This is kids supporting each other. It is amazing! The counselor wrote up what they did and submitted it for a Kansas Promising Practice Award. We won! We were then entered into the national award and we were selected as a 2014 Promising Practice award winner by the Character Education Partnership. This is what she wrote about the impact this has had on our school so far after just one year: "Students are becoming less worried about specific clicks of friends and are becoming more interested in helping out others. For example, instead of fighting over the soccer ball at recess, they are learning to teach each other how to play soccer. Because of this club, office referrals are going down as students are spending their energy on helping instead of hurting others. The more students see they have the peers on their side, they will feel less worried about recess, bullying and friendships; this will then lead to fewer students missing school (an increase in attendance rate) Daily, students are asking to join the buddy club and are excited to be a part of this movement. There for a strong sense of community and pride is being created in our school. " That, my friends makes this Mama so proud. She has already said she can't wait to plant a new Buddy Club at her next school. I can't wait to see her making a difference anywhere we go.
Monday, May 26, 2014
My military man crush Monday: Captain Pugh works hard, he travels all over the world, he misses so much to give us everything we could ever want/need. I love him and I am so proud to call him my husband.
Monday, May 12, 2014
So, we are getting ready to move later this year. It is our first real move as a military family. We have been so very lucky to stay home for all these years. Steven was in the reserves and between the deployments, schools and that recruiting tour that we do NOT talk about, we never had to move. My girls have thus far been only minutes away from both sets of grandparents, all of their aunts, uncles and cousins. The girls just had their first real deployment in 2011 and now their first move. I think it is the perfect one for our family. Only four hours away, a similarly sized town and similar climate. We can come home on weekends if we want/need to. We will be right by Tablerock, which means that family will probably want to come and visit us on occasion. I am a bit apprehensive. Transferring colleges right as I am ready to start a nursing program is scary. Transferring the kids to a new school makes this mama nervous. Yet, Steven has sacrificed so much to make sure we are comfortable and this is the best thing for his career right now. At this point, we are all excited and nervous. It is hard to predict the future but my girls are strong little ladies. We are going to rock this! New experiences and new places await. Remind me, I really need to tell my husband we prefer beaches over blizzards......
Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Monday, May 5, 2014
My husband's grandfather passed away this morning. I loved that man. He was one of the most intelligent people I ever met and he had a heart of gold. He treated me like one of the family from the moment we were introduced. He was a great husband who cared for his wife over 61 years. He was a writer, a photographer, an amazing cook, a veteran, a hard worker. He was an amazing storyteller, with a dry but impecable sense of humor. There are so many people who are going to miss him. I know that I will everyday.
Every few weeks my husband and I let our girls go spend the night with my parents. We then go on something called a date. For those of you who may not remember, that means you can eat dinner and have a few drinks without talking about boogers, playground drama, or Harry Potter. (Unless you want to) It is wonderful and something we have waited a long time to be able to do. The only thing missing was live music. We don't like going to movies all the time and I am not a big drinker. Sometimes it is nice to sit and talk, or enjoy a good band. Everywhere we travel has bars or small venues that always have live music. Wichita is a decent sized town with lots of great restaurants, shops and bars. Live music is a huge draw but, unfortunately, it is a lot harder to find here. We worked to find a list of good places before heading out last weekend. We found Larkspur downtown has a live jazz band from 5:30pm to 10:30pm on their patio in the summer. Hotel Old Town also has a jazz group playing in their lounge from 5:30 to 8:30pm. We also discovered an amazing duo called the Erin Alan Project. It is a small band that performs 60's, 70's and 80's classics with a few original pieces mixed in. Overall, it was a great time. We got a few suggestions for next time. Mike's Wine Dive and the Monarch. Where are your favorite places in town to go jam out? Music, people, music!
Thursday, May 1, 2014
My daughter is obsessed with Ellen. I do not know where she first heard about or saw her, but it is now a big deal. She wants to watch her show every day, she talks about her like they are besties, she discusses what would happen if she were ever on the show. It is funny. Little Miss started discovering just how much her and Ellen have in common. She loves to play pranks and could not believe that Ellen did too. She loves to dance, she loves animals. She is now showing me dance moves that she should try out before she goes on the show(like that is a certainty). She asked for Ellen underwear. She wants me to record her pranks so she can show Ellen. I feel like there are far worse celebrities she could fixate on. Ellen is a good person, with a good heart. She is funny and charismatic. If my daughter wants to work to become more like Ellen, I know I am ok with that.