Thursday, December 29, 2016

It Takes a Village

It Takes  a Village

It was a crazy couple of weeks….both in school and at home.  A sinus infection pretty much rendered me useless. My wife picked up the slack on the homefront and the team at the ILC was all in to make great experiences happen for our students. I just want to say THANK YOU because it truly takes a village.  We've all heard that phrase before and if you are a parent I'm sure you agree. If you're a teacher I'm sure you're nodding yes. If you are successful in life I'm sure you've realized this as well. We can not do it alone. Behind every great idea...event….person….is a support system that often goes unnoticed.  This post is about recognizing those that did some great things around my life.  First…..the better half.... Amber Riley. For real ya’ll she is killing it.  Not only does she put up with me but she makes sure the needs of our children are met before her own. She continuously serves others not because we have so much to give but because she understands what it means to be in their shoes.

Second, the team at the ILC stepped up and planned activities for Elite Week while I was down and out.  They successfully planned activities for 300 students to make an impact.  One of our EDU students set up a Bundles of Joy clothes drives and adopted 55 students at an at risk inner city preschool. Before it was all said and done students and staff in our district funneled some 55 coats, gloves, hats, scarfs, and blankets for the preschool. Not too mention they also raised close to $300 for miscellaneous items. A Project HERO student raised close to a $1000 after starting her own nonprofit bake sale and GoFundMe page to support the loving memory of her grandmother.

Third, the local coffee shop (Coffee Connections), Corrie's Confections, a small group, and numerous friends for making the first Night of Joy a huge success. They helped recognize students that typically do not get recognized. Students that hold full time jobs to support their families through tough times. Students affected by adverse situations that many adults would buckle under. It amazes me how many students continue to succeed in school or even come to school when everything else in their life is complete chaos. They have true GRIT!

Fourth, to the many friends and family members that stepped up and helped out when we welcomed Baby G to our family. Yes...we are crazy. When most parents have 9 months to plan for a baby we literally had 9 hours.  A simple message to friends and by the time we came home from the hospital we had a house full of baby supplies and needs for us to make the transition a success. Little G is a miracle. Not sure how he made it the last nine months but we are grateful that God watched over him. As a family we all said YES to foster life. God placed that WHY on our hearts and it is a fire that burns like no other.  The need is great. We are all meant to serve a greater purpose.  Recognizing that is the hard part. He doesn't call the qualified but he qualifies the called.  As Mahatma Gandhi says, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” Getting lost is scary.  Not having all the answers is frightening. Not being in control is humbling. All signs tell you to NOT go. But by FAITH in the unseen we navigate the stormy seas. After all...if this 4.5 lb baby can overcome darkness then what excuse do we have. Let's all do our part to make an IMPACT and give praise to the One that makes the unimaginable reality.

It takes a village to make life meaningful. Find your tribe. Build each other up. Support each other in life and in achieving goals.

I Can Do Things You Cannot, You Can Do Things I Cannot; Together We Can Do Great Things.- Mother Teresa