Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas!

From our family to yours...may you have a happy, HEALTHY Holiday...
Donny, Pam, John, Nick, Mere, Drew & Max (and of course Fort & JP)...

I KNOW Melissa is watching over all of her friends and family during the holidays... MERRY CHRISTMAS from Fort!

(Just a note...we're sending her balloons for her birthday again this year...
if you'd like to join us - Sunday, Jan. 2 @ 1:30 @ the cemetery. Bring a balloon!)

Christmas is about FRIENDS....here's to YOU Jackie!
Last year, our new principal at Moraine Meadows convinced the entire staff to register for the Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati. Some did the 5K, some did the half marathon and a couple did the full marathon. I thought it would be a good idea to do it for a good cause...and we had a GREAT CAUSE right there at Moraine Meadows. Our second grade teacher had been diagnosed with cancer in the fall of last year, so we asked her where she wanted the proceeds to be donated...Her first choice was the library at MM. When we were closed, she wanted the money to go for books to be donated to Children's Hospital in Dayton (she's a READING teacher!). We raised almost $1500! In the fall Jackie and Rodney purchased books with half the money (which Jackie & I delivered in the fall). She recently gave me a check for the other half - close to $800 -plus the RUBI GIRLS raised another $500 and Southdale students and staff (where Jackie & Josh are now teaching) raised another $200 in addition to books (about 100) that were donated. WELL...we went shopping yesterday. Books and Co. gave us the educator's discount and we were able to purchse 160 MORE books to go to Children's!!!! We had so much fun. And we're hoping that Jackie will be up to it to help deliver the books after we put bookplates in each book "DONATED in Honor of Jackie...A Most Excellent Teacher!" What a great feeling it will be to deliver MORE books! WE LOVE YOU JACKIE!!!!!

Rodney and me with some of the books...

Josh and Deb with some of the books...

Josh holding the receipt for the books we bought!

The BEST gift for us....

A friend of Melissa's sent me the link to this on FB today (didn't get a chance to read the paper today - had Drew & Max overnight and all day today...thanks for sharing it with me Chelsea!)
There is not much I want or need (only ONE thing...can't have that), and this is GREAT advice:

Dear Abby:
My beautiful 20-year-old daughter was killed in a car accident. I am writing this not only for myself, but for all parents who have lost a child, and to all of the wonderful people who asked, "What can I do for you?"

At the time there wasn't much anyone could do to help, but after two years I have an answer: Accept me for who I am now.

When Rachel came into my life, it changed me profoundly. Losing her did the same. Her father and I work hard to honor her memory, but we will never "get over it" to the degree of being who we were before. I am different now. In some ways -- I think -- better. I am kinder, more patient, more appreciative of small things, but I am not as outgoing nor as quick to laugh.

I know people mean well when they encourage me to get on with my life, but this is my life. My priorities have changed. My expectations of what my future will hold have changed. Please extend to me again the offer of "anything I can do" and, please, accept me as I am now. -- DIFFERENT NOW IN RIVERVIEW, FLA.

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