Yesterday our first grade teachers had Grandparent’s Day. Many of our children do not live near their grandparents, but never fear, our grandparents who showed up to our classes on Friday morning rallied, to form cocoons of love around those who didn’t have grandparents attending. Delicious cookies and doughnuts were added to the mix, and of course… books! The aroma of cookies, happy students reading their cards and first sentences, was definitely is a great recipe for building community at the beginning of the year. I guess thanks to Hallmark for creating this new day with yet another reason to celebrate.
Today, on our flight to see our son Jeff, I opened the Spirit Airways magazine to the featured story about gourmet cookies making a come back. I really don’t think they were ever out of fashion, were they? Actually though, I think back to my family history. My sweet mom, a baker, she was not. Her own mom, my grandma, was a master with Swedish coffee cake, breads and Pepparkakor cookies, but baking was not an everyday occurrence. Both my mom and my grandma worked outside of the home, and pretty much viewed baking as frivolity, reserved only for holiday. So in my case, baking has skipped three generations.
My daughter however, grew up viewing cookies as a sign of love, she still does. Whenever we visited my husband’s farming side of the family they equated cookies and desserts as love on a plate. And finally a new baker was born in our family.
How did your grandparents show their love? When I think of my grandma she did it a little differently. When I arrived at her apartment in Chicago, we would first give hugs…which my austere grandma only reserved for my sisters and myself. We would always spy the green glass candy dish on her hutch. We knew not to ask right away, but eventually if we asked politely, she would let us pick our favorite Brach Sour Ball candy. When I see the dish on my piano I think about love, I think about community, I celebrate a relationship.
My own daughter loves the kitchen smells, loves her mixer, lives for smiles as friends and family samples her creations. I am like my grandma, a little sour and a little sweet, offering store-bought specials and treasure box prizes, and books to the children in my small groups. How do you build that connected community in your classrooms and your lives?
PS Sammie is coming for a visit from Ecuador next month. I think she might just remember our big bathtub, the jets and maybe the books…. don’t worry… I’m not handing out Sour Balls… yet.
Passing through Nebraska now…. just finishing this in the jet plane…. oooh I love to write, I love this habit…. thanks to Ruth and Stacey and all of you. I’m so thankful!