I had a great birthday! My day started with waking up to streamers and balloons from my roommates, and Nicole made breakfast (chocolate chip pancakes) for us and some friends. Yum. When I got to school, here's what I saw:
Last week sometime, my students enlisted the help of another teacher and the custodian, and I guess they just assigned people what they needed to bring. They had Capri-Suns, cupcakes, an array of chips, candy, and popcorn. I got balloons, silk flowers, a plastic vase, and quite a few cards. So sweet :-) It was a very interesting balance to try to show my students that I was very thankful and that I thought it was so sweet, but that I also still needed to discipline the kids that tried to take advantage of the fact that it seemed to be a "fun day" from the beginning. That was not easy, but it worked out okay. There were only a few kids who pushed the limit, and for the most part, everyone was in a great mood, and it was a great day.
After school, I came home and my roommates had invited my friend Cary over, and we all ate Lilly's Pizza. Yum. When I went to Community Group, we all stood around outside (because today was SO amazing outside... 75 degrees!). When we went inside, they had arranged some brownies and ice cream, along with a lovely picture of me:
This all started when Cary and her husband Jason decided to get rid of a large picture of him at our community group's Christmas gift exchange. It has been passed around a few times, and now I get to decide who the next recipient is, and I get to put their face on it! Fun. Now I just have to find a place for it until then. Maybe on my desk at school....
I am thankful for all my wonderful friends and family who called and wished me a happy birthday. I have really been missing my mom these past few weeks, and this morning I found myself feeling an overwhelming sadness, even in the midst of such wonderful people and blessings. I know it's not a bad thing for me to miss my mom, but I am thankful that God showed me that if I focused on how sad I was today, I would miss out on the joy of seeing the family of God care for me and love me. It was a conscious fight all day long to choose to focus on the here and now instead of on what I don't have, but I am thankful that God showed it to me first thing and helped me all day.
"What do you have that you did not receive?" 1 Corinthians 4:7
Thank you, God, for the many undeserved blessings you showered down on me today!