On October 14 at 8:15 a.m., Aimee, Diana and I loaded our new bus (purchased last Friday) and spent one hour driving less than 10 miles to pick up seven 2-year-olds, buckle them into seven brand new car seats and drive them to our Family Place therapeutic classrooms at First Baptist Church.
We anticipated that children would cry when they got on the bus and rolled away from their mommies. We had nothing but dry eyes on the bus, but there were plenty of moist mommy eyes as they entrusted us with their little ones. I asked many of the moms what they planned to do with their three hours of relief and most of them said go back to bed! These mommas are working so hard and are grateful for some “me time.”
While on the bus, Aimee pointed out interesting things we would drive by while Diana was blowing bubbles. The kids were squealing with delight and asking for “mo bubos!” As I carefully drove I had flashbacks of my days as a public school bus driver many, many moons ago. (By the way, we are looking for a volunteer driver if you know someone who might be interested.)
Straight for the toys!
When we finally made it to the classroom, Nancy (our intern from George Fox) had breakfast on the table. However, the kids went straight for the toys (thanks Hopscotch)! We finally got coats off and hands washed and then watched the kids figure out how to eat scrambled eggs with their little forks. Many of them were famished and kept asking for “mo cheese” and “meewk pwease.” It was a struggle to keep them at the table with the toys calling their names.
Have you ever wondered what a table full of flour and white play dough looks like when you mix it with 14 little hands? Think of Bing Crosby singing “White Christmas” and you’ve got a good picture of our new formerly brown rug. It has been christened.
“We will take turns.”
For the next two hours, you could hear the staff saying things like, “It looks like Luis is having a turn with the dump truck. You may have it when he is all done.” Or “The play dough is for the table, you may put the toy cookies in the oven.” Or even “You hurt him when you pushed him. We will take turns.” It was fantastic to see our qualified staff in action!
After a snack of bean burritos, carrots and water, the kids played outside and had beautiful weather! Next on our wish list will be some tricycles for them to use. They loved the toys outside and were simply carefree as they climbed the stairs and used the slide over and over!
Thanks to each of you!
We played outside and then made our way back to the new bus. I went to Hopscotch during class and used some of our “cash mob credit” to buy some window clings for the bus. The kids loved all the window decorations! We actually made it 10 minutes before they started tearing them off. A good investment I think. After an hour of driving kids home, we made it back to the class for clean up. Our hearts were as full as our carpet was dirty!
Thanks to each of you for all you have done to make today happen! We dedicate our white messy class today to you!