Friday, June 13, 2008

Reunions--Class and Family

It doesn't get any better than this: I had the whole family--my children and grandchildren--together in the house at the same time. Laura was here for her tenth class reunion (South Caldwell High School Class of 1998).
Ben came from Chapel Hill, where he's stayed to work this summer, and John was here too. After a too-long spell without seeing them right after Stuart was born, I've been fortunate this summer. I visited right after school was out, then we joined them in Atlanta. Avery spent a week here, then John and I returned her to her parents. Then we had them here with us. The visit was a quick one, but we had fun. Laura and the kids went to her class picnic while Chad and Dick played golf. We kept the kids while they attended the evening reunion. We managed to get two kids in bed asleep before they returned. Just like riding a bike. . . .

Laura's class was the first group of seniors I taught at SCHS. That spring I had my graduates to write letters to themselves for ten years later. I wish I'd had the fall semester seniors to write too. I had also saved some of their "graduation papers," the first goal-setting paper of the year, in which they were to describe some of their hopes, dreams, and fears for graduation and beyond. Laura handed them out, and she said there were a few tears--happy ones, fortunately. Now I have at least ten more years of letters in boxes in my garage. I will have to keep up with reunion plans via the website that has been passed along from class to class. My last year at South, a few of the seniors put five-dollar bills in their letters--in case they are broke in ten years. That puts an added burden on me to follow through!

I picked up a couple of gift books for graduates that I plan to read first before passing on: What Next? by Ann Patchett and Letter to Their Younger Selves by a group of twenty- and thirty-somethings. I still find Anna Quindlen's Short Guide to a Happy Life a good choice too.

Stay tuned for reports on my Chicago trip (and reading matters) and the Father's Day report.


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