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An Open Letter to You on My Birthday
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Sometimes in life it feels like we are all running frantically on hamster wheels, lined up in a row, shouting hey to each other occasionally, or stopping for a few seconds of weekend, then back up and going, going, going. It’s easy to stay on our self-contained hamster-wheel-lives, but when someone steps off their wheel to touch my life, that connection sparks light, love,...

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13 Reasons Why–A Book Review
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“You have to read it, Mrs. Haupt!”  The student insisted I borrow the book, against my protestations that end-of-year duties had me buried.  It sat on my desk for weeks, and several students tried to borrow it throughout the duration of the school year. The book 13 Reasons Why has stirred up a lot of conversations lately, due to the recent Netflix series based...

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Not a Victory March
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I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch Love is not a victory march It’s a cold and it’s a broken hallelujah So much love for this song.  Especially Pentatonix version. I’ve been thinking lately about how much different love is from what both what we want it to be and what is portrayed in media.  I remember one time when an acquaintance was...

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Mental Health May
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She just disappeared from school one day.  She had always been quiet in class, but her absence spoke loudly to me. She wasn’t someone I would have been concerned about struggling with emotions.   But I should have been concerned. But it’s the quiet ones you have to watch. And the ones who smile every day. And the ones who act normal. And the...

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The Fear of Making Mistakes
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Last night, Abby and I attended a paint night for Mother’s Day. The idea behind the paint nights is that someone who is actually good at painting teaches you how to paint your picture step-by-step to make it easier for us non-artists.  It’s pricey, but it is a fun and relaxing experience and you come away with a product you made yourself.  It’s my...

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Chasing Down Grateful
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It’s that time of year. Students are grumpy and unmotivated. Teachers are tired of students’ annoying behaviors that have been going on all.year.long. Last week, I had spent some time planning a class activity I thought the students would enjoy. Tim helped me think through it. As we discussed it later and the lack of enthusiasm, he said, “Man, I really thought they would...

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Raising Cain
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Raising Cain

Apr 25, 2017 by

I feel sorry for Cain. he leaned over and whispered it to me near the end of the sermon which anyone watching would have assumed he was not listening to at all.  In typical fashion, he wiggled and wormed around in his seat doing everything but sitting up and focusing. Cain was trying, he loud-whispered, he just didn’t know. Well, I whispered back, Daddy...

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Blooming
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Blooming

Apr 9, 2017 by

Abby blooms up before me like a lily, talking like a miniature adult,  sponging up everything I say, asking me why and what’s that mean? All this as I look every night in the mirror to see more wrinkles, just a touch of silver at the hairline. Her moon waxes as mine begins to wane; she’ll tower over me before long. Ben comes to...

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The Stumbling, Humbling Job of Working with Students (teenagers)
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I spend roughly eight hours five days a week with teenagers.  This is my job as a high school English teacher.  I love my job and it is rewarding, but I do have some observations about working with teenagers. It’s often thankless.   Teenagers don’t say thank you for speaking truth into their lives.  I was a pretty decent teenager: no rebellion, good grades,...

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All Shall Be Well
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“The novel we sit down to write, and the one we end up writing may be very different, just as the Jesus we grasp and the Jesus who grasps us may also differ.”  Madeleine L’Engle, Walking On Water   “When we were children, we used to think that when we were grown-up we would no longer be vulnerable. But to grow up is to...

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Write.
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Write.

Jun 8, 2016 by

I miss writing. I believe a small kind of joy erupts every time you express yourself in a creative act–from coloring a picture as a four year old to choosing an outfit as an eight year old.  These acts of creativity reveal to ourselves more fully who we are–and to others, too.  That’s the vulnerable part.  When my children come to show me their...

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Thin Places
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Thin Places

Mar 28, 2016 by

The bell was about to ring in 45 seconds as I hot-glued my sandal strap into place where it had disconnected from the ankle strap. It was an apt metaphor for how I felt going into the school day—glued together, holding on by a string, getting by.  We had received some bad news about a close family member, cancer, and the tears kept welling...

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Things I Love Right Now
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How Susanna thinks milk is called “milk-please,” ie: “Mommy, you get me some milk-please?” and “Mommy? You got my milk-please?” How she calls Dora “Da-Da-Dora” because I tried to get her to pronounce the first letter one time.  And how she yells out all the Spanish words at the tv when Dora prompts her to. ABAJO!  (She watches Dora with such unblinking intensity that...

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In Lieu of a Christmas Card
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Dear friends and family, Christmas cards are not in the mail. We love you and you are all worth a stamp, but we simply cannot do cards. Maybe when everyone is out of diapers? Nah, probably not even then. Man, it’s been a year of change. In March, I was spending every day with my two youngest babies, drinking coffee in my pjs until...

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It’s Hard to Be Tim
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This morning I wandered around in a sleepy state looking for my cell phone. After five minutes, I gave up, made a cup of coffee, and opened up my computer instead. A facebook message awaited me from Tim, reminding me I have nursery duty and informing me that my phone was on his car this morning when he drove to church. When he stopped...

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How Being a Teacher Has Made Me a Better Mom
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  I recently learned of some heavy heartache a student of mine is carrying quietly upon his shoulders along with his backpack and homework. I felt utterly hopeless to help with his burden. I can’t control the variables of my students’ lives, but I can write the story of my own family. When I returned to teaching after eight years as a stay-at-home mom,...

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