Sometimes friends come from unexpected places.
The girls and I often visit "Great" (my grandma, who is now 94!) at her assisted living place. She is now in the memory care area, which is much smaller section of the facility. We have gotten to know the residents a lot more than we could when she was in the regular area. The people all just light up when the kids come to visit. Everyone will be slumped over in their wheelchairs, eyes closed, but when the girls walk in, it is party time!
Anastasia had the great idea that they should all wear their Halloween costumes and visit Great today. So I figured that even though it was a "school day", visiting Great certainly counted as learning to think of others, which is just as important as fractions. So off we went.
Getting ready took half the day (can you believe I actually found a barrette to match her costume?)
This dragon costume is practically an antique by now and has been worn by several of the other kids.
Catherine made it quite clear that she was not a princess, but a queen because queens have all the power over the kingdom. She also told Francesca that she was a princess and princesses have to obey the queen.
Anastasia is Cleopatra and Isabella is a "water fairy" (her own invention)
Victoria loves to come visit and they love her. She isn't the least bit shy. She holds onto everyone's hands and they just melt. This is our friend, Jean.
And this is Milly. She looked so sad and vacant when we first came in. She actually reminds me of the way Victoria used to be in the orphanage. Victoria immediately brought a smile to her face. Milly started singing to Victoria. I think Milly just needed to know she was still needed and that someone cared. The irony is not lost on me that only 17 months ago, Victoria was the one who needed to know what love is and now she is spreading the love around to everyone she meets.
This is Timmy. She just recently moved to the memory care section. She can still walk around independently and I really think she knows what she doesn't know, if that makes sense. She has been really down lately. Anastasia was telling her all about our upcoming Halloween party.
Victoria was still cruising around the room, working her magic.
Not too long ago the doctor's said Victoria wouldn't walk and now she is helping someone else to get around.
Francesca was a little shy at first, but once we brought out the balloons, she joined in.
A little music to pep everyone up.
Isabella figured out a craft project we could all do. Stickers! Who doesn't love stickers?
No one around here ever seems to notice that Francesca's hands.
This is Sue. At first, she didn't want to do the sticker project, but when you have kids shoving stickers at you, you kind of have no choice but to get with the program. She was really proud of her creation.
This is another Jean. She is one of my favorites. She calls everyone "honey bunny." She has seven children!
Brenda really loved Anastasia. She kept holding her hand and saying, "thank you so much for coming."
Victoria got really hot in her dragon costume, so she want for the natural look. She is with Great here.
I kind of didn't want to leave. We all felt surrounded in love. Who knew we would make such good friends with people over 90 years older than Victoria.
I sort of felt like that song from "Cheers".
"You wanna go where everybody knows your name.... and they're always glad you came."
(actually, no one here even knows our name, but it doesn't matter at all!)
Definitely, a very good school day!