I don't expect students to give me gifts at the end of the year, but sometimes, they do. Often, it is a flower, sometimes a hanging basket, or another flower to plant among my other annuals. The best ones are the perennials though. I tuck these flowers into the bed along my patio, a hodgepodge of mismatched flowers from years gone by, a reminder to me of each student who gave me those gorgeous gifts years ago. My yard is full of flower beds, rock gardens, perennials spilling over ponds and streams, all my "pretties" I've planted and tended with care and thought. But somehow, the mismatched beds of student gifts are always my favorite.
This morning I woke up to a yard sparkling from fresh rain, and an incredible red lily opening in that bed. This plant was given to me 2 years ago by a young man, I am certain, picked out by his mom. Kyle was a memorable kid, funny, immature in that charming 7th grade way, smart. The kind of kid who drives you crazy at the time, but that you remember always having a smile on his face. He was always in the center of whatever goofiness was going on, but easy to rein back in. He was the kind of young man you knew was destined to do something innovative someday.
So this morning, I blog in thanks to Kyle and all the others who have given me those lasting gifts of beauty for my yard. I love to anticipate those blooms every year, remembering you and your classmates. Lilies here and there, an array of spectacular colors, a metal pink flower made in metals class by a group of girls, dianthus that spreads and spreads, various bulbs of early spring bloomers, thank you to all who've made my garden a memory of the job I love.
NOW.........Won't you all please come over and weed for me??