December 26, 2012

It took a few weeks...

But I think the tragedy of what happened in Newtown, CT has sunk in for me.

When I heard about it, it was Scott, pointing to a CNN-tuned t.v. in a Burger King in Grand Cayman, saying, "Look, a school shooting."

I learned the basics through the news they broadcasted on the cruise ship that day and the next.  I saw facts and details on blogs, Twitter, etc.  I saw the safety letter my school district sent out to our faculty, staff, and parents.  But I didn't read too far into my school emails because I was just so thrilled to be in Pennsylvania (flu or not!) and wanted nothing to do with that state of Alaska.

But then, I spent some time with our niece last week.  She's 7.  First grade.  She lives in Pennsylvania.
And she's so smart!  Like, really smart!  (Like, smarter-than-some-of-my-4th-graders-smart...)
And she believes in Santa.  And she adores her Uncle Scott. And we opened presents early for Christmas. And she lets me fix her hair.  And she reads to me.

She glazed us a clay ornament.  The kid is 7, sees me twice a year, and she spells my name right.
And I started thinking...
"This is what those 20 kids were before Dec. 14: they were just like her."

I went shopping for an outfit for her.
Now I think, "Those kids won't get to wear their new Christmas clothes."

I watched her open gifts that had been purchased and wrapped weeks ago*. 
Now I think, "Those kids won't get to open their gifts."

Then I started reading about the kids.  And looking at their pictures.  It's something I advise you TO do and NOT TO do at the same time.  It's a sad process, but I couldn't stop.
I read every article I could find the other night.  
I thought about the teachers.  Would I jump on top of my students like this teacher did?  I don't know. How many of you could say you'd really do that?

Anyway, as I hugged Jordynn good-bye the other night, I thought about all those poor families.  I'm glad, really glad, that I was able to gain some perspective on this situation.

Some bloggers dedicated cookies and crafts to the victims at Sandy Hook last week.  I was out of town then, but I want to repost my favorite cookie from when I was 7 years old.  You should go make them with a kiddo today.

Chocolate and Peanut Butter No-Bake Cookies.

*Would you believe that we forgot her gifts? We had to buy her new ones (books, of course). Aunt-and-uncle-of-the-year, right?

Sharing at Walkabout Wednesday and Random Wednesday


  1. It was really devastating, those poor children and their families. I cried every day until the last funeral. I didn't really get into the Christmas spirit until the 23rd. I really tried for my kids and never let them see me cry for those poor lost babies. I just didn't want the boys to be afraid.

    It's sad but we talked to our kids a 1st and 3rd grader about school shootings. I told them they are very rare but I want them be prepared if such a thing ever happens. They didn't seem to be afraid just took what I said and went on their way. I know they say children are resilient but I just feel so helpless for those poor families. Like you mentioned they didn't open presents, have Christmas cookies, they will never graduate, have children of their own. Young teachers lost their lives just as it was getting good.

    I know God now is watching over them and their families and that is the only comforting thing for me.

    I hope you had a Merry Christmas!

  2. Those cookies look yummy! I am all about no-bake cookies.

  3. This post made me cry. I found out very small details towards the end of the school day. I didn't find out what really happened until I got to my mom's. I watched the news and could not stop crying. Going to school Monday after the shooting was beyond nerve wracking. My stomach was in knots. I had no clue what to expect from my students.

    The older students that knew what happened made cards for the families. It's so sad to think about the many things those children will never do now and to know the future of those teachers was so bright.

  4. I know Kristin...those families. I still ache for them, having a 7 year old almost makes it unbearable. :(


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