Monday, June 21, 2010

Teacher Gifts

You know the saying, “What do you get the person who has everything?” My predicament is, “What do I get the teacher who had Madeline for 2 years?” To say that he is a saint is an understatement. This year alone has been incredibly trying and by incredibly I mean mind-boggling. Well, I have been thinking about this for a while now and finally figured it out! He had Madeline for a total of 20 months, so I got him 20 containers of alcohol! I kept joking throughout the year that she drives me to drink, etc, so I thought it was a fitting gift. I know he likes beer so I went to a super cool Beer store in Portland where I politely asked the guru to please pick out whatever is good, because I have no knowledge of this particular area. So the guy took me around the store and helped me choose (by helped I mean he did it) 18 different kinds of beer. For the other two months I decided that I should ramp it up a notch. You see, January was a rough month so I thought he deserved more than a beer for that particular portion. I found a great Russian vodka from St. Petersburg (considering Madeline is from St. Petersburg, I thought it was a tad funny). Lastly this month- since this is the end of his tenure with Madeline I gave him a bottle of Champagne. What can I say? If I can’t have a sense of humor about it all you would probably find me curled up in the fetal position in a dark alley. Well, this is not where it ends. I tied a little note to the top of each bottle saying one of the reasons he “earned” it. Here is what I came up with:

1. January 2010- enough said (this was tied to the bottle of vodka- it really was a hard month).

2. For painting Madeline’s nails to help her stop sucking on her fingers. Hey, we tried!

3. For all of the extended bathroom breaks.

4. For all of the visual schedules.

5. For all of the secret signals.

6. For trying everything- literally.

7. For all the long emails.

8. For all the bad words I know you wanted to say, but didn’t.

9. For all the calls.

10. For Madeline’s desk- I don’t know where to begin or end.

11. Transitions (this was tied to a bottle of beer with an eight ball on it- you never knew how they would go from day to day)

12. For all of the outbursts.

13. For all of the really really really sharpened pencils.

14. For all of the teacher questionnaires.

15. For all of the behavior plans.

16. For the days I forgot to give her her meds.

17. For all the times Madeline went MIA/Rogue

18. For listening intently and still not having any idea what she is talking about.

19. For all the IEP meetings.

20. June 2010! (this was tied to the bottle of champagne)

I know that these are not all self-explanatory, but you get the idea.

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It was a fun gift to make- I must say. I love using that 1/1000th of my brain that is actually creative and can sometimes come up with stuff like that. It is rare, but can happen. The best part was his reaction. Either he is a really good actor or he really liked it. Apparently, when his wife saw it she asked, “is this from Madeline’s parents?” If that does not tell you how much of an impact on his life she has been I don’t know what will. It was nice to actually be honest about how trying these last two years were, but to also hear how much he loves Madeline and really cares about her success is wonderful.


  1. That is a really thoughtful and creative gift!
    I saw M on Sunday and said, "oh, YOU'RE Madeline Pond! I've heard about you!"
    "You have?? What did you hear?" she asked, honored.
    "I heard that you are REALLY smart!" I replied.
    "Why yes, I am!" she said, matter-of-factly, and returned her attention to Sunday School.

    I think I like that girl! ;)

  2. Madeline Pond. She is SUCH a sensation! I love that girl....but honestly, wouldn't trade places with her teacher! Kudos to his awesomeness! Additional kudos to your amazing, genius, inspiring gift creativity! You. ROCK. Extra cookies for you next drop-off ;)