Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Aniya: Scuse me... (poke, poke in my side) What's your name again?
Me: Miss Shannon
Aniya: Miss Shannon, you are very beautiful.

Again... why I teach preschool :)

Monday, December 08, 2008

growing up...

I made a comment on Friday to a little boy that I thought he'd grown 5 inches since I last saw him... and another little girl, Katie, heard the comment and as we walked out of music class she says to me,

Miss Shannon, I'm growing so much I have to limbo to get out the door.

The doors are 10 feet tall :) wishful thinking dear...i feel ya.

Friday, December 05, 2008

the end of a class

Today was my last day at practicum for this semester... I've loved my kids on Fridays. They are 16 wild ones with beautiful imaginations.

Some favorite quotes from the last day:

I was "painting" with shaving cream with Merritt... I asked her, "What does it smell like Mer?"
Merritt: (thinks...thinks...thinks....) CLOUDS!

Then I was reading a book called I Heard Said the Bird to Kiki... which obviously is about rhyming... and as I was pointing out some words that rhymed like bird, heard, word... Kiki shouts with glee, "TURD!"

This. Is. Why. I. Love. Preschool.

Thursday, December 04, 2008


Today we had Snowman Festival... its our Winter Carnival for Jumpstart...

picture 80 4 year olds and their enthusiastic and slightly anxious teachers descending upon UVA's campus to spend two hours downing hot chocolate as fast as it can cool, pouring glitter on glue soaked pinecones, chucking balls at an unfortunate snowman, and singing songs we made up on the fly...

then picture all of us Corps Members laying on the floor in delighted exhaustion.

it was fabulous.

My favorite quote of the day was as I was leading a group of students into the building and I was talking to two little boys.

Marlo: My birthday!
Me: When's your birthday?
Me: No way! Today is your birthday?
Adrian: No, Miss Bremer... it's RIGHT NOW, not today.

:) that made my Right Now.

Monday, December 01, 2008



About two years ago I had the privilege of walking home with a man named Tommy. He told me was from North Carolina, that he loved Jesus and that he just had a problem with drinking. That was my first introduction to a man with a kind smile who I continued to catch up with on various street corners around Charlottesville, until recently.

Our church, Trinity Presbyterian, has gotten in the wonderful habit of displaying art and photographs and having openings for the different exhibits. This month, we have the privilege of hanging a handful of James Erickson's paintings of homeless men. James paints on HUGE pieces of cardboard, about 15' by 10', honoring these men and the beauty of their lives by making their portraits enormous... too big to be passed by or ignored, as we so often do on the corner.

Last week at the opening, I stood in the center of the gallery area just turning, turning, turning... in awe and in love with what I saw. James didn't just paint these men. He knows them. And he brought them to Trinity for the opening! Beside each man's portrait was a letter he had written to James... and beside that letter stood the men themselves. It was a cold night, and everyone was mingling without removing their coats and hats... so to be honest I had a hard time picking out who was homeless and who was a normal figure in the church.... which was BEAUTIFUL and as it should be. Fewer categories being formed, more stories being told.

I was getting ready to leave, when I came around the corner and there was the biggest of all the paintings. It hung from ceiling to floor in the entry to the worship room, full of color and life. Gentleness, humility, brokenness, and beauty. Tommy Parker. I stopped, and smiled. There was my friend!

I wondered why he wasn't present that night... but figured I'd see him around town.

Then a friend informed me that Tommy had passed away in October, and I got to read the end of his story here: http://commongroundsonline.typepad.com/common_grounds_online/2008/11/in-memory-of-to.html

I am thankful to whoever provided him a bed to rest in, and to James for making his smile larger than life. And to Tommy, for introducing himself.

Merry Christmas?

Chris was playing with some farm animal figurines this morning. He had them all lined up and grouped by type of animal... I wandered over and we were having a grand ole time making animal noises together.

Chris decided that since we went on a fieldtrip to a farm to see animals, the animals were coming on a fieldtrip to see us at school!

One of the cows fell over, and I said, "Uhoh, Chris... what happened to the cow?"

Chris replied, "Oh, somebody shot it. Santa's not gonna be happy that someone shot his cow."


After recess (a chilly 35 degrees) the adults in the classroom were making some tea. Jaqueline asked, "what's that?" and we explained that it was tea. She said, "My mama drinks that, but it's black." And we said, "Oh, is it tea or is it coffee?"

Jaqueline replied, "She drinks coffee! But everytime it makes her go to the bathroom bad."