Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Sharing the Love

GRIN, the not-for-profit foundation I started after Christina-Taylor was murdered and I was shot at Gabby Giffords' Congress On Your Corner event, is intertwined with the Amphi School District.  It was CTG's school district, it's the district which invited me to judge children's photographs, it's the district to which I pay taxes and which educates the people who will populate the world I inhabit.

I have a vested interest in its success.  I'm going to need the doctors and lawyers and plumbers and electricians and clerks they are teaching.  If they don't do well - on both sides of the equation - my quality of life will suffer.  That's the practical reason, but not the most important one.

The average salary in the District is $38,662; it took a state wide election to give them a raise.  They buy their own crayons and stickers and markers and books for the classroom library.  They come early, they stay late, they act as nutritionist and fashion consultant and judge and jury in their free time.  I'm not going near the fact that guns on campus are coming soon to a school near me.....

So, on the Monday before classes start, when there are meetings and planning sessions and time spent putting up posters and name tags and schedules, GRIN brings treats.

I set the alarm, located the schools on Google Maps (and printed it out... which turned out to be a smart move since my phone died on the way to my first stop), and was in my friendly, neighborhood Albertson's by 7:30 in the morning.

Vera, the Grocery Manager, has been collecting goodies for me for years.  She never wants her picture taken; this year she put her associate in front of my lens.

Look at that cart, denizens.

There were lemon creme and key lime and berry pies.  There was a sheet cake and decorated cupcakes, muffins and donut holes and croissants and sweet breads.  There were boxes of donuts and there was a triple layer strawberry shortcake that was just begging to be taken to my house and devoured.

Instead, I loaded the coolers I'd remembered to stack in the back of the Uv, and drove to Rio Vista Elementary school.  There, I off-loaded supplies for 3 elementary schools into the trunk of a college sorority sister; some ties really do bind.  She took them to the central piece of the map, and I drove on to pick up Scarlett and drop off the rest.

Nine schools received Welcome Back to School Love Fest treats.  Nine sets of very surprised and happy employees gave us many more than nine sets of hugs and thanks and blessings.

It was a very nice way to start the day.


  1. I'm taking donuts to the office staff today and special chocolate covered almonds to the first grade teachers with whom I work. Seems as though we just said goodbye for the summer.

  2. I'm going to make a donation to GRIN.

    It really upsets me when teachers have to use their own money to buy supplies. Even in my county, teachers do this. That's why I always give a gift card at the beginning of the year to my kids teachers.

    We don't start school until the 29th. Still wish we started after Labor Day. That's actually the law in our state, but our county always applies for an exception due to snow days. At least we build them in so we aren't having to go to school near the end of June.

    Thanks for reminding us too all the good that GRIN does.

    Megan xxx

  3. Thank you for all you do for our schools! We are blessed to know you and I am a better person for knowing you! I love my Gram Suzi!! Tanya

    1. It was a pleasure to make your school #10 on the hit parade!! You make me be all I can be, and more, because you see it in me. How lucky those kids are to have you as their principal. <3
      aka Grandma Suzi


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