Educators maintain close bonds. That was particularly evident yesterday at Farmin-Stidwell Elementary School when the staff and a host of retired staff members gathered to bid adieu to four upcoming retired teachers: Trudy Weiden, Pam Lippi, Krista Eberley and Laurie Tibbs (my sister).
Bill and I attended and totally enjoyed every minute as we visited with several of the schools retirees who had come back to honor their former colleagues.
We also sat back and listened to some wonderful stories highlighting the greatness of each honored teacher. Pretty amazing people and educators, to say the least.
One experienced retiree, who had taught kindergaarten for years, told us that she wore her hair pulled back in a French braid for yesterday's celebration because Laurie had taught her the technique of how to braid her hair in that fashion.
It's the little things that often mean the most, and I'm sure Laurie was very touched by Susie Haskins' gesture. It also demonstrated clearly how we never know, as educators, what fleeting moment of teaching can leave a lasting impression on the recipient.
Laurie's teammate at Farmin-Stidwell, for the past several years since the departure of Colleen Filipowski, has been Lisa Greene. As always, Lisa eloquently reflected on the impact Laurie and other had had on her as a teacher.
She told of a recurring dream where she goes to her classroom and finds a giant hole in the middle of the room. Lisa concluded yesterday that she has finally figured out the meaning of that hole. It's reflects the loss when teachers like Laurie and Colleen and others go on their way and leave her behind.
Lisa knows that her efforts in the classroom will continue, but the void left by retirement of her colleagues will always be there.
It was a great celebration with a potluck feast, special awards and a pleasant blend of obvious lifelong friendships among present and former the Farmin-Stidwell teaching family.
This next Monday, Bill and I will attend another celebration, honoring our sister Barbara who is also retiring, along with two other colleagues. I imagine we'll see other retirees in attendance as well as the Sandpoint High School staff.
Once again, I'm sure it will be a fun, lively and very meaningful good bye to some folks who have given so much for the benefit of our youth.
Thanks to all retiring teachers in our community, and welcome to the club of those who came before you. It's a good gig, but I'm willing to bet that most of us can say we never really stop teaching.
We just don't have bells to tell us when to start and when to finish.
|My sister Laurie and her teaching teammate Lisa.|
|Pam Lippi and Trudy Weiden.|
|Former Farmin-Stidwell principal Anne and retiree Krista Eberley, who has 38 years of teaching to her credit.|
|Fun reminders with which educators can identify.|
|Anne tells another story on Pam.|
|Lisa reflects on the void left by retirees.|
|Head brat man cooks up some Wood's Meats delights.|
|Susie Haskins and Colleen Filipowski share a story or two.|
|Art teacher Sharon busy with her passion as she listens to the stories.|
|Seasoned retirees Pauline and Anne.|
|On my way home from the retirement party, I passed by yards alive with floral color.|