to my team:

I had no idea when I walked into Vista for the first time that I would be given such a gift. I had no idea what was in store for me as a new teacher. I had no idea just how deeply these people would change the way I understand this profession.

In these two years, I have been blessed with the best team I could have asked for, and a far better team than I could have ever dreamt up. The six of us are messy and weird and wonderful and I would not trade them or these years for the world.

I have learned more from each of them in these two years than in all my years of formal education. Bouwhuis, you teach me about fierce loyalty and putting students first even when it’s difficult. Rodgers, you teach me about embracing the strangeness of this life. Pendell, you show me what it looks like to support teammates while also letting them be themselves. Wanamaker, you show me how to be strong and silly and strange, all at once. And Munster, you lead by example by loving and believing in your students and peers more deeply than anyone I have ever known.

You five strange and wonderful humans have taught me about education, rolling with the punches, and the value of a well-placed cuss word (among other things) and for that, I am forever grateful. I am better, wilder, and stronger because of you. This team is the best there is, and (in my humble opinion) the best there ever will be.

My last sentiment doesn’t belong on the internet. See Danielle’s post-its for reference.

BOOM! Always & forever.