Saturday, August 10, 2013

Seven States Away.....But We Are Never That Far

My most favorite time over the summer was going to the east coast to visit our New Hampshire family....

Steve, Suzy, Luc, Nic, and Noelle Gagnon.
They live in one of the most beautiful, peaceful places I have ever been.....Portsmouth, which was founded in the 1600's. 
It is close to the ocean, Maine, and all kinds of fun and amazing places.  
This story starts in February of 2011 when Steve and I met on Twitter.  
We became friends instantly and started connecting our classes in New Hampshire and Iowa.

Steve wrote about our first connections on his blog Rivermouth Teacher, A Full Circle
And the best part....we connected our own children and families to each other through nighttime Skype calls....
 breakfasts in Philly during ISTE....
and the best airport taxi service in Boston before the BLC Conference.  
In the fall of 2011, Steve and his family came to Iowa for their first visit.  He spent the week at school with me, along with Nic and Luc for a little of the time too.  We even Skyped back to New Hampshire into his classroom.  His students were so excited to see him in Mrs. Miller's library in Iowa.  

You can read all about their visit at this post, An Amazing Visit.
So this summer my family came to see them.  Hagan and I flew from Texas to Boston the week before the BLC Conference.  Steve and the kids picked us up.....They picked up right where they left off.
Hagan had never been to the ocean or played at a sandy beach like this so Steve, Suzy, and the kids taught him all kinds of things.  
They took us to Maine to the Nubble Lighthouse.  The kids showed Hagan and I how to hum and make a snail come out of its shell.
My parents Paul and Rhonda also joined us on our trip.  They drove out from Iowa. When Steve and his family visited Iowa we took them to mom and dad's farm so they have also become friends.  It was very special having them with all of us.
Last summer I went to Portsmouth and stayed for a few days after BLC.  The kids were in a play in the park and I met Steve's lovely mom that night.

This year it was fun to have our parents meet when we all went to the play Annie in the park.
Robbie came out later in the week and loved all of the fun in New England too.  Especially being on the bottom bunk at the USS Albacore....
 the harbor cruise...
and holding a starfish. 
I spent the last day by myself with Steve, Suzy, and the kids in Ogunquit, Maine before heading onto Minnesota for a conference.  

It was so beautiful...I love the sound and smells the ocean brings. 

And I so love the memories it brought this summer.  
This last week, school started for me at Van Meter.  

Steve and I talked a lot about ideas for collaboration this year so we kicked it off the first day back by connecting with my friend and 5th grade teacher, Kate Goodwin.  
We are planning to blog together, Skype, and do a lot of creating, collaborating, and connecting throughout the year.  I can't wait! 
Back in 2011, Steve and I also started a blog together called Seven States Away.  We must admit we haven't posted for quite awhile but we are anxious to start sharing our adventures on here again this year. 
And even though we are seven states away, it is never that far with all these great ways we find to connect our students, families, and to each other.

Thank you my dear east coast family.  I love you and can't wait until next time.

1 comment:

  1. I've been trying to figure out what to write since I saw this post. Twelve hours later all I can come up with is that I love my Iowa family. You captured our time together this summer perfectly, and I can't wait until we're all together again. :)