I would like to extend Thanksgiving blessings to you all. I want to thank you for your support and contributions and donations to Leesburg Open Arms over the year.
With our Thanksgiving theme this week the children will be learning about how the pilgrims came to the United States and how they made friends with the Native American Indians and how the first Thanksgiving came about.
With our shortened week there will be no Chapel time.
LOA events for November and December:
- Our Thanksgiving Feast Days will be on Monday, November 24th for our downstairs classes (held in the classes) and November 25th for our upstairs classes (held in the Sanctuary). For the upstairs classes we are looking for parent volunteers to help serve the children in the Sanctuary at 11:30 AM. Please let your child's teacher know if you will be able to assist.
- For Thanksgiving school closings, LCPS will be closed on Wednesday through Friday, November 26th to 28th; LOA will be closed on the 27th and 28th only.
- Spirit Night will be on Tuesday December 2nd; it will be pizza and ice cream but more details to follow.
- The Leesburg Christmas Choir will be performing again at the Leesburg Christmas Tree Lighting on Friday, December 5th.
- We will have our Christmas Around the World event on December 11th and 12th.
- The Christmas Music Programs for our 2-year-olds through Kindergarten will be at LOA on December 15th through 18th. More details are below.
- Our Happy Birthday Jesus Parties will be on Friday, December 19th. Teachers are requesting donations for decorations for the cakes. Please check with your child's teacher for details.
- For the Christmas holidays at LOA we will be closing at 12 Noon on Christmas Eve, Wednesday, December 24th and we are closed on Christmas Day and the day after (Boxing Day), Thursday and Friday, December 25th and 26th.
I would like to thank everyone who helped and contributed to the Operation Christmas Child through the Samaritan's Purse organization. We assembled 34 shoe boxes which will be sent all over the World. Each box has a tracking barcode which will enable us to know which country or areas the boxes are sent to. As I receive that information I will let you all know.
Here is the schedule for the Children's Christmas Music Program starting on December 15th through the 18th:
- 12/15: Monkeys at 3:00 PM in their classroom
- 12/15: Toucans at 3:30 PM in their classroom
- 12/16: Jellyfish, Manatees and Sea Turtles at 3:00 PM in the Sanctuary
- 12/17: Dolphins and Seagulls at 3:00 PM in the Sanctuary
- 12/18: Owls and AM Enrichment Kindergarten Seahorses at 9:30 AM in the Sanctuary
- 12/18: Sea Stars and PM Kindergarten Enrichment Seahorses at 2:30 PM in the Sanctuary.
For the 2's and 3's please dress your children in something festive and comfortable. For the 4's and Kindergarten please dress in something comfortable that can be worn under a costume; colors can be determined based on costume selection. Please check with your child's teacher.
- Ms Alicia has left LOA. She was the Lead Teacher in the Koalas class and left LOA to focus more of her efforts on furthering her education. We wish her all the best for the future.
- Ms Faith will be taking over as Lead Teacher in the Koalas on a temporary basis.
White House Ornaments are still for sale at the Front Desk. The 2014 Official White House Christmas Ornament honors President Warren G. Harding, who served as the 29th president of the U.S. from 1921-1923. The inspiration for the 2014 ornament came from his love of trains. The gold, red, white, and blue enameled engine is a replica of one of many steam powered locomotives that pulled the Presidential Special. The cost is $21 and we are selling them on behalf of the Civitan Group. Civitan International is an organization of volunteer service clubs around the world, dedicated to helping people in their own communities.
With the potential for inclement weather affecting LOA operation we want to make sure we have our communication systems fully set up. One aspect of our communications is via text messages. We use "TXT180". You will receive a text message from LOA via "Open Arms 77948". It will ask you to opt in to our text messaging by replying "Yes" to confirm. We will still have our other forms of communication via e-mail, website, Facebook, local radio and TV news stations and via the phone message at LOA. Please remember we usually follow the Federal Government for LOA Center closings.
For some people, Thanksgiving is a day to get a list together prior to a day of marathon Christmas shopping. Somehow our perception of Thanksgiving Day has gone askew. We've forgotten the reason for celebrating that first Thanksgiving.
In the fall of 1621, the Pilgrims had been in America less than a year. During those months, over half their original population died from disease or starvation. The Pilgrims hosted the first Thanksgiving feast not to try out their latest recipes, but to celebrate life with their Indian friends and give thanks to God for His provision in difficult circumstances. So, the reason for celebrating that first Thanksgiving - Gratitude for survival! Encourage your family toward gratitude at this time of year.
I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving with your family.