Our Sunny Sunshine

There is a rather significant gap in our sons’ ages.   Currently – Will is 9 and Jack is 18.

When we first learned there would be 2 McFarland offspring in our household – I wondered (and I worried) about this big ole’ gap between the McFarland sons’ ages. I wondered how this would play out in their lives.   How would it work? Would it be awkward or harder for them?

I wondered if our sons would have anything in common. If they would have anything in their lives to bond them together . . .

Thankfully and blessedly – they do have plenty in common. Snakes and toads and Legos and gaming and drawing and playing old-fashioned card and board games too. And they have just enough different interests to keep them teaching one another new and wonderful things!

It turned out to be yet another case of me worrying and brooding about absolutely – positively nothing. (Jason was correct – AGAIN! Sigh . . .)

But nine years is still a pretty big gap between our sons.

I remember thinking (all those years ago now) – wow – when Jack graduates from high school – William will just be finishing up the third grade . . . Jason and I will have a son in college and a son in elementary school! Hmmmm . . .

And that is exactly what our Will did this week. Will McFarland finished up his 3rd grade year. And he rocked it like a rock star!

There was an “End of the School Year Awards Ceremony” on the very last day of the 2021 – 2022 school year and I was thrilled to be able to attend.

(I was so seriously thrilled having 2 surgeries less than two weeks ago didn’t keep this mom from missing Will’s big day! It was also my practice run for Jack’s graduation . . .)

Will’s elementary school principal is my hero. Mrs. Williams runs her school assemblies with such grace and an efficiency I admire. She and her staff and the teachers kept everything moving with an inspiring precision.   In came the students. There were succinct instructions. (The children listened and followed these instructions. Their parents most certainly did NOT! Seriously – thank you – Thank You – THANK YOU – kind – polite – respectful – courteous – gloriously wonderful Lutherans of Saint Stephen for being so well-mannered in worship.) The awards were given. The classes were dismissed. The parents were dismissed. And it ALL was over in just 25 minutes.

(It would have been wonderful if Mrs. Williams were in charge of the duPont Manual high school graduation . . . oops that was uncalled for!)

Will received Lion’s Pride Awards for academic success and behavior.   But the award he received that really and truly sums up our youngest son was the “Sunshine Award.” The Sunshine Award is for bringing sunshine and joy into the classroom on a regular basis.

Terrible picture – but Will was a blur! He was moving fast. I don’t think he even paused a nano-second!

This is our little guy. William McFarland is bright and sunny and a bringer of joy. Will’s favorite color is orange and in many ways I think this color also captures a bit of his personality. Our Will is generally bright and happy and soooo extroverted (or maybe it is just that both of his parents and his brother are sooooooooooooo introverted!)

Whenever we set off into the world Will always – Always – ALWAYS declares – “Have fun!” And he means it. Off for a walk – he hopes you “have fun.” Off to work – he hopes you “have fun.” Setting off for a doctor’s appointment or a trip to the dentist – he wishes you a silver lining of joy and fun there too. He is delightfully – gloriously optimistic and sunny and just plain bouncy and buoyant. Will McFarland generally has fun wherever he is and makes friends wherever he goes.

We pray this lasts. That the big – cruel – mean – heartless world doesn’t break our sunny boy and turn him into a dark and brooding cynical cynic (like the rest of his family).   Because Will is our light bearer and our joy bringer and our little sunshine all dressed in orange!

And our Will is officially a 4th grader!

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