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December Updates and Reminders from the Director

December 5, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

As we wrap up the end of the year and move into the holiday season, I wanted to share with you some community outreach opportunities and other thoughts and reminders.

Community Outreach

We will be collecting items for both Food Gatherers and Mott Children’s Hospital. Both organizations are in need this time of year of supplies. Attached are lists of items they have requested. I will be delivering these items during the week of December 16th. Food Gatherers Donation List Motts Wishlist Holiday2013

Comfort Items

Many children have a special blanket, pacifier, stuffed animal, or other type of ‘lovey’ to help comfort them during the day. At Gretchen’s House we welcome these items because we know how important it is for children to feel comforted. Often these items help children self regulate their bodies when they are tired, anxious, sad, etc. If you bring these items in with your child, we will allow your child to have them as needed. Typically these items will serve their purpose in calming, comforting, soothing and then they are put aside as children move through their day. Research shows that a very low percentage of children go to college with a pacifier! So please don’t worry too much if your child is relying on comfort objects to get through parts of their early childhood experiences. As they grow and learn more coping strategies, these items will eventually fall to the wayside.

Parent Conferences

Teachers are excited to talk with you about your child’s experiences and interests at Gretchen’s House. This is a great time for you to share some of the goals you have for your child and let us know what you are seeing in your home setting. We really want to partner with you and make sure we are on the same page as we support your child through this key developmental time. Look for the sign up sheets in your child’s classroom.

Holiday Parties

Please join us in an afternoon of fun activities, sing a longs and refreshments as we celebrate the holidays as a GH community. The dates are as follows:

Pond Wing = Monday, December 16 from 4:30 – 5:45

*Farm Wing = Wednesday, December 18 from 4:30 – 5:45

Railroad Wing and *School-age = Thursday, December 19 from 4:30 – 5:45

Gretchen’s House Holiday Closing

Just a reminder that we will be closed from December 23 – January 1. We will re-open on Thursday, January 2nd. If you could please confirm with your child’s teacher if you plan to bring your child on January 2nd and 3rd, that would be extremely helpful. Since these are popular days for teachers to request the days off, we want to be sure to have enough regular staff coverage and not too many substitutes working those days. Thank you.

A message from you GH Dhu Varren PAG

The holiday season is upon us, and we would like to show our appreciation to the staff for the love, care and joy they have given to our children over the year. The Parent Advisory Group is organizing an opportunity for parents to contribute to a group gift for the teachers. With your contributions, we will purchase Target gift cards for presentation to each staff member at their holiday party.

Please note, this is voluntary and some parents may choose to recognize the teachers in another way. However, there are several staff who work “behind the scenes.” and by coordinating our efforts in this way, we can make sure all of the staff receive acknowledgement at the holidays. In addition, we know that we’re getting staff something they can really use, and it’s convenient for us. The more of us who participate, the better!

Please put your cash or check (payable to Gretchen’s House) into the marked envelopes located at the front desk.

We need to collect all contributions by Wednesday, December 18th.

If you have any questions, please email Stacey, Michelle or Christina using the addresses below. Thank you in advance for your generosity – the staff will certainly appreciate it!

Happy Holidays,

Parent Advisory Group Representatives

Stacey Noel (Farm Wing):

Christina Cort (Railroad Wing):

Michelle Precourt Debbink (Pond Wing)

About Laura Griswold
Dhu Varren Director Laura Griswold has been a part of the Gretchen’s House team for almost twenty years, starting in 1992 as an I/T teacher at GH Mt. Pleasant. Laura served as the director of GH-Mt. Vernon for six years and as the director at GH-Traver for four years before opening the Dhu Varren center in October, 2003. Laura earned a Bachelor’s degree in Family and Child Development from Eastern Michigan University. She is a certified High/Scope trainer and also serves on the Washtenaw Community College Child Care Advisory Committee. Laura has two sons in elementary school who are GH graduates. In her spare time, Laura enjoys reading, scrap booking, and spending time with her family.

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