1) nikolas – the first grandson, nephew, son of noralie and steve, niko was born 2 months premature. he’s an eye-witness example in my life of incredibleness. strong enough to make it out of the hospital after living in an incubator his first month of life instead of his mother’s arms. he’s definitely more the “little” brother i’ve always wanted, hovering eight inches above me!
2) zoe – separates herself from her boy cousins by breaking her leg and walking in a cast for a month! definitely earns “incredible” points for that! at 18 months, she could count to 10 in english, spanish, french, chinese, and tagalog. upon speaking her first words, she was able to communicate to mommy and daddy using baby signs. she can name positions of football players as well as name nfl and nba teams. plenty of potential for my intelligent niece! i can’t wait to see what else she’s learned!
3) christian – my first godson! unyielding and reserved as a child, but he and i were very close when he was a baby. he’s a wiz with football facts – plays, stats, videogames. i remember his first season of pop warner football. the coaches worked the kids pretty hard and cj had a tough time keeping up with the rest of the team during laps. not once did he stop running…he kept his legs moving until he finished his last lap. he’s now 20+ pounds lighter and is one of the best players on his team.
4) j & e – i go on and on and on about all the remarkable things that j accomplishes. the seven years i’ve been working with him, he continues to surprise me with his abilities. he’s learning how and when to use question marks, calculating the value of combinations of coins and is ahead of his entire class with his multiplication facts! his sister, e, is as bright as they come! chinese classes, piano lessons, synchronized swimming and tennis lessons keep this middle schooler quite busy! what’s even more incredible about her is her patience, kindness and unconditional love for her brother.
5) peyton – my feisty soon-to-be goddaughter occupies a lot of my thoughts. it could quite be due to the fact that i ‘ve seen less than ten pictures of her, and have spent less than ten hours with this beauty! her two nights stay in the hospital a few weeks alone makes her the most incredible infant i know! i can’t wait to see her in april!
6) a & a – another dynamic duo of siblings! i believe al is going to school now without an aide. a year ago, his mom made the best decision in her life by eliminating his home program hours. since then, she’s been able to spend a lot more time with him as a mother and not a therapist. aside from his academics, his sense of humor is what i find most extraordinary. his sister, ab, is another great sibling. she’s creative, funny, intelligent, and kindhearted.
7) jacob – i forget what his reading level is because it continues to improve each time i see him – he’s probably surpassed me in the harry potter series! a chess master, a walking almanac of sports facts, a photographic memory of 10+ dinosaurs and individual facts for each of them, jakes brainpower is substantial. his sense of humor, guitar hero skills and signing voice are not too shabby either!
8) y – this boy is so bright that he’s smart enough not to display it to everyone in fear of the expectations being raised! every now and then, he lets it slip…words that he can read, instructions that he can follow, pictures he can draw. this boy went from disliking any form of instructional control to walking up to teachers to hug or smile at them. his art work is phenomenal! i wish i could get into his brain for ten seconds to see his perception of objects and space.
9) dennis jr. – i can’t believe how much this boy has been through – stitches, a lazy eye, allergic reactions, speech sessions, seizures, and fungus! enough to keep any mom or dad on their toes! and despite all his struggles, he remains a happy boy full of wonder and surprise. i love dj’s eyes – they are constantly smiling.
10) campfire usa created this day as a day to show kids they are loved and cared for. this day is also a campaign which encourages adults to write letters of love and support to the children in their lives. i am so blessed to be surrounded with incredible kids every day of my life!