Spring Snow

March 18 - 8:44PM

Dear Parents,

Just a warning - we are hearing about a possible accumulation of snow on the first full day of spring! Please keep watch on your email and text messages (if you are on our Remind site) on Monday morning for possible notifications of a delay or closing.

This is the first year in my entire career that we haven't had even one snow day - I'm wondering if Mother Nature is saving the best for last!

If so, enjoy the short-lived snow, for spring is surely here. This is just a little hiccup!

Best to all, Miss Deb

Teen Arts

March 18 - 8:43PM

Dear Parents,

Miss Corrie, one of our Art teachers here at FOG, worked with the teens in our school to have them submit art pieces in Sussex County's Annual Teen Arts Festival at Sussex County College recently. Here is a short write up from Miss Corrie and an article attached from the newspaper:

On Tuesday March 15th I had the honor of attending the 2016 Teen Arts festival with two of Fields of Green's middle school students Connor and Angela. Both students submitted pencil drawings and both were selected to be on display in the SCCC Gallery from 3/22 - 4/12! Congratulations to Angela and Connor for all their hard! The exhibit is open to the public so go take a look!

The festival was held at Sussex county community college in Newton where 22 schools throughout Sussex county participated. It was a day designed to bring students and teachers together and share their creativity in visual arts, music, photography, drama and more. Our students, their mothers' and myself attempted to learn to juggle, Connor took an hour Anime course, and Angela took an iPhone photography class. The Teen Arts festival had its start in 1969 and I attended as a student in 1994! I am so glad I had the opportunity to share this experience with Connor and Angela and their mothers. We all had a great day!"

Also, don't forget to visit our page on Facebook to view all of the photos we take and publish there for all to see and share!

Have a great afternoon!

-Miss Deb

Sappy Discussion

March 8 - 3:53PM

Dear Parents,

As I am still tearing up after writing that last email, I would like to say thanks to all of you who are offering to boil up sap for us! We will be leaving gallon jugs by the front gate whenever we get them and you are welcome to take home as many gallons as you wish. Once again, if you are unfamiliar with the process, please ask and I will tell you how to do it correctly so you don't end up with maple sugar instead of syrup!

Also, we still need gallon water jugs as we have run out and are now filling up water coolers and our 5 gallon water jugs! I am guessing that this week will be the end of our short run, since the weather is going to stay warm and the sap will probably turn cloudy, signalling the end of sap season.

Please return any jugs you have used also, so that we can reuse them again next year.

Thanks again!!! -Miss Deb

The Circle of Life and other things

March 8 - 3:52PM

Good afternoon all!

Before I forget, make sure you all visit our Facebook page and Like it so you can all see the photos we take regularly and post on there. We will have some new ones up shortly with one important topic: The Changing of the Goats...

On Saturday I arranged the transport of our new goat, Vanilla, to come from Deposit, New York to Vernon. I just want to first say a HUGE and humble thank you to the Buntings from Honesdale, Pennsylvania for transporting Vanilla on her long ride here. The Buntings have a rescue barn called "Billy's New Hope Barn" in Honesdale. It turns out that Mrs. Bunting drives the bus that my granddaughter, Taylor, rides and we recently started having Taylor begin volunteer work at her barn, caring for their many rescued pigs, cows, etc. Since they have a horse trailer, Taylor asked them if they would help transport the new goat to our school. I offered to pay them whatever fee they charged. The journey began on Saturday morning at 8 am, where they left Honesdale (Mr. and Mrs. Bunting, Taylor, and Taylor's friend Morgan), drove to Deposit to pick up the goat and drove to Vernon with Taylor (and her GPS) guiding them here. I met them here at 1 PM and we unloaded the goat. When I asked them how much they want for the transport, they told me that since Taylor is such a huge help to them and a wonderful and good girl, they were donating their time and travel fees to us. I felt so honored and so proud of my granddaughter! (I also want to thank Dale Haysom from FOG for offering to help transport even though we couldn't get the timing right.)

When we introduced (or re-introduced) Vanilla to Cocoa, they touched noses and began their little goat play, seeming to remember each other - it was so sweet to see them reunite. I am so glad to adopt Vanilla, Cocoa's mom, and have family back together again. One day I will write about my awesome experiences with animals, both wild and domestic, and how families in animals really do matter.

Morris, who was still with us at the time, seemed to be curious about Vanilla, but Cocoa put himself between the two as if to protect one from the other for some reason, or exercise his dominance - not sure which. Anyway, it was an easy transition, and Vanilla is a sweet and mellow goat - a perfect addition to our barnyard.

Now to yesterday - Monday...Morris seemed to collapse sometime in the night and Miss Melissa met with that scene when she came as usual to feed early in the morning. When I got here, she had moved Morris to the center of the barn on her side and we both said our goodbyes and told her it was okay to move on. I went back up to speak to my Elementary students and they all wanted to say their goodbyes, but by the time we got back to the barn, Morris had passed. The kids still bravely wanted to say their goodbyes and did so. It was a special moment for us all.

The heartbreaking moment came when Miss Melissa and I went to take Morris away at lunchtime. When we put her in the wheelbarrow to move her out, while we were moving away from the barnyard, Cocoa began screaming for his lost friend. He gave off the loudest, most guttural call and wouldn't cease, even as we were out of sight. It was a sound I won't forget, and it truly shows that even goats can mourn the loss of those they love. The upper elementary kids went back and calmed him down and after a while he was comforted.

I am so glad that Vanilla came when she did, or Cocoa would have been very, very lonely until we acquired another goat. The timing, although sad, was perfect, and the circle of life once again went around in our fields of green....

Yours in the spirit of love and loss... Miss Deb

Question and Thanks

March 3 - 9:29AM

Dear Elementary Parents,

As most of you know, I read to the entire class every day in the afternoon. We just finished reading "A Wrinkle in Time" by Madeline L'Engle and will be watching the movie tomorrow. The kids loved it so much that I will be reading the next book in the series as well. But in between I thought I would read the book, "Tuck Everlasting," which is a wonderful story that has now been brought onto Broadway as a play.

I was thinking of a trip into the city recently to visit a supposedly great interactive Math Museum and was considering also taking the kids to see Tuck Everlasting - it begins at the end of March. The only issue is that Tuck Everlasting only plays in a matinee on the weekends. I am game to going in on a weekend, but I wanted to see if any of you are willing to do so. We could get group rates for both things and it would be a long but wonderful day together.

I would like to hear from all of you about this so I can gauge if we are all able to go. I'm sure the day won't be cheap, so that is also a consideration for us all. Let me know what you think about this - I was thinking sometime in April - the 9th, 16th, 23rd or 30th. It would be great for the kids to see a Broadway show before they perform their play so they can get a glimpse into the value of high level performing, and the Math Museum looks really great.

Also, I want to thank you all for something I rarely think to do - sending your children with healthy, whole food lunches. Most of you send wonderful, healthy, whole food lunches with minimal to no sugar, rarely any processed foods, whole grains, and for that I want to commend you all. I love to see the kids happily munching on their red peppers, carrots, apples, Halo oranges (they ALL compare to see who brings a Halo each day), and drinking their water or low to no sugar drinks. Keep up the good work. With their organic snacks and healthy lunches, the kids are able to function much better during the day than kids who come in with processed, sugary foods.


Debra Smorto