And now for September…

So far it’s been a pretty decent month for us. We went on a beach trip the weekend after Labor Day to meet up with some friends Jack knew when he was at Auburn. I’m not really a beach person, but we had a good time. The kids really loved it. This was Bella’s and Eowyn’s first trip to the beach. Dylan has been before, but it has been a while. 

That just about sums up where we are right now in our lives. Nothing major to report in the Donovan Family. 

I do have a prayer request though. My mom has worked for the Alabama Department of Youth Services for a very long time now – probably around 13 years. She’s been a teacher all of her life. She enjoys her job and she makes a difference in the lives of the boys that come into the program. About a month ago, she heard that some “higher ups” with the state were going to be coming down to her campus for a meeting on the Monday of whatever week was next. She was pretty sure it was not going to be good news. The role had gotten down to just 3 kids and she felt like it was probably going to be about whether they would shut down her campus or not. For those of you who are unaware – the Department of Youth Services (DYS) has different campuses in the state of Alabama where kids (usually ages 13-18, but they’ve had younger) are sent by the judicial system when they’ve gotten into too much trouble, but haven’t started committing really violent crimes. The main campus is in Mount Meigs, Alabama. I think there are 4 others. Or, there WERE four others anyway. They have one or two for girls, but the rest are for boys. There are no co-ed environments. There are men and women who work at the facilities, but the students are either all male or all female – no intermingling. Anyway, they came down and sure enough, told them that they were closing the Thomasville campus effective immediately. The 3 students who were there, were shipped off to another campus. They didn’t fire anyone, but they did make it hard to keep the job. Basically, they said that they could find a position for each of the workers an one of the other campuses. The only problem is that all the other campuses are really far away from Thomasville. I think that the closest one is the main campus in Mount Meigs. My mom still has a job, but she’ll have to work in Mount Meigs to keep it. There are a lot of things that complicate this even more. My mom has already asked for prayer about all this, but there are too many people who don’t fully understand the different things in this situation. For one, she makes a decent salary working with the state. Unlike a regular public school scenario, they actually value the experience that she has and she is paid for her degrees, expertise, and different experiences. She has 24 full years of teaching behind her and more than just a Bachelor’s Degree. I know that she was the Alabama DYS Teacher of the Year at least one time (and probably deserved it more than once). I’m not just talking biased here people. She only taught me once when I was in 6th grade. The woman knows what she’s doing when it comes to teaching. She goes to conference after conference to make sure she is current on materials and methods. I am serious when I say she knows what she’s doing. This is partly why it’s a complicated situation. Then there’s the grandmother thing. Both of my grandmothers are unable to live alone anymore. My Memaw is 93 years old and my Granny is almost 87. My Dad pretty much stays with his mom (Memaw) during the week. My mom keeps Granny at her house during the week and a lady comes and stays with her during the day. On the weekends, they all converge back at my parents’ house so they can at least be a family for 2 days. My mom is planning to take the DYS up on the offer and work at the Mount Meigs campus because it’s the only option for her at this time. She doesn’t have to report to campus until November 1 though. It’s just much more complicated than some people realize and it irks me a little when I see or hear people say that they’ll pray for something that would allow her to stay in Thomasville. It’s like they are over-simplifying something that has too many complexities to allow for that. There isn’t a simple solution to it because every solution has more cons than pros. It just rubs me the wrong way. In the immediate future though, prayers for peace and wisdom to navigate this path are most appreciated.

I didn’t mean for this post to get so long, but you know what they say about the best laid plans…. Oh well. That should catch us up to being all current with the happenings in the family. 

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