I love, love, LOVE it that they come by!

Oct 15, 2022 | 3 comments

Carson Kemmer – on a field trip c. 1988

My “kids!”  Former, I should say.  School kids!  Only now many of them are older than I was when I was their teacher!  Hard to believe.

Today it was Carson Kemmer knocking at my door.  “No, I won’t sit down.  Just came by to say ‘hello!’ I’ll only stay a minute.”  In 1988-89 Carson was a first-grader in my class.  Or maybe a 2nd or third-grader.  Whatever the years, he was my student for all three grades.  He’s kept in touch, on and off, all these years — used to talk to Nyel about his blacksmithing projects with Larry Holland; invited us to his wedding (the practice one.)

I can’t tell you how many topics we covered today.  How the Peninsula has changed since he was a kid.   And how Oysterville “looks just about the same.”    And he had a photo of Nyel and me taken at Oysterville’s Sesquicentennial in 2004 that he thought I’d like to have.

Sydney and Nyel at the Oysterville Sesquicentennial, 2004

I don’t know how long we talked… maybe an hour.  I finally had to open the door and say, “Next time I’m going to make you come in and sit!  My old legs can’t stand for all this time.”  “I wouldn’t mind,” he said and we both laughed.  Turns out it was the first day of deer season and he was taking a break. I didn’t really get that… once upon a time Nyel would have translated.  Later.

The other day it was Ryan who was here — the electrician who responded from Ford Electric when I had a problem.  Ryan was a first grader in my class the only year I ever taught at Hilltop, 1980-81, I think.  Danny Newell, Eric Akines, Ken Wiegardt were in that class.  Why can’t I remember Ryan’s last name?

If kids knew how much it meant for us old ducks to see how wonderfully they’ve turned out… if they knew how important it was to us to know that we made a difference… if they knew what delight we take in learning about their jobs and their families and their concerns for the future…  Thank you to all of you who come by now and then to say “hello!”  You are all great!



  1. Deborah L Wells

    Great story about your kids at school and loved it!

  2. Jenny Valencourt

    I know personal, familial, and friend experiences how deeply the connection we have or (had as kids) with our teachers. Educators had such an impact on my life, I remember their names, Mrs. George, Ms. Bidwell…I could go on.

  3. Michele Frace

    I love today’s blog, Sydney! Carson was my student in kindergarten. I have a Carson story or two I’ll share with you. And him if I have the opportunity! I also love it when my former students contact me via Facebook by running into them downtown or at events we both find ourselves. I love love love it also! Thanks for bringing a smile to my face.


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