My birthday this year wasn't phenomenal. It wasn't blow-my-socks-off crazy. It didn't involve any big exciting event or even anything really special.
But I still enjoyed it a lot.
My kids - they are so sweet - they took the time to make me cards. Most of them were making them in class while we were reviewing for a test (it's hard to tell students to stop doing something when you know they are doing it because they love you) and any time I would come close to their desks, they would quickly cover up what they were doing and pretend they were paying complete attention. It was really cute (Thank goodness the review was just a precaution - they still did well on their tests). Most of the students, along with wishing me a happy birthday, also took the opportunity on their cards to ask me to stay for another year. One student wrote, "Pleaz, pleaz, do, not travle to China. You know that you are my best teacher I have meeted befor and I can't learn wen you are not hear" (You'll have to forgive her English. She just started speaking it this year).
I even got some really great gifts! A full set of Indian clothes from a student (!), a polo shirt, a birthday cake, another birthday cake, a bouquet of yellow roses that were hand-made by a student out of silk (I was REALLY impressed by that one), a CD of how to cook Nigerian sauces, a fedora, and a birthday message and accordion song from a friend far away (great video:). It was almost overwhelming.
I think, that when it comes time for me to say goodbye to my students, that I am going to struggle.