So far this year, between Mrs. D. and myself, we’ve only been out a total of three days (for various reasons). As luck would have it, we were able to secure the same substitute all three times. She is, I’ll call her Mrs. Hashbrown, well known in our school for her subbing prowess. I was lucky enough to work with her one of those days and she is, quite simply, a peach.

Well yesterday, Mrs. Hashbrown was in for another kindergarten teacher. I knew this and had seen her a few times in the hallway and at lunch. My sprouts did not know this and at the end of the day, when we were outside playing and enjoying the unusually warm sunshine for mid-November, Mrs. Hashbrown emerged from the school like a butterfly from it’s cocoon.

You would think either Lady Gaga, the Pope, or the Dalai Lama (take your pick) had arrived. As word of Mrs. Hashbrown’s attendance spread over the playground, she was, quite literally, swarmed by kindergartners. She was at one point almost totally enveloped in hugs… not that she was complaining.

When one of my friends ran up to me to report, “Mrs. Hashbrown, Mrs. Hashbrown is… HERE!” what else could I do? I ran up to her and embraced her too. There’s not much more I love than a fantastic substitute teacher and a good bear hug.