Written by Traci Runge

Inevitably, this week comes every year :-/

Off to school they went; first Liam and Payton headed to Kearney Catholic on Tuesday, then Caden went to his first day of middle school on Wednesday and then Thursday Jackson went off to third grade. Darby Jr was supposed to start first grade too, but he had been sick the night before and waited until Friday.

As I walked into their elementary school on Thursday like I had done every August for the past 15 years…I looked around at the familiar surroundings that almost seem like home. The faculty at Central has become like family to us. Our children haven’t ever been afraid to stay on their first day of Kindergarten, they have known their teachers since they were born. They feel safe & comfortable and I love that!

I took a picture of Jackson with his new teacher before school began Thursday. She has taught 3 of his 4 older siblings over the past 15 years. It is so fun to look back on all the memories we have shared with her. I couldn’t be happier as I look forward to the exciting times he will have ahead of him this year. Mrs. Sonnenfeld is an incredible teacher!

When I returned home later that day I reflected on some of the special moments we had shared with Jackson’s teacher. How blessed we are here in Kearney, we truly have an amazing school system full of teachers and other staff who absolutely LOVE teaching and caring for our young! We have been through so much together and we are grateful to have this group of people in our lives.

I am sure many of you have had experiences in your life that have had a significant impact on you or your family. Well, we are no different. Our children have been educated, nurtured and loved by the school faculty they have been so blessed to know here.

What I would like to say today is, “THANK YOU!” Thank you for giving the hugs when they need them, the discipline when they deserve it, the praise when they earn it and for sharing a little bit of yourself each and everyday with the little people that will someday have a BIG impact on our world!

A good teacher is like a candle – it consumes itself to light the way for others.

~Mustafa Kemal Atatürk

Teachers are remarkable people that have the toughest job on the planet and I want you to each take the time to show your gratitude to these angels on earth. Tell them what difference they have made in your life and encourage your children to honor and respect the life lessons they have been taught.


Traci Runge

Traci was born and raised in San Diego and has called Kearney, Nebraska home for the past 18 years. She is married to Darby Runge and together they have 6 children. They own and operate Pro-Tint, a window tinting business. Along with being a full-time mom, Traci is also a Manager and Certified Trainer with SendOutCards, she works with businesses and individuals to build relationships and grow their income through Relationship Marketing. Traci works hard to balance her roles of mother, wife and business owner. She strives to help make the world a better place through kindness and love and leading by example. Traci is committed to her family, church and community and can often be found volunteering in some capacity. www.sendoutcards.com/tracirunge