Dear Flint Hill School Families,

Last Saturday, we experienced a wonderful moment in time at the Holiday Shoppes.  I hope each of you had the opportunity to stop by, even for a few minutes, to see this event in action. The Co-Chairs this year, Karen Eye and Lauryn Pomeroy, did an amazing job bringing it all together with the help of countless volunteers who all shared their leadership, hard work and dedication to this exciting event. Many thanks also to Daphne Rappaport who helped guide what looked like the largest bake sale we have ever had, and to Ginny Shevlin who took responsibility for the decorations.  Our Director of Parent Relations, Tiffany Parry, the entire Development team, and the wonderful team of parent volunteers who made it possible, all deserve our thanks!  We are Huskies “pulling the sled” together and Saturday really demonstrated that. Members of our entire school family – from parents and past parents to students, alumni and neighbors – were able to experience the warm, genuine tone of this special event.

Part of the beauty of this annual event is that it helps lead us into this very special time of the year. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and with the cold winds beginning to move in, it sets the perfect mood for all of us. This time of the year always reinforces how important our families and our friends are to us. Many of you may be traveling in the next week to be with those loved ones and that can produce great moments of joy and excitement – and also some real tension. I have wonderful memories of very precious moments with our family, but I also remember the challenges we experienced during long car trips, with our three boys in the back of the car, the different ways they could find to annoy each other, and how that tension would always spread right to the front seat. And yet, I now look back on those times and smile, cherishing the fact that we spent got to spend time with them. I also hold dear to my heart the times when we took advantage of Thanksgiving to just be together with relatives and other friends who are important to us. The world is often running at far too fast a pace to really stop and enjoy things together. Thanksgiving gives us that set time in the calendar to do just that – and we need to take advantage of that gift.

So whether you are taking a car trip, a flight or staying close to home, please take time to enjoy this moment just as we enjoyed last Saturday. And know that these special moments require more than just our physical presence. They need our clear, uninterrupted focus, our individual attention, and our willingness to step away from all of the work and pressures that we face in other aspects of our lives. Please put away your phones and computers if they tend to serve as constant reminders of what needs to be done next.  Give your undivided attention to the folks you are fortunate enough to be with right at this moment.

At Admission Open Houses, I often talk about our role as parents and reference the fact that Emily and I developed a simple philosophy of two key guiding principles.  Obviously, one was to give our children an education and to make sure they would be prepared for wherever their passions would lead them. But the most important one was to give our children unconditional love. That love is always there, and is the foundation for the beautiful relationships that evolve as your children grow up.

While we won’t be able to be with our boys and their families until Christmas, we will join many of you on the highway late next week, as we run down to South Carolina to spend time with my father and my brother.  I look forward to hearing memories of Thanksgivings past, sharing tales of our children’s adventures and spending time together. I hope you too have a very special Thanksgiving and that all of us will return well fed, well rested and ready to fully engage in the holiday season and exciting winter ahead.

Best wishes to you!


John M. Thomas