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I love the French greeting of a kiss on each cheek. Here’s how you do it: Gently grab the person you are greeting by both shoulders and go to the right cheek to cheek, do a kiss smack in the air, and then repeat it on the left side. It’s fun. I told Ray while we were in Canada that I wanted to bring home two customs, the cheek to cheek greeting and saying “Bon appetit!” when it’s time to eat. When I told a new friend in Quebec that we don’t have a custom like “Bon appetit,” she was quite surprised. Both customs are so friendly. I like the way they connect people.

We learned a great deal about the history of education in Quebec while on our trip. While we were in Trois-Rivières, we visited a school that was once a girls’ boarding school. The school has a small museum which showed what life was like for the girls who lived there.

Examples of the Girls' Beds
Examples of the Girls’ Beds
Two Styles of Uniforms
Two Styles of Uniforms
Doll and Books
Baby Doll and Books

Those of you who have read Daily Encouragement posts for a while know that I am certainly no advocate of boarding school. I love that God put mamas and daddies and children together in families. While it is possible that boarding school could be the best option for a little girl who was young enough to play with that doll, in my opinion those circumstances are rare and probably very sad. At another school we toured, the local children who lived at the boarding school were allowed to see their families once a week on Sundays, but only through a metal grill. It hurts me even to imagine it.

One idea I saw at the school was a brilliant one. When we passed these two staircases, our guide told us what happened when two girls had conflict with one another. One girl climbed the left staircase and the other climbed the right one. As they climbed, they talked to each other about what had upset them.


Two members of our tour group demonstrated what the girls were required to do when they got to the top.


Once the hug was over, nothing more could be said about the conflict. I love it! Those in authority gave both children — whether loud or quiet, bold or meek, aggressive or passive — an opportunity to say what was on their minds and the opportunity to make up and move on. Even though conflict is complicated, I still like this idea. It seems like a good way to apply God’s instructions to the church at Ephesus:

Be angry, and yet do not sin;
do not let the sun go down on your anger . . .
Ephesians 4:26

This next photo doesn’t really fit into the post, but I just wanted you to see the beautiful black squirrel we saw in the nuns’ cemetery behind the school. That was my first sighting of a black squirrel. Have any of you seen one?

Black Squirrel
Black Squirrel

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