Wednesday, April 28, 2010


Our mail carrier brought excellent news today! My son applied for the United States Naval Academy 2010 STEM program back in February. The USNA summer STEM program focuses on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics and gives students opportunities to explore these subjects further in the hopes that the students will pursue majors in these areas. It is a hands-on camp with research, work in robotics, forensics, mechanics and field trips to the Smithsonian. It is an excellent opportunity and the admissions process is very competitive. Only a handful of students from all over the United States are chosen and today we found out that our son is one of the lucky few. We are all beyond excited. The news arrived in the dreaded "Thin White Envelope." Whenever awaiting admission news - the last thing you want to see your mail carrier deliver is the Thin White Envelope aka "TWE". Everyone knows that good news comes in a nice big manila envelope. At least 9"x12" and filled to the brim with good news. It should be so large that the mail carrier has to personally deliver the envelope to your door as it would be impossible for it to fit inside the mail box. I am actually a pro at stalking the mail carrier as a few years ago I stalked her every single day for months while awaiting my older daughter's acceptance to the Naval Academy. My mail carrier was just as eager as we were for the envelope to arrive. With great anticipation we awaited the large manila envelope all the while dreading any sign of a TWE. Rejection letters neatly fit in the TWE and seldom do those envelopes bring good news. When today's mail arrived, I quickly fanned through the pile and my heart skipped a beat as soon as I saw the envelope addressed to my son from the United States Navy. I immediately brought the TWE to my son. His face clearly conveyed his knowledge of the TWE significance. I quickly said "you can apply next year" and my son said, "I thought I wrote really good essays." I watched his disappointed face turn to pure joy as he opened the TWE, pulled out the letter and read "CONGRATULATIONS..." It was a great moment for us all. This gives me renewed optimism as I await news of my younger daughter's admission status for the Coast Guard Academy's summer program. I will no longer fear the TWE and will let my mail carrier know that she is welcome to bring all mail to my home. She is well aware of my habitual stalking tendencies and will be relieved that she is no longer restricted in the size envelopes she delivers. Hmmmm I wonder what tomorrow's mail shall bring?

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