"HAPPY BIRTHDAY XHOI!!!"
I am going to make a bold statement now: Xhoi has the coolest name of any student I have ever taught. EVER! C'mon! X-H-O-I. Pronounced "Joy". It's too good! I am embarrassed to admit how many times I have talked about Xhoi's name to family and friends. I mean, my own sister's name is Jocelyn, which shortens to Joy. But Joy is no XHOI! So, well done Parents of Xhoi; you have bestowed upon your daughter the world's coolest name...
One of the great things about Xhoi is her balance between taking her academics very seriously / working very hard... BUT, at the same time, not getting overly flustered or upset when things are difficult. She just keeps plugging away and plugging away until she masters the material. Great perseverance! Xhoi has the enviable ability to not make it mean anything when she is struggling ("I can't do this", "I'm stupid", etc) but rather to stay focused on what needs to be done to be successful. This is a lesson we can all (myself included) learn from Xhoi.
Have you ever seen Xhoi with her younger brother, David? It's quite heart-warming. She looks out for him but in no way talks down to him or treats him like a nuisance. They are a great pair. During the recent (unfortunate) bomb scare, Xhoi came to me in the tennis court and - though very calm - expressed immediate concern for David's well-being. It was very, very sweet. What a wonderful big sister!
(And by the way: Xhoi may have the world's greatest name but David has the world's greatest voice. Look into a career in radio, Dude!)
Here's the ultimate compliment I paid Xhoi in our time together: she is one of only three people who I allowed to sit as a group of three in my class!!! WOW!! It's one of my biggest NO WAY's but when you are as awesome as Xhoi I MIGHT make an exception (of course, there are two other awesome people who make up the trio. I don't suppose I need to name them do I?).
I assume that I will never teach another "Xhoi" in my teaching career. And that's great news! Because how could any one else be expected to measure up to such a personable, thoughtful, determined, special girl? Just like you're name, Xhoi, you are simply fantastic!!