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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET ACKNOWLEDGMENTS culmination of a lifetime of work in which I learned about early childhood education—the process as well as the profession— from the bottom up and from the inside out. And for that oppor- tunity I want to thank Colleen Mendel, my boss, my friend, and my mentor for thirty years. She somehow—from the very first time she witnessed me standing on my head in my classroom full of wide-eyed and incredulous three-year-olds—saw in me some- thing I didn’t know was there and began a lifelong process of push- ing me outside my comfort zone to try things I had not considered possible. She was the first supervisor I ever had who actually meant it when she said she wanted me to learn from my mistakes. As it turned out, the learning opportunities were many. My biggest regret is that Colleen passed away before I had a chance to share this book with her and to let her know that her faith in me was well founded. And finally, Teresa Christmas, who, before she became my wife, was my coteacher in that very same classroom. Shortly after we met, with no small amount of trepidation, I showed her a story I had written, fearful that, not knowing how to let me down easy about my writing, she might decide instead just to let me down easy about everything else. She read it. She handed it back to me. “Keep writing,” she said. Since that time not a story I’ve shared with anyone—in e-mail, on Facebook, or in manuscripts to var- ious publishers, including my good friends at Redleaf—has seen the light of day without her feedback, sometimes tearfully sup- portive, sometimes adamantly critical, but always passionate and always right on target. There would be no book without her. xv COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL