As a warm-up to writing a persuasive essay, Hansie’s English teacher asked the class, “Tell me how you talk your parents into buying something you want?”
All kinds of answers flew around the classroom, but I think Hansie surprised his teacher more than anyone answering, “I never try to talk them into buying anything. And when I do ask for something, it’s so rare, they usually just get it for me.”
“Well,” his teacher pursued, “has there ever been a time when you wanted something and your parents said ‘no.’?”
“Probably,” Hans answered, “but they usually have good reasons for the things they won’t buy. So I don’t bug them about it. When I asked for a Frisbee this summer my mom bought me two.”
I’m not sure buying two Frisbees was so smart, because I had no ideas for birthday presents yesterday.
Hans honestly, wants nothing, envies no one and hesitates to even ask for new shoes when his are riddled with holes or a second pair of jeans when he has trouble keeping his one pair washed for every day.
With endless curiosity and dozens of interests, as Hans says, “I don’t like things, I like doing things.” He plays both French Horn and piano– not because I insist, but because he loves them both. Practicing for and playing in the orchestra pit for our high school’s West Side Story has filled his afternoons for the past month and Hans’ enthusiasm for the music and story meant everyone in our family had the music memorized by opening night.
Hans says he feels bad for the girls who sit in front of him in AP European History and AP Art History because he constantly enthuses–“I’ve read a book about that!” or “I’ve seen that painting in person!” As he sits at the kitchen counter doing homework he often retells interesting facts from biology and math to his younger siblings. When he finds free time, he pulls up ted.com or khanacademy.org and, as you might guess by now, enthusiastically draws everyone into his orbit.
Compact and muscular, Hans loves wrestling, loves track and LOVES Ultimate Frisbee. Everywhere he needs to go, he rides his bike. And well, he loves riding his bike too.
If Hans just read a book, you’d better believe he’ll talk you into reading it next. His interests are wide: fantasy fiction to science, Pride and Prejudice to The Way of Kings.
More than any other quality, Hans is kind. With a joke and a smile for everyone, he’s just as sweet to toddlers and his grandma as to the cute girl down the street.
With his birthday on a Sunday, Hans received what he wanted most– ordination as a Priest. He can now bless the sacrament and visit the homebound to administer the sacrament. Oh yes, he can date and drive now too. 😉 Hans pointed out how fitting it is to become a Priest at the same time a boy begins dating– his hands and heart need to be clean and pure to break and bless the bread and water and girls need to be treated with the same reverence. I love this boy.
And today, the braces came off. Just when I thought Hans couldn’t get any cuter, he does. Happy birthday Hans! We love and adore you.