20:34 PM

Turning Dreary to Dreamy

Recognizing Rainbows

Nothing can help brighten a dreary situation quite like color.

Special Education paras Crystal McGruder and Kayla Vejtasa from Staples-Motley Elementary rose to the occasion and are making rainbows from the rain.

McGruder and Vejtasa are spending weekdays during the COVID-19 ordered school closure providing child care to healthcare providers' children in the classrooms of Staples-Motley Elementary. McGruder said she and Vejtasa wanted to find activities that would be both fun and meaningful.

“We are all out of our element and needed something fun and positive to brighten our days,” McGruder said. “My friend Ryan sent me a link, ‘how to make stained glass with your kids’ on Facebook, so we made one at home on Monday morning.”

McGruder said she was so happy with the finished product, she decided it could easily be replicated in the classrooms at Staples-Motley Elementary.

“To start us off, Kayla suggested asking if we could paint the windows in Mrs. Evans' room,” McGruder said.

After the ladies got the ‘OK,’ and with the help of the children in their care, they began transforming dreary to dreamy.

Jamming out to The Beatles, the artists let their creativity fly. The paras ensured only two children painted at a time in order to adhere to social distancing.

“Between the music and commotion, we soon had many passing by with big smiles and even bigger hearts,” McGruder beamed. “We then had three more people ask us to paint their windows, so we continued into the next day; and now, we have enough window painting requests to keep us busy all week! Big smiles and lots of love all around.”

Recognizing Rainbows

In these trying times, good news is something we could all use. In the coming days and weeks, we will feature ‘Recognizing Rainbows,’ small glimmers of color and light in an otherwise dreary world.

If you have something you'd like to share (stories or photos), we encourage you to send them to us at and we'll include it in an upcoming post and/or in our newsroom.

Let's look through the darkness for the light and celebrate all of the great things still happening in our communities.