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Student of the Month


Federico was truly honored at this week's breakfast put on by the Optimist's Club at Rancho Mirage Country Club. He received 6 beautiful embossed certificates of achievement from the state senator, California Congress, Palm Desert High School, Palm Desert City Council and the Optimist Club. He also got a beautiful watch and pen!




After introducing Brad and I, Federico was asked to spontaneously give a speech about his experience as an exchange student, and his impressions of school in America, and his high school in particular. He was very poised and eloquent.


After breakfast, we were handed the microphone to speak about being Federico's parents. I talked about working my whole career with teens as a teacher, vice-principal and therapist, but waiting until 60 to experience the joy of being a mom. I explained the process of how we chose Federico, and how all of our hopes and expectations had been surpassed. I talked about his achievements, but also about his character and values, and why we love him as if we gave birth to him. Everyone in the room was teary, and then Brad took the microphone. He was VERY emotional, and soon everyone was crying. He made a couple of jokes, regained his composure, and talked about how proud we are of Federico. It was a wonderful morning for all of us!

Here is Federico with his principal, Robert Hicks. He was teased about the brilliance of recruiting a soccer player all the way from Italy.


We are so proud of our son!


Comments (11)

Palma, I am teary now too! Your joy, pride and love come shining through. Congratulations to all 3 of you!


An event to treasure - what wonderful memories you are building up with this very special young man.

Barb Cabot:

Oh YOU! You made me cry again! I am thinking how can he ever go back to Italy, save for his family, this is his home. What a year you've given him and it hasn't even been all that long since he's arrived. Wonderful that those certificates of merit will go back to Italy as part of this memorable year. I wish I could have been in the room to hear and cheer and cry with everyone else. Again congrats to all and sending a big hug to you three!


What a beautiful entry. Teary in philadelphia too. Way to go Federico!


Way to go Federico, Palma and Brad! I'm so happy for you all!

Kathy Landini:

Love that you are creating the most wonderful memories for Federico, as well as for yourself and Brad. Love that this has obviously become a beautiful experience for all of you. You and Brad are amazing parents! Was there any question that you would create such a wonderful family? Can't wait to see what the rest of this year holds for all of you.


He has been a blessing for you and you for him!
I know that he will give you much comfort thru life 's trials. Can't wait to meet him in January.


So happy for each of you! Federico will never be "out of touch". I know of a Chinese exchange student that has come back to the states for a second year with her American family.

Denise Curtis:

Congratulations to a beautiful family! That is quite an accomplishment for anyone, let alone a non-native English language person! I'm sure all of his parents are very proud of him.



This lovely post made me think about Federico's parents in Italy. They must miss Federico terribly and must be so comforted knowing that you and Brad are taking such amazingly good care of him.


I know what an honor it is to get Student of the Monthe, and I am very happy for you all!

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