PEORIA, Ariz. (KSAZ) - It was a special welcome back to school for students at Sunrise Mountain High School.
When they walked through the doors last Wednesday, they were met with a heartwarming surprise that made the end of summer vacation a little easier.
On a bright, 2-inch sticky note, written in plain black ink are the kind of words that we need, but don't hear nearly often enough.
"Some of them were just simple words, like smile and be confident or be brave," said Alyssa Delavara.
On their last first day of school, Mack, Alyssa and Abbie strolled in at 6:00 a.m.
"Which is super early for senior year," said Mack. "We had to set those alarm clocks."
They joined a dozen of their friends, walking all over the Sunrise Mountain campus, placing their 3,000 inspirational Post-Its everywhere they could.
"We were at church camp over the summer and we really want to make a difference at our school. So, we were like, what's a great way to make everyone have a great first day and have everyone smile," said Alyssa.
It was weeks of planning, all coming down to a few nights before. They wrote each message by hand, trying to avoid any duplicates.
"One of my favorite ones, it said be a Fruit Loop in a bowl of Cheerios," said Mack.
And then they sat back and watched as their classmates made the discovery. The people behind the deed were a mystery at first, but more than 200 Facebook shares later, their identities and motives were revealed.
"People should continue to stay positive and know there's people out there who love you and no matter what you're going through, there's always something you can find in the brighter side of things," said Abbie.
And you can't get much brighter than highlighter-colored encouragement. A small symbol that little gestures can make a big impact.
"I think it's really important to make people know that it's not just all bad. Humanity is really good," said Mack.