Sunday, August 30, 2015

Friday, August 28, 2015

"I wish we didn't have weekends."

So. School. Both kids are happy with it.

Skipper got the English teacher she wanted (the one with lots of Hello Kitty paraphernelia), and her Japanese teacher plays piano and sings a lot of songs. She feels very comfortable at her school now, with two years under her belt already, and she seems to feel socially solid - she has many friends who want to play with her, including the Blond Twins, who are in second grade and have recess with her, and that makes her feel very popular. Pitstock is in her class again this year, and she and he played "Dancing Ninjas" together at recess. And she likes schoolwork, because it's hard enough to engage her but not hard enough to threaten her sense of herself. She's excited to have homework. Her Japanese teacher speaks no English to the kids at all, giving Skipper a sense that she's going in the deep end for the first time, which she says she dislikes but actually seems kind of thrilled by. I'm sure she'll change her mind, but at the moment she LOVES school.

Duchess also loves school. She has the same beloved teacher as last year, almost all the same kids in her class plus a few good additions, and a smaller class size. She's a fifth-grader at a K-5 school, and therefore at the top of the pecking order, and she is also The Tallest Kid In School. (She probably was last year, too, but now it's official.) She is sitting next to and sharing a locker with a smart, weird, idiosyncratic, doesn't-care-what-anybody-thinks-of-her girl who has been in her grade all along but never been in her class until this year, and I think that could be good for Duchess. Duchess feels that she has a lot more confidence this year. She actually told me a few weeks ago that she feels like she's changed a lot this summer, and is now a different person. I asked her how she's different, and she thought for a moment and said "I'm happier now." She most loved the experiences this summer that involved small groups of kids forced to bond, especially at her backpacking camp. This kid is really starving for a club.

We're lining up the usual cavalcade of extracurriculars - Duchess has twice-a-week after-school Chinese, twice-a-week kung fu, once-a-week gymnastics, and once-a-month all-day wilderness nerd adventures. Skipper has once-a-week gymnastics, once-a-week piano, once-a-week taiko, and every-day after-school kung fu. They both wish to add more things.

That's about it. It's fall! The rain is supposed to start today!

Tuesday, August 11, 2015


My uncle sent over some photos from our river trip at the beginning of the summer, featuring us and various fabulous relatives (including the original BBE, a year and a half younger than Skipper but more reward-motivated and far more adventurous, making her an excellent partner in crime). Please note the amazing rowing job I am doing in the last photo, under very difficult river conditions.

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Probably too much Netflix.

I just spent 20 minutes reading the results of a Google search on"Why didn't Joey and Rachel end up together?"

But really, WHY?!