Saturday, September 28, 2013

Back to school

The kids have been in school now for almost a month. A is in 2nd grade and D is a big kindergartner. A, as expected, has had a very smooth transition. School combines the two things he loves best - lots of kids his age and predictable rules to follow. If A could be in school seven days a week, I think he would be. He is doing great both academically and socially. He's really strong in math - he has great number sense - and he loves helping the teacher and other kids. His reading is on grade level, and he just got selected for the student council. The one small concern I have is that his speech often isn't clear. Mostly people can understand him, but he tends to shorten glides (certain long vowel sounds) and drop final consonants. I can see how that might affect his spelling down the road, but for now, it doesn't get in the way, and he can make those sounds, he just often doesn't.

D has had a harder time. He was in daycare every morning this summer, but it's still a big transition to full days of learning and socializing. He loves school, and wakes up super excited to go each morning, but he's exhausted by the end of the day. He's usually very grumpy in the evenings. I was proud of him the first week, when he was able to articulate through tears, "I don't like this new routine." He's usually not that self-aware - more often exhaustion is expressed as a nonsense word being yelled over and over. But he does love school. He doesn't want to leave when I come to pick him up at 3:15. I actually had to bribe him with McDonald's to smooth our going-home routine. (I've been a vegetarian for more than twenty years, but D wanted McDonald's, so I tossed my principles to the wind and bought him a hamburger. Or, as he called it when it was time to order, "mouse meat.") Academically D is doing great and has already hit most of the end-of-year benchmarks. He's starting to read, and he loves to work on the Reading A-Z books I used with A a year ago. It has always calmed him when I read to him, and I'm thrilled to notice that he is now calming himself by reading.

The boys also started soccer this month. A had played every day in July at his YMCA camp, so we already knew he would love it. For D it's his first attempt at a team sport, and it's great to see that he is ready for the experience. It's pretty cute when the boys already have their shin guards on at 6AM for a 10AM game.

I'm continuing to work a couple of hours a day, teaching adult ESL. The last session (during the summer) was rough, but the current group has been great. They are mostly quite young, mostly pretty motivated, and often funny.

Fall is not my favorite season - the days get too short too quickly - but this one is off to a good start.

Monday, September 9, 2013

I haven't been writing

I haven't been writing this summer. Partly it's because our summer was very busy. A did a great job describing it here. The one thing I would add is that this was the summer our boys started playing with each other. They rarely did that before, but now they're always giggling and wrestling and cracking each other up. I love it. I also partly haven't been writing because I wrote a post about the George Zimmerman verdict, and when I didn't publish it, it became a mental block against other posts. But mostly it's because lately I've been feeling less and less like an adoptive family, and more like just a family, who does ordinary family stuff and deals with ordinary family issues, which really aren't that interesting to read about.

I'm going to try to start writing again. I do occasionally have thoughts that I'd like to record for my memory-challenged self. One change I'm making is that I'm turning off the anonymous comments, because all I get are random Bible verses or nasty notes about my kids. Seriously, people, you have nothing better to do?

To kickstart the restart, I'll leave you with some of D's greatest hits of the summer, reposted from facebook:
  • Insults the kids traded today: "You like Abraham Lincoln." "You like Jomo Kenyatta. " "You're a butler." 
    • D: Do you get how flexible you are from your first parents? Me: Yes, it's genetic. D: Genetic? I thought it was gymnastics.
      • D has invented a country called D_land. It has a lot of billboards, and people there are greedy. Its current president is named San DeMoy. The country fought a civil war in 1961 over how to share the country's three mountains.
      • D, yelling out from the bathroom: "White men, you've had your turn!"
      • D is going to get a job that he describes as "I will look at people's belly buttons and screw them."

      Monday, September 2, 2013

      Our summer, by A.

      This summer I played lot of baseball and the team I was on was DH and in baseball I like batting, caching.

      Then grandma visetet I played with her zip zap.

      When my granmom left we went to Massachusetts to viset my yugs cusin.

      The next Monday I went to the ymca camp. In the camp I played lot of socrr it was fun. I played other gams and sports. They were fun.

      Then paw paw and GG viseted my family. Afster dinner we went to the park we brot the tens ball so we cuoled play cach.

      Then Y and J viseted my family. We went to Linvilla. We picked a lot of peachs and plums, apcats and bluebareas. We went on a hay ride it was fun.

      When Y and J left my family went to Ocean City. We went on rides like the fares wheel. It was lot of fun.

      Then I went on a 20 mile bike ride. It was hard and fun. I did well.

      Then my mom me and my brother went to Morris arboretum. I went on a big tree huose and I saw big bugs. They were big as cars.

      Afster Morris my family went to Maryland to my cusins. We rode our bikes. We played a lot of games. And we went to Adventure Park USA and we went on lot of RIDES. It was lots of fun.

      Then we went to DC to the Smithsonian. We saw a lot of dinsoris and other animals and we saw so meny other things. It was fun and exciting.

      Another thing we did was go to a beach. Me and my mom steped on a fish. I dove in to the waves. I had lots of fun.

      Then we went to West Virginia to visit my dad's brother in the mowtins. We went to a pool. Me and my mom chased ech other. The next day we went to a lake and we swam in the lake.

      After West Virginia we went north to the cave, camping and Knoebles. We camped with my cusins. Camping is lots of fun.

      The last day we went to Knoebels and my favrit ride was Sklooosh and Italian Trapeze. 

      This summer I also did writing, reading and math and every ten books I picked a free books.