15.10.14
























The school office called me this morning.
Josu was sick; I was being summoned to pick him up.

When I arrived at the school, I found his class in the school patio - getting ready for recess.

We needed to grab Josu's backpack out of the classroom, and so his teacher handed the classroom key over to one of his classmates so that she could open the door for us. She was the cutest little girl you've ever seen: her hair was slicked back into a ballerina bun; her black eyes were sharp and happy; her earlobes were sparkling with the golden hoops hanging from them.

"Thanks for helping us! What's your name?" I asked

she smiled at me "my name is Jihad" she said sweetly "it means holy war; it's an Arabic name"

"Ah yes" I told her. "Did you know that my girl Selma's name is from Arabic too?"

"what does it mean?" she asked

"It means peace; her papa and I named her that because we pray every day that she will be a peacemaker on this earth."

"Oh" she said "well, my brother's name is more normal; my parents named him Bruno"

Ah, little one. . . . 
When I prayed for Selma tonight, I prayed for you also - that you too would be a peacemaker on this earth.


5.10.14

There is a little urban garden
right next door to the kid's new school.
On Tuesdays the kids and I volunteer - tending to the earthworms, pulling weeds, and feeding the rabbits and hens.

This week we took Joshua with us; Selma showed him around:






























































This post is actually part of a homework assignment that I did for a online photography class I've been taking this month; It's been so good; so, so good!

2.10.14
























This week: Malachai and Josu decided to start a chess club at school.  They spent the weekend making a portable chess board; it gets rolled up and tucked into a backpack pocket.

So far, no one at school has signed up for chess club (sigh)
but Josu and Malachai sure are cute when they play a game together at home.

(especially when they aren't wrestling each other to the ground because of a chess disagreement)  

29.9.14



Friday is usually Joshua's day off.
It just so happens that the kids don't have class the last Friday of the month (teacher planning day).

So this past Friday morning we headed out into the neighborhood to one of our favorite coffee shops. The coffee shop was so crowded that we couldn't find a spot to sit inside (it's that awesome).

No big deal.

We just squeezed ourselves onto the tiny benches set up on the sidewalk and drank our coffee outside.  It worked out better that way anyways - we were able to simultaneously cheer our kids on as they did some sweet tricks on their skateboards and warn them not to hit the hipsters coming out of the coffee shop.

Also, as we sipped our coffee we met a sweet little family; we exchanged phone numbers and planned a play date.

I'm totally drinking my coffee outside next time.
The sidewalk is where it's at.

So, here's the deal: Joshua and I really like to take family walks, and we think that drinking coffee at a hip local coffee shop is pretty awesome - but mostly - we love meeting people.  How do you meet your neighbors? 






23.9.14


Last week things got pretty exciting around here - being that September is the month that Mexico celebrates its independence from Spain.

The night of September15th is noche Mexicana  - when friends and family get together to feast on pozole and party hard. I made my own pozole this year (whoa), and Joshua headed up making arroz con leche (a dessert he loves, but I'm not so crazy about . . .  so I never make it)

That evening, my the kitchen was alive with life: Selma was stacking the tostadas on a plate, Joshua was hovering over the pot with simmering arroz con leche, Sam was slicing up the radishes for the pozole, the boys were popping in and out - asking how much longer they would have to wait for dinner. . . .

And Selma stuck her head out our kitchen window and yelled:
"We are eating pozole!
and tostadas!
and arroz con leche!

We are TRIPLE Mexican!" 



15.9.14
























Selma:
  • loves loves getting her school work done; she's on top of things!  I've got to put that girl in charge of running my house.
  • has a friend in school named Lluvia (Rain), another named Paloma (Dove) and another named Luna (Moon). Mexico is so awesome. 
  • Told me that when I sent her to school the other day without combing her hair (oops), her friend put it up in a ponytail for her during recess.


2.9.14























On our walk to school we pass a street that glows from the rising sun.
This is good for my pre-coffee, still groggy, early morning soul.

Wednesday, August 27th.
I've been to beginning of the year meetings with all three of the kids teachers now. 

For these meetings, the parents file in to the classroom at the beginning of the school day and line up along the walls. The kids all sit at their desks doing copy work while the teacher lays down the law to the parents about her expectations - pretty standard stuff like:
No running during recess! If students aren't dressed in their complete uniform, they will be denied entrance to the school! Cut your kid's hair! We need a parent to plan the Independence Day celebration! Students must NOT push up their sweater sleeves during class time!

I have managed to introduce myself to parents from each class at the meetings, which I'm thankful for. So now, every morning on my way to school, I hope desperately (and I pray; I totally pray!) that I will recognize the parents that I've met; it's harder than you might think - there are so, so many mamas!
Any time I'm in the vicinity of the school, I walk around with a half-smile plastered on my face . . . and if I perceive even the slightest glimmer of recognition on someone's eyes, I say hello as fast as fast can be. 

It might take a while, but I'll get it eventually . . .