Sunday, February 6, 2011

Hm, sorry about that...

Kristen says...

Wow, my apologies for the severe lack of bloggage lately.

Let's see, what do I need to catch up on? Um, Happy Chinese New Year! Year of the Rabbit!
Thanks, Maricarmen, for the cool Año del Conejo bling for my BB!

The past few weeks have been busy for us...but there's also been quite a bit of couch time too. After I finished my curtains posting a few weeks ago we went over to the home of a friend, and within an hour of that I was back home not feeling well. It wasn't anything major, just a little virus, I think. I never ran a fever, got sick to my stomache or anything like that, just a general feeling of crappiness, a bit of an ache in the limbs, and a headache.

I basically lived on the couch that weekend, and called in for my first sick day in Honduras. That Monday I slept and slept and tatted and tatted. I'm down to about 35-40 minutes/motif now, and I'm almost 1/3 done with the first placemat! I decided to make them a little smaller, because our table now is pretty small, and I can always add to them later. Rather than 12x8 I'm making them 9x6, and I have 2 rows of 9 done. I also did one center motif, just to give you an idea what it looks like:
I think it's coming along nicely...slowly, but nicely

I headed back to school on Tuesday, but it's amazing how missing just one day really throws off your week...

That week was different, anyway, because Discovery hosted the ABSH Spelling Bee last Saturday (the 5th), with students from 28 schools in attendance. This was one of 2 required Saturdays for us (something not unusual in the overseas teaching world, but still a bit of a bummer) and was a very interesting experience. This spelling bee was a little different than the one you are probably thinking of. Instead of standing up in front of a huge crowd of people, each level of spellers were sequestered in a room with just their competition, a caller, a judge, a scribe, another person, and a Discovery School host teacher. No parents, no crowd, just a bunch of kids and a few adults.

In my room, the 27 participating 5th graders were made to stand in a big circle for the entire competition. When it was their turn to spell they walked out of their place in the circle to the judge's table, were read the word, a sentence, and the word again, and then had the opportunity to ask for any number of helpful information, including but not limited to word root, word language/country of origin, definition, another sentence, even for another person to pronounce the word if they didn't like the way the caller said it. They had 10 seconds from the end of their last question (if they had any) to begin spelling, or they would be eliminated. They had to say the word, spell it, then say the word again to show they were finished. If they were correct, they went back to the circle. If they were incorrect, they sat down...and then got up and asked to go to the bathroom, or to go get some food, or to play, or a million other things 5th graders feel they must do. The competitors who were still in the competition had to continue standing until they too, were out.

It took FOREVER, and I'm sure you can imagine how well 27 fifth graders behaved being cooped up in a small classroom, being made to stand for 2-3 hours (or sit quietly after they had been eliminated.) Needless to say, I was glad when it was over...the experience really made me appreciate 1) how awesome our Discovery kids are, and 2) how much I like NOT having to teach 5th graders! I know there's not much age difference between 5th and 6th, but there is a behavior difference, I assure you!

Because we had a judges' meeting last Friday night at 5:00, and had to be at the competition by 7:30 Saturday morning, one of the teachers who lives an hour away and his son stayed with us Friday night. We hadn't had visitors for a while, and I like cooking for other people, so I decided to make home-made spaghetti sauce and my grandma's delicious fudge brownies. I am happy to report my bad luck in the kitchen is officially gone!

(I also made Oreo Balls (haha) in honor of our guests...but Chris and I devoured them before they ever even got there...oops!)

Not only are they super-delicious, Oreo Balls (haha) are about the easiest thing ever to make, but they can get a little messy:

My suggestion is to skip the towel and just make them on the wax paper on the cookie sheet, then pop them straight in to the fridge or freezer so they set up as quickly as possible. (You can also eat them more quickly that way!!) Here's the link for the recipe, if you're interested).

So we had a one-day weekend, but still managed to have fun. In honor of the Super Bowl, some of the gringos of the area decided to get together for a pickup football (the REAL kind, not soccer) game, and invited Chris along. It occurs to me now that I should have been taking pictures during this game, but he basically wore his uniform from when he played in the states:
(They were the Jackalopes, if you're wondering what is on the front of his jersey)

Needless to say, after 2 games of football (and he'd spent his time during the Spelling Bee the day before teaching a group of Honduran kids to play, too), Chris was very tired, so we spent the rest of the day vegging in front of the TV, watching the Super Bowl Pregame, the actual game, and the back of our eyelids as we went to bed about 2 minutes after it ended. :)

This week has gone fairly quickly, and we've actually gotten quite a bit done. The car went to the shop for a tune-up (I can use the air conditioning again!!!!) and Pip has a vet appointment to get an allergy shot...nothing too exciting or Honduran happening in our lives right now.

It's amazing how quickly your daily lives and routines can feel so similar to what you grew up with even in an other country. I suppose that's because we've made it that way...I still drive to school, I still teach, I still cook things like meatloaf and spaghetti, I still watch TV from the US, I still live in a city with McDonald's and Applebees (even if I don't eat there)...sometimes the only way I remember I live in Honduras is when I walk downstairs and try to talk to Wilmer...and remember that I have to speak Spanish, not English. (This whole not feeling like I'm in Honduras thing, by the way, is killing my Spanish...I'm learning at a snail's pace..sigh).

Anyway, that's about all. I have some other (kind of funny) pictures to share, but they're on the camera at that will just give me more of a push to blog again more quickly than the last time!! :)

Have a great weekend! Happy Valentine's Day on Monday!



  1. My best spanish is spoken to myself...because I'm purposefully trying to speak spanish...When I have to talk to other people - forget it...I trip over my words and all that (except when I'm flustered/angry...then it comes out pretty well).

    Those oreo balls look fantastic! I might have to try those!

  2. i heard that Honduras has the blackberry que todos tienen BBS! i love the rabbit charm btw! :) very cute! i can't wait to go back to Honduras, i miss it dearly!


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