The GRE, Vinifan, a clausura, and Family Day

The GRE

Greg took off this past Thursday evening and headed for Lima.  He went to take the GRE today.  He needs this score for his applications into doctoral programs.  I couldn’t be any prouder of my husband in pursuing this dream.  It is something we have talked about since before we married, and it is a blessing to be married for almost 10 years and still be on the same page as far as life goals go.  He put a lot of late night study hours into preparing for this test.  We both got a kick out of his math practice problems.  Good thing he married a middle level math major.  I will say, though, that the problems he was having to solve were from an Algebra 2 level.  (He called me into the room multiple times to ask, “Meg, explain this to me…”)  Why does a theology doctor need to remember the quadratic formula???  Anyhoo, this wife is proud of her husband.  I am confident that he did the best he could do.

Vinifan

Our kids start school after summer break this coming Monday.  We are thrilled that ALL THREE will be going to school this year.  While I am super excited about this aspect of freedom in our lives, the bank account has certainly taken a harder hit with all the back-to-school items to purchase, and this momma is wiped out from all the running around we have to do to find everything.  Here is the back-to-school prep in a nutshell:

  1. sign-up your kids at the school office.  Get all lists for each grade level.
  2. take your kids to get passport type photos made (the school uses them on various forms)
  3. figure out what vaccinations your child is missing (my bad).  I will be taking both Maggie and Cohen tomorrow morning to get up-to-date on their vacunas.
  4. Take child that hasn’t worn a uniform before to store or seamstress that is making uniforms for this new year, order correct size, pay down payment
  5. Go to a book store, drop off your list for school items, come back ONE HOUR later to find that they are still completing the items on the lists.  Pay an arm and a leg for the school supplies for the entire year (and this doesn’t include text books or all the personal hygiene items!)
  6. Go to bodega to buy boxes and wrapping paper, tape, VINIFAN (yes, the title of this section)
  7. Write each child’s name about a million times on tiny pieces of masking tape to place on every.single.thing that you bought on their list (I am talking every marker, colored pencil, paint container, etc)
  8. Take a day to go into the city with your “text book list” and buy all the various text books at all the various locations.  So fun.
  9. Prepare box with wrapping paper to resemble a “cubby” for your child’s items
  10. Begin Vinifan process.  Something I despise!  Vinifan is a brandname for a plastic that serves as a clear book cover.  They want everything covered.  Every text book, every notebook (that you buy 2 of for every subject), every 3-ring binder.
  11. Add all other items from list like toilet paper, hand soap, etc (the school does not provide ANY of this)
  12. Take kids the first day of school, sit with the teacher as she checks off the list to see that you bought everything.
just part of Cohen's list
just part of Cohen’s list
every single item
every single item

Multiply this by 3 and OH MY WORD!  This is our last back-to-school year here in Peru, and I cannot say that I will miss this part of the process.  While Greg has been gone, I have been Vinifanning like crazy (and yes, I just turned that word into a verb).  I have Cohen and Maggie’s “cubbies” completed.  Can I get a Halleluyer?!

Clausura

I blogged about Ana’s art class last month.  This month, Ana wanted to repeat another art class, and Mags took a Modern Dance class.  Ana loved her art once again.  This month was with a different set of teachers.  She worked a lot on painting or replicating other people’s drawings or paintings.  Here is some of her work that was featured at the exhibit today…

her love for Angry Birds showed
her love for Angry Birds showed

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Maggie enjoyed her dance class.  I was a little shocked at the dance moves and choice of music when she started (then I remembered where we lived), but she didn’t ever seem to get the belly roll down (ha!) and it was great to get her out of the house to do something fun and different.  I videoed her final dance.  I will have to get Greg to help me to post the video.  She did a great job.

showing some sister love before Mag's performance
showing some sister love before Mag’s performance

Our Day Off

Greg was in Lima, but Friday is still our family day.  I took all three kids to the girls’ clausura, and then we headed to the mall.  We ate at Burger King (or “Hamburger King” if you are Cohen), got a special treat of ice cream, and I watched them play on the “token” rides as I like to call them (except I paid nothing).  🙂  We were out about 5 hours as a family.  We sure missed Greg, but I was happy to do something with the kids and not be cooped up in the house this last Friday of their summer vacation.

ice cream treat
ice cream treat

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this word is perfect for how I feel about these three
this word is perfect for how I feel about these three

I am more than ready to see my GREg when he gets home (see what I did there?!).  And I think we are ready to kick off this new school year… if I can get my Vinifan all in gear.  🙂

 

The GRE, Vinifan, a clausura, and Family Day

Ana and Art 2014

Ana's art class on a field trip
Ana’s art class on a field trip

Something I have discovered here that I LOVE is the classes offered during the summer months.  Institutes and schools offer “talleres,” or workshops, to kids of all ages during January and February.  One can find classes for instruments, dance, art, swimming, etc.  Ana took swimming classes last year.

Ana got some Christmas money from her grandparents, and we decided to put it toward an art class this January.  She meets 3 times a week, 2 hours at a time.  She loves art, and this class has not disappointed us.  We live in a culture of many “starving” artists.  Arequipa values art, and it is not a surprise to see an art exhibit in the city center or displayed in a place for the people to notice.

Today, I enjoyed accompanying her on a class field trip.  I have been so impressed with the various techniques she has been learning.  Today was no exception.  The teacher, her “profe,” took them to a popular spot in Arequipa (walking distance from their art institute) to sit in the grass and paint the trees around them.  It was a beautiful morning, and I had a lot of fun taking pictures.  The profe actually recruited me to take pictures of the whole class in action for him to use in a pamphlet.

We are so proud of Ana and her love of something so creative.  It has been fun to see her learn actual art techniques.  We are already considering another art class for February, and possibly signing her up for something throughout the school year.  Might as well for the price! 😉

AG in tree art action
AG in tree art action

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her profe let her use his really cool art stand set-up
her profe let her use his really cool art stand set-up
Ana isn't content with just trees.  She had to add a fountain and the volcano Misti.
Ana isn’t content with just trees. She had to add a fountain and the volcano Misti.

Some other art pieces she has brought home this month…

painting a vase sitting on the table that day
painting a vase sitting on the table that day
exploring color combinations
exploring color combinations

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potato stamp art
potato stamp art
potato stamp art
potato stamp art
potato stamp art
potato stamp art
Ana and Art 2014