Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Happy Tiradentes Day!

Today is a holiday (see my blog friend Corin for a great blurb about Tiradentes), and we've been having lots of fun post "first-day-of-school". Here's what I could get from the kids--I was having problems with the camera, and by the time we actually arrived at the school, Bea was clinging to me for dear life, and Dora and Sebastian just took off with excitement.

The video was taken after walking uphill for about 20 minutes during the heat of the day. You'll notice that Bea is sitting on what looks like a seat, but it's really the sidewalk. Not the easiest place to walk around. I love how grumpy Dora is--the funny thing was that they started running shortly after this was taken because they were so enthusiastic about playing!

Bea was a little fearful the first 30 minutes or so. They first take the kids to a play room where the wait to go to their classroom, and I think she was confused and concerned because she had seen her classroom the day before, and was expecting to go there. Once she got to her classroom, she was better. Her teachers just loved all over her, and kept hugging her and kissing her (yes, kissing!) Some of the folks who work in Bea's class speak a little English, so they were helping her out. I left after about an hour, and they were surprised, because usually kids only stay half of the first day, and even then the parents stay the whole time. But Bea was happy as a clam, and having no problems. I checked in with Dora, and she was surrounded by a bunch of girls, showing her little toys and asking her questions. Dora was all smiles, and I asked if she was fine, and she said "Of course!" There is a little girl who recently moved from Maryland in her class, and she is bilingual (her mom is Brazilian, Dad is American) and she helped Dora out quite a bit. Sebastian's class was taking a test, but Sebastian was happy to just draw pictures of dinosaurs. He told me later that one of his teachers spoke a little English, so she helped him out. Matt went early to pick them up, but ended up just waiting because the kids were fine and didn't want to leave. When parents come to pick up at 6:00, the kids hang out at the playground, and the Cantina opens up (all schools here have Cantinas) and parents just hang around and talk. Matt and the kids didn't get home until about 7:30 pm, but they were all happy and had a great day!

So while the kids were at school I went again to the English school to hash out pay and details. They pay isn't spectacular, but I feel really good about the company, and they offered me four additional classes much closer to home to sweeten the deal. Thankfully the classes all fall during times when either the kids are in school, or Matt is off and can watch them. I'm supposed to start next Monday if we can work out my training schedule on Thursday and Friday.

Today we enjoyed the day by going to the Parque Municipal with our American friends, swimming, eating chocolate ice cream (have I mentioned that the ice cream here is amazingly rich and creamy?), and I'm going to make some pizza for dinner. Oh, and Sebastian met another buddy that is his age that lives in our apartment building! Very fun and relaxing day!


  1. Wow, Shelley, I just got caught up. You guys have accomplished so much!!! The kids made it to school and they weren't too scared and they even met some buddies. I'm so glad you're writing this blog. You're a very good story teller and I can't wait to read more:) And by the way happy belated birthday to Bea, can't believe she and Gavin are already 3!!!

  2. Shelley,
    That's amazing that the kids were so brave and not scared to go to school the first day in a strange country where they don't know the language! Yay!! Glad it went so smoothly. Do they really go to school only in the afternoon to evening? Not in the morning? Weird.