and School Search

This is my seventh year to home school and because we lived in rural Honduras, the decision to teach my kids from home was the most practical one we could make.   The Honduran public school system was in chaos, with constant national teacher-union strikes that forced children to constantly miss school reducing the school year, some years, to less than 100 days.  We also did not have an adequate private school option for our oldest daughter, who at that time was five years old.  Our decision was reinforced by the fact that, all the other ex-pats families we worked with home-schooled their children.  We also observed the the quality of the kids being educated at home.  They displayed many characteristics we wanted to see in our own kids.  The homeschoolers around us were polite, smart, talented and able to carry on an intelligent conversations with a varied age group of people.  We assessed our family values and decided home school would be the best choice.  It was not a difficult decision, so our home school journey began. Continue reading

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and Our Kids’ Goodbye Parties

Even though kids can be very resilient and are quite adaptable, it can still be very hard for them to part with friends.  This is why we decided to allow each child to wrap up their time in Honduras by giving them the opportunity to say goodbye to special people in their lives in their own unique way.  They were able to choose (1) who they wanted to invite to their party and (2) what type of party they wanted to have.

Each party was different; but they did have a few things in common:

  1. They were all very simple.  Since the purpose of each party was to spend a memorable time with friends -and I’m not a very good party decorator-, we went “all natural” with the decoration.  We used what we had and spent money mostly on food, disposable plates, forks, napkins, etc.
  2. There were blank note cards and markers for guests to write a special message to the parting child.  If the guest was a child who could not write, I asked the child’s parent to write for them.  We loved collecting the notes at the end of the party and reading the special messages from friends.

Below you will find a picture and brief description of each of the three parties we had: Continue reading

and Reverse Culture-Shock

Sometime after Thanksgiving 1984, after almost 3 years of living in Boulder, CO, we left for home (Read 6 Ways We Were Welcomed to the USA.) Four kids under the age of 10 were loaded in the back of a blue Subaru station wagon with most of our possessions in the cartop carrier.  We were driving 2,865 miles back to our house, our family, our home in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.  We stayed a night or two in Houston, crossed the border to Mexico, stayed in a few hotels along the way and made it to Mexico City by Christmas.  We spent an unforgettable Christmas with Honduran friends, had the best flan I can ever remember tasting.   Continue reading

and Things our 7 Year Old will Miss

FullSizeRenderI just found this handwritten note that my youngest daughter wrote.  After correcting misspelled words, I had her write it down again and asked for her permission to post it on this blog.  She has come a long way from the first time we announced to our kids that we were moving.  She was not thrilled,at first.  She expressed sadness and disappointment.  “Mom, I’ve lived here all my life,” she said. We brought her here as an eight month old chubby baby.  This is where she learned to walk, talk, read, write, ride her bike, swim, meet her first best friend and so many other things that mark a child’s life.   Continue reading

and Welcoming Foreign Families

IMG_3453It has been more than 30 years since my parents took their four children on a journey that would change our lives. We left our home country, Honduras, and traveled to Boulder, Colorado in the winter.  One of my first memories of that journey was looking through the airplane window down at the endless white of winter snow.  I had never seen snow before.  My dad, who had been awarded a scholarship to study at CU, was waiting for us at the airport gate with all our winter coats.  He had gone six month ahead of us to begin his ESL (English as a Second Language) studies before commencing his master’s degree in economics.  Those three years in Boulder, as I recall them, were pretty amazing. Why?  What made them special?  Here are some suggestions of what I am able to remember: Continue reading