Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Another Aidan-ism

I asked Aidan this morning, "What are you doing?"

His reply, "Choking!"

Then he came into the living room with a big smile on his face.  :)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Something's Up

Our kids are acting out of sorts.  The dogs are hyper - barking and howling - and starting barking matches all the time.  Der's students are wonky.  And I'm feeling loopy.  We've come to the conclusion that something is up.  There's a palpable charge in the air, though not sure if it's a good or bad thing.  It's a very weird sensation but we've felt it all day.

We'll keep you posted.  :)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

The American International School of Kingston - enrolling Kirsi and picture

We got a photo from the middle/high school principal of the brand American International School of Kingston new campus.  

We've been asking questions about life there and one of the questions was about a good part-time preschool for Kirsi.  We assumed that AISK would be like the other schools we've worked at in that they would not allow part-time preschool students but they do.  We'll be putting in Kirsi's application this week!

Monday, March 22, 2010

More kiddo things

Today, we were in a new store and I was holding Aidan.  He showed me one of the hanging lights.  Then he said to me, "Mommy, three lights."  And there were three lights hanging in a row!  He hasn't even shown interest in counting so for him to know that there were three lights there really shocked me. 

Last night during prayers, Kirsi had a special request.  She said, "God, I really want to be a princess.  Would you please make me a princess?"  :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Me turn

We are definitely into the "me" stage at our house.  Aidan knows what he wants and isn't shy about asking for it and  Kirsi is getting used to this.  We've had several screaming matches of "Me!!", "No me!!", "No me!!".  Let me tell you, it gets loud.

This morning, we had a breakthrough.  A bit of background info...last night, Kirsi fell asleep with one of Aidan's socks on her hand.  When she woke up this morning, she still had it on.  She came downstairs to say good morning.  Aidan saw the sock on her hand and he said, very nicely I  might add, "Me turn."  I asked him, "Your turn for what?"  He replied, "Socky-poo".  So Kirsi let him wear it, no problems.  It was so awesome to see!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Kirsi's Artwork

Kirsi painted this the other day for Pascuala for her birthday. :)

She spent so much time on it and really thought it through.  She used four different paint brushes as well.

I don't know art, but there's something about this that I really like.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Kirsi and Aidan Videos on a Sunday Morning

Click here to see Aidan's St. Patrick's Day Dance!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Friday, March 12, 2010

My first digital layout!

I've been thinking about trying out digital scrapbooking for a while now and I finally decided to take the plunge.  We bought Photoshop Elements and I signed up for a fantastic online class (at and I did my first layout.  It's pretty basic but I'm really proud of it!  I felt pretty comfortable doing it and I think I just may enjoy this way of scrapbooking too!  Here it is:

Thursday, March 11, 2010

A big one

Today, just before noon, we had another big shaking up.  They are now telling us it was a 6.9, though earlier reports said 7.2; all I know was that it was big.  The kids and I were just leaving the playground at Lider when it happened.  We were driving so we didn't feel anything at first.  Then we stopped to turn left and I saw the windows of a store across the street moving.  It was like they were shaking, like waves.  But I figured they were just repairing the shop and that's why.  But then, a second later, I felt the car moving.  I asked the kids whether they were moving around and shaking the car and Kirsi said no.  It was such a weird sensation, like we were in a boat in really rough water.  Like riding the big waves.

When we managed to turn, I saw a man who had gotten out of his car and was talking to another man.  He motioned that there was shaking and then I got it.  We were in the middle of another earthquake!  I didn't feel anything else but apparently it lasted at least 20 seconds.  They say that it measured 6.9 and I believe it because we were moving, big time.

We were at home for about 10 minutes when we felt the ground moving again.  Nothing like we had just been in but it was enough to rattle the gate outside and move the light fixture in the living room and rattle the pictures on the walls.  From that one, my head started spinning, like I'd just been on a ride at an amusement park and I'm still feeling goofy 4 1/2 hours later! 

Nido evacuated to the fields and parks outside and they were out there until 2:30.  Der was busy taking groups of kids from their teachers up to their parents who were waiting at the gate.  He made at least 25 trips up and down in the hot sun; he's tired and sunburned now.  The kids were well prepared and did the duck, cover and hold with no problems.  The biggest problem was that the elementary students were out in the sun for over 2 1/2 hours with no lunch or bathroom breaks.  They did get some water later on. 

Here are some news articles on the quake:

We're all good, just shaken and stirred.  :)

Early morning snuggles

This morning Aidan woke up early, around 6:30.  I let him chatter away until he got too loud.  I brought him into bed with me and he didn't want to lay down and go back to sleep.  Instead, we snuggled and sang songs and played little games.  It was fantastic!  I love those special moments early in the morning.  Even though Simba woke me up at 4:15 and I wasn't able to get back to sleep, those snuggles made my day!

Monday, March 08, 2010

Conversation with Aidan this morning

Aidan:  "Daddy?"
Me:  "Daddy had to go to work."
Aidan:  "Working."
Aidan:  "Cheap."
Me:  "Yes, Sweetie, it's cheap that Daddy has to go to work."

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Que es esta maquinita?

The other afternoon, we were watering our front lawn.  We looked out our front window and saw that several kids from the neighbourhood - about 10 - 12 yeas old - were staring at the sprinkler.  They were running their hands through the water, sticking their heads in it and generally just in awe of this "thing".  When I went out to move it, one little girl asked me, "Where did you buy this little machine?"  :)  Goes to show you how sheltered some kids' lives are.  Here in our neighbourhood, they either have an underground automatic watering system or their nannies water with just the hose.  So interesting!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Kirsi's Prayer & Looting

At supper last night, we asked  Kirsi to lead us in prayers:

Come Lord Jesus
Be our guest
And let this food
Unto us be fresh

You gotta love kids!

3 more earthquakes/aftershocks during the night last night.  A couple of real good shakes.

School is closed this week as there is no electricity there.  They've been running on generators but that's consuming fuel that is in short supply right now.  The hospitals rightly get fuel first.

Lots of looting going on.  Someone came to Pascuala's door the other night and said that he was from Concepcion and that he had nothing.  Pascuala's neighbor shouted out "don't believe him, he lives down the street."

And it's not like they're taking food or water or blankets; they're taking TVs and washing machines.  It's just opportunistic thievery at it's best.

As well, some are freaking out with the groceries here.  A friend was shopping and she had her cart loaded up.  She went to get some item down the isle and someone else took her cart just because it was already loaded.  It's a weird mass mob mentality as the shelves are fully stocked and no one is going without (at least in our neighborhood) anything.

For us, it's life as normal except for the fact that we still have one bathtub full of water just in case we love water for a while.  We've also got a few extra groceries lying around and we're careful about not driving the car unless necessary.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

How You Can Help

There are many people who have asked us if there's anything they can do to help out with the relief efforts following the earthquake in Chile on Saturday morning.  Der and I think that the best way for people to get money to us so we can pass it along is through PayPal.  We have a PayPal account under Derwin's name.  If you already have an account, just enter Der's email address in the Send space.  It's .  If you don't but would like to set an account up, email one of us and we will help you do it.  If you pay via PayPal Credit or through a bank account, we don't believe there are any charges.  We do ask you to please pay the transfer fees if paying by credit card, though.  Thanks.

Our nanny, Pascuala, came to work today and said that everything in her house is fine, thank goodness.  She said that there are some panels she will need to replace in her dining room but it's not essential so she's not worried about it for now.  Plus, she will need to put money away to be able to pay for it.  However, her father, sister and her husband live on a farm near Melipilla, which is southwest of Santiago.  His house was severely damaged by the earthquake.  The kitchen caved in and the rest of house is not in good condition.  The three of them are living in the one small room that is inhabitable.  He went to the municipality to see if they will help with the reconstruction and they said that there was nothing they could do.  He has to wait to get the quote, which will be at least 15 days, then it's up to him.  We, personally, will be donating our money to help Mr. Santibanez to reconstruct his house (if he will accept the help).

People from Der's school, Nido de Aguilas, are putting together a big shipment of necessary goods to send down to the areas in need.  We're collecting food, clothing, blankets, diapers, etc. to put in the shipment.  Any donations we get, we will buy these items to add to the shipment.

Un Techo Para Chile is a well-known organization here which helps build houses for those in need.  They have been around for many years and are a reputable organization.  They are taking donations specifically for the earthquake effort.  I don't know what percentage goes directly to the cause (and how much is for administrative costs) but I can't imagine it would be that high.  I do not recommend you sending a wire transfer to Chile as, in our experience, the costs are very high both to send and to receive.  It would be better to donate through your credit card.  You'll find a link in English, "Donate".

Thank you to everyone who wants to help out.  We really appreciate it. 

Update:  a friend of ours who has a bank account in the U.S. has given us his account number and routing number if you'd rather deposit money to his account.  He is the Assistant Principal of the Elementary School at Nido de Aguilas and will be helping with the food and clothing drive.  If you'd rather go this route, email us and we will give you the info.

Phuket - Be Nice or Get Out

The second part of our December break was spent in a little AirBnB 3m from the beach in Phuket, Thailand. The majority of our time was spe...