Wednesday, January 30, 2013

January happenings

We took the kids to see Ringling Bros, Barnum & Bailey Circus here in Miami!  The "Dragons" show.  There were lots of acts to enjoy, and overall I was surprised at how toned-down it felt, stylistically.  Maybe they're experiencing budget cuts as well?  There was less glitz than in previous years (which suited me just fine.)

Baz has taken up running.  He decided he wanted to build up to run a 5k here in Miami, so starting in the New Year we began a regular program, running several days a week.  The first day, he managed a mile.  He can now do 3!  So the two of us have signed up to run the Miami Zoo 5k on February 9.

Isa got a Butterfly Kit for Christmas.  We sent away for the caterpillars, and she spent a week observing the 10 of them in two little jars, growing bigger and developing chrysalises.

Then, a couple of days ago, the butterflies emerged!  All 3 kids excitedly went out with me to collect flowers and sugar to feed the butterflies, and we've spent several days now watching them flutter around their netted enclosure.  In our living room.

Nastia and I are getting Isa and Ilya ready to start school this fall.  Besides the schoolwork we do with them at home, once or twice a week we get together in the kitchen to tutor them .  I am teaching Ilya to read, in English, and Nastia works with Isa on Russian.  We Moms look much happier in this picture than the kids, and that is pretty accurate for the whole situation.

The school kids have found a great climbing tree just outside Totem's fence, and they head over there a few times a week to clamber around on it at recess. Thank goodness for this diversion. In every city they seem to latch on to some particular game for outside during school breaks, and in this city they've been stuck on a "boys chase girls and put them in jail" game, which is driving me crazy.

 Palm trees are weird.  And weird stuff falls off them all the time.  This huge piece of - bark? - crashed down right behind us as we were walking the other day.

Greg, his Dad, and the kids went to Manatee Park in Fort Myers, and got to see lots and lots of these beautiful animals.  Apparently there is a power plant there, which discharges warm water into the bay, and the manatees are drawn to the warmth.

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