Sunday with the Tico Family

The cat that walks on my roof and wakes me up. I discovered today that she's crosseyed, as evidenced by the photo.
We ate tamales for lunch in the park... Here's Judit's tamale with the whole family in the background.
Judit had a spoon and was flicking us with it. Ouch! Here cousin Andres is reacting.

Awwwww the cousins Mario & Andres, the sisters Judit & Rebekah, and aunt Sarah.

Lto R in back: the great uncle (I'm not remembering his name... he reminds me of Rusty who used to come listen to our jazz band practices), aunt Sarah, cousin Andres, sister Rebekah, cousin Mario
and in front: Blanca and her step-mom... I also forget her name.

And one of the many gigantic spiders in the backyard. Yuck!!


Siempre Hay Aventuras Nuevas

Title: There are Always New Adventures

Last night, Trish and I went to the Diem's to watch the boys while Steve and Becky went out. We watched Ocean's 12 and I graded papers. Woohoo, what a Friday night! All was normal until...

Trish and I took a taxi home and it dropped us off by her house. I walked the three houses down to my place and then I saw it... the gigantic chain and padlock was closed. The only key for this monster is inside the house. So I yelled, like a great gringa, "Tricia!!" and ran back down to her house. I knew if I didn't catch her before she went inside the house, there would be little hope of, well, sleep (ha, and safety!). So Trish and I discussed what we should do and it was decided that I would sleep in the extra bed... Then we found a cockroach in Trish's room and spent a good 45 minutes chasing it around in circles. By then, it was almost 1am.

Finally I fell asleep in the extra bed... and then the bed broke! I was half asleep when the middle board on the bed fell out! I was quickly awakened... and well, it was an interesting night of sleep to say the least.

Turns out last night, Judit had returned home like 5 minutes before I had, and she had assumed I was home and locked the padlock. This morning when I walked in at 7:15, she was like, "Where were you?" and I tried to avoid the question but it wasn't working. She felt bad about me "sleeping in the street!"

So there's the new adventure of yesterday... we'll see what will happen today!

Is it Possible to Skip the Fractions Chapter?

Teaching is good... hard... funny... sad... all at the same time. So much time and energy and sweat goes into it... It's definitely worth it and some days the concepts are clicking away in student brains, and other days the concepts don't seem to sink in.

For example: fractions. The classic fraction example my students have been exposed to in their 10 years is "Hey, can I have 1/2 of your cookie?" The curriculum introduces numerators and denominators on Day 1, and then immediately on Day 2 we're supposed to be comparing fractions and creating equivalent fractions. Students seemed to be doing fine with the ideas, but yesterday (Day 6 according to curriculum) we were supposed to be changing improper fractions to mixed numbers and so forth... Oh my, you would have thought it was World War III for all their panic.

Um... so quick teaching reflection -- next year we'll have a week of exploratory activities to have more reasoning skills about fractions before jumping into the algorithms.

Ha, thanks for reading my teaching reflections :).


Easter... Costa Rica Style

We had a going away party for the Wilsons AND an Easter celebration all at the same time. Diane brought the painted eggs, Kim V. brought the apple pie, I brought the guacamole... and we were ready to party :).
Josiah sitting in his dad's shadow.
Let the game begin!! Diane brought painted eggs for a classic egg toss... in the street. Crazy gringos!!

Josiah wasn't so sure about this game.

And then Kim threw the egg and it broke on the electrical wires above John's head! He was trying to avoid being hit by flying egg yoke!

We won!!!

I requested a "family" photo. :) These people are seriously my foundation here... What will Trish and I do when they all leave?!?!

Awwww. From Left to Right: Kim V., Peggy (below), me (above), John, Kim Loosa, Trish, Diane, Steve Wilson, Steve Diem holding Josiah, and Becky holding Elliott. What a great group! Steve and Becky Diem and their boys are heading to Argentina in August, Kim Loosa is moving back to Ohio to be closer to John, and Kim V and Peggy are probably moving back to the States as well. Life changes so quickly!

Josiah laughing it up. Now that I look at the photo, it looks like he has to go to the bathroom, ha, but he was just dying laughing... I think!

Josiah and Elliott fighting over a blanket... great brothers.

and Elliott in best form... with his ball.

Playa Montezuma

Alright, so someone asked me what my favorite beach is... and I really don't know. I mean, every beach has it's own characteristics and pros and cons.

This week we stayed in Montezuma, a little artesan's town on the eastern side of Nicoya Peninsula. We hiked to 4 different beaches, hiked to a waterfall, chased crabs, and got sunburns. This is becoming more and more my ideal vacation... this could be a problem when I return to the States!!
Sunset from the ferry on the way back to San Jose.
Who knew there are cactus here? I'm always learning something!

Trish and Kim in their hiking gear.

Playa Piedra Colorado. There were tons of colored rocks stacked on top of one another.

We saw lots of birds migrating north.

And more birds on the move. My camera and I were fascinated with the birds.


We hiked to a waterfall... I know this isn't a "literal" photo of the waterfall, but I think it's a great abstract photo :). I'm loving experimenting with my camera.

Large black rocks lined every beach it seemed.

Our hut. It would be awesome to say that we built it... but that wouldn't be true. We found it and borrowed it for a couple hours.
Another ferry passing our ferry.

Kim V. is the official spotter of monkeys. She spotted this little guy right outside our hotel window. Que lindo!

Mas Fotos de la Obra de Teatro

More photos of the play by request of my mom :) Hi mom! :) Jordan's expressions as The Count
Tara on the ground after the curse is broken.

Nolan reading the curse book while Trey and Johanna "tremble" the chairs in fear.

Tara and her "parents" on stage.

Bethie, beautiful as the town vendor. She sells umbrellas and fish... all in the form of flowers. ha.



No matter where we go right now, us gringos living in Costa Rica are "exotic". Why??

Well, we live in Costa Rica... but we´re from the United States. Therefore, we are unusual and different to everyone who is Costa Rican.

Then, we travel here in Costa Rica to beaches where there are lots of Europeans and Americans. Everything is great and normal and we´re semi-normal in these places... until people ask us where we´re from and we expound on how we´re from the States but we live here and yada yada yada... Then we´re exotic to the tourists because we´ve lived here for 8 months.

And then finally, we go home. Family already knows where we live right now, but when we run into random high school acquaintances and they`re like, "Wow, how you been? You`re so tan! Where are you living?" and then once again, we are somewhat crazy and unusual and definitely set apart because we`re learning a different language and culture and go to hot vacation spots every month that people dream of going for their honeymoon...

Interesting thoughts of the day after a 4 day trip to Playa Montezuma.

We just returned from the beach yesterday, and to make a long excuse short, the Internet on my computer isn´t working and then my tica sister´s computer won´t read my hard drive... so we´ll have to wait on the photos. They´re good, trust me :). Waiting will make them that much better!!

Much love!