Wednesday, February 25, 2009

This life...

My wayward attempts to post during this month have been pathetic. And no signs of improvement on the horizon, since as soon as we all get well, some different scum-sucking germ comes around and hits us. Does Costco sell huge jars of Tylenol Cold & Cough? This is crucial information. I use it very sparingly, and even so... 4 kids getting dosed at night = a vat of it. I'm pretty sure some of the yuck coming out of these noses should be turned over to Jacques Cousteau. I know I have seen it in some of the deep sea studies, where the creatures have neon-glowing parts. peace...ommm...sleep-filled nights...

Hope you said it with me.
Now on to more interesting topics...

I went around the world in 50 minutes this week - and no, I was not taking Nyquil at the time. Cole & I went to International Night at his school! And my neighbors, toting their 2, 3 and 4 kids respectively, eyed me enviously and called it a "night out" since I had only Cole with me. Various parents volunteered to create table-top displays of their home countries, and many of them had food from their native lands. It was very interesting, if a bit rushed since Cole's goal was to:

1. Find every country that was giving out candy (like favors in prison, the kids whispered to each other as they passed "Russia's got candy! Switzerland's got chocolate!")

2. Get his "passport" stamped at each table in the manner of the Amazing Race.

Which is how we whirled around in 50 minutes.

It was spectacular to see how many countries were represented by people that had recently immigrated from that country: Sweden, Turkey, Serbia, Pakistan, Russia, China, India, Japan, Sri Lanka, Iran - the diversity at this school rocks.
I can only imagine the tolerance these kids will grow up with. No longer will their world history lessons be about strangers from across the globe. No longer will the conflicts and wars of their time be about cultures foreign to their eyes. When you sit with a Japanese child as you learn about WWII, they are simply humans, not former enemies.

This is beautiful to me.

What was also beautiful was the expression on Cole's face when he greedily scooped up a British scone - and found out it was clotted cream on top, not whipped cream. Those limey Brits, with their trickery and unsweetened cream & floury lumps! I say good day!
Better luck at the Swedish table, where the lovely lady handed out cake with real whipped cream and fresh strawberries on top. I rolled out my Swedish, having secretly hoped there would be a native Swede at that table. Cole and I exclaimed "Tack!" as we received our cakes, and said "Hejda!" as we stepped away. The Swede smiled and asked "Ar du svensk?" Aha! A moment to be proud of - with 2 words I sounded native, and she had asked if I was Swedish. I hated to spoil it. Could have nodded and simply split. But I was not done yet - "Nej... men jag kan pratar en lite." I 'fessed up that I could only speak a little.
I walked away proud that I had retained the lessons learned 14 years ago in a land far away. And promptly called Mimmi to squeal! Particularly because it was simple luck that her lessons included that phrase - her idea of education being more along the lines of Bethany-as-a-bizarre-pet-that-can-speak-goofy-phrases. Funny? Yes. Useful? Only if I meet a Swedish lunatic that needs no rhyme or reason to conversation. Or one that drinks a lot.

So International Night was a brief whirlwind of unfamiliar tastes and the familiar packed heat of many small children in a frenzy. Next up is preschool registration for the girls today, in which I will hope to get TWO spots in the ONE class they have at the elementary school. Visualize, visualize that.
And now back to the whirlwind of tending my brood of small snotty ones.
House pictures coming soon! The new roof will be on by the end of the week, so I'm waiting to take the real "wow" shot...


  1. I want to to an international night! That sounds like fun--and like something they would do in Carrboro! :)--not in the LW.
    I hope y'all get better soon--spring will bring it.
    Can't wait to see the house.

  2. I'm so proud of you Bethany! Stefan and I have to get a home phone so we can keep up your language skills, it will be like old times back in New York :)


Put it right here, babe!