A World without walls
everyday life while homeschooling overseas
Wow! What a Sunday! It was very reminiscent of our Sundays in Sri Lanka--LONG and gone from home ALL DAY LONG. Church was moved up to 8am, so we left home at 7:30--and luckily caught a ride with our neighbor, which was lovely because we had SO MUCH STUFF!! We made it church, and I got to play the piano for the primary--which is one of my most favorite things to do! The kids are SO funny, AND when Peter's in there, I get to translate for him during the sharing time lesson. It was such a funny day, as it honestly had a feeling of Christmas! Why is that? Well, the PROPHET was coming to Bolivia to speak to us! Wow! So after sacrament meeting, we had about 1 1/2 hours until buses were coming to pick us all up and drive us all up to El Alto to a big stadium where as many members of the church as could possibly make it were going to see and hear the prophet!
Well, there's a cute girl in our ward who has really taken a liking to my kiddos, and she apparently had a talent show at her school where she had to dance that day right after church and she BEGGED Claire to come. So Claire and I went with her (and her mom) to her to school to watch her dance. It's not one of our regular Sunday activities--since there was loud music blasting all over and food for purchase...and it was HOT! The sun here is killer in the middle of the day. We watched some dancers and wondered why they were there (ha ha), and saw some cute kids doing some funny things. We were getting a little worried when they started an hour late and each group kept adding more and more things to their presentations! GAH! We were on a timetable! We even got some food, and by that time Claire was super ticked and absolutely refused to eat any of it, so I was trying to shove it down while no one was looking. Luckily, I only ate about 1/3 of it, when the mom rushed over because her kiddo was starting! We watched her dance, then luckily Stephanie (the girl) was hungry and we had to go back to the church to make the bus, so she ate the rest of the food (very happily, I might add)!
We made it to the church JUST as the buses pulled up to pick everyone up! Whew! We loaded and headed out within minutes. After about 15 minutes on the bus, we all heard a loud 'WHOOSH', and wondering what it was, we pulled over. One of the back dualies had been slashed! Not sure if it was preexisting or if we ran over an entire glass panel...but it was gone! So, off we all piled out of the bus so they could change the tire! It was really ingenious, though--the bus driver put a piece of wood under the twin tire that was still whole, and they were able to change the other tire without having to raise the entire bus! Nice! It really took them only about 10 minutes to have it all done and all of us back on the bus! Exciting stuff!
We made it up to El Alto with no more exciting adventures--hardly even any traffic! But the line to get in was LOOOOONG! Whew! We stood in line for about 2 hours before we got in and sat down. We were pretty far, BUT that got us some good pictures AND Andrew had the forethought to bring his super awesome binoculars!! :D We all passed around snacks and the binoculars for the next 3 hours until the prophet came...then we got to listen! The fun part was that the prophet, his wife, and Elder Stevenson (one of the 12 apostles) and his wife all spoke in English!! They all had translators. Honestly, though, I still find it the WEIRDEST thing ever that I understand perfectly both the original speaker AND the interpreter. Just makes me giggle--I love it!
It was a wonderful meeting--with reminders to teach our children the important things in life: Keep the commandments of God; study the scriptures and the Life of Christ every single day; Serve others; Go to the temple!! Because really, what are the most important things in life? Our family and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That's it, really. Everything else is just superfluous. Yes, everything we do impacts those and those around us, so we should be living good, honest lives and trying to help our families and other people around us. And everything we do gives us experience that makes us who we are; that builds character and influences our path in life. But family and the gospel are where are all of that should be centered. Lovely.
After the meeting came the fun part: Getting out! HA! Try getting 5,000+ people out of a building with only 3 accessible doors to get out! Can we say nightmarish fire hazard?!? We eventually all lovingly shouldered our way out into the freezing cold El Alto night air (which was actually quite welcome after being really warm inside...), and one of the guys on our bus found us (we're not hard to spot--large family of North Americans tends to stand out a bit) and showed us to where the bus was. What a relief to sit down! We waited for everyone else on our bus to be found, then we headed home. Lovely Sister Luchy gave us a ride home--which was incredibly hilarious because we had SO MUCH STUFF--and we were home by 10pm, tired but uplifted from our day's experience.
Now we're well into our Monday. I let the big kids sleep in...so they'll be going to afternoon seminary today. We did some school this morning, then Claire had to go to the dentist (more root canal work). We passed by our dear friend's house to borrow a cello for a few weeks, then came back home. We did some group history, then Andrew and Josh tuned the cello (it's new and never been tuned) while Peter and I marked his Bible with fun pictures over some of the stories and Claire did some Chinese homework. Now Josh is working on a business class project: He has to turn in a 'Code of Conduct' for the business that he's starting. His teacher said he could either turn in the document OR make it into a video--well OBVIOUSLY he's making it into a video, and his siblings are starring in it...and they're making it rather silly and full of their trademark antics. I love how they all band together to help each other do these fun projects! I'm looking forward to seeing the final edit. I've heard they're almost done...
I'm off to clean my kitchen and make some beef stir-fry for dinner. Mmmmm...
Who Am I?
As a Stay At Home Mom of 4 wonderful children, I have the amazing opportunity not only to home school them, but to do so in many different places! I am married to the most amazingly wonderful (and handsome) man in the whole world! Together, we seek out, every day, that Joy in the Journey that makes life exciting!
by Dan Brown
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