Friday, March 18, 2011

Homeschool Conference......or "Freezing My Tail Off in Macchiato"

Notice our new airport that is being built! "Folgers" is hosting the "Macchiato" Games in 2012 so we are getting lots of new upgrades. That is also why we are getting our new bridge.

Last week found the kids and I embarking on our first flight without Barry. We flew from "Folgers" (our city) to "Starbucks" (the capitol city on another island) and made it, surprisingly well and without any hitches. Of course the night before we were without electricity, had leaks all over the house from a major rainstorm, and had our water pump go completely out, but flying out the next day....other than an hour delay, not a problem! Life is never dull here that is for sure!

Foreign homeschooling moms from all over this country, and a couple of neighboring ones, gathered at Taman Safari for testing and encouragement. It was well worth the effort to get there as it was a great time of deepening friendships for us as well as our kids. We were completely spoiled by a team of 20 from Virginia and Swift Creek BC. If any of you are reading this...THANK YOU!!! There were daily prizes for kids and moms. Items like 6 packs of DP, Twizzlers, Cereals, Pop-Tarts, pecans, etc were given freely and made it that much more fun for everyone. Not to mention that at our mom meetings we were given homeschool catalogs and other magazines (a real treat over here!). Also, they brought each of us a $15.00 gift of our choice (we got a game) and had some curriculum catalogs on CD for us, some of which were not even in print yet in the US! How great is that? While the kids did testing and had other fun classes, we had enrichment classes and small group meetings.

The Safari resort was BEAUTIFUL, if you ever get a chance to stay in a rainforest I highly recommend it! However, sadly to say, the resort itself was not very accommodating and began charging us left and right for all kinds of crazy things, so that was a bit disappointing. Is it really too much to ask that even though the cabin usually sleeps six, and since we paid for two extra mattresses, shouldn't we get two extra bottles of water and two extra towels too? Seriously?!

Also, people let me tell was COLD there! Coming from someone who lives in constant 90-100+ heat with very little AC action, it was a shock to our system. There was no AC/heat in our cabins of course, but we were unprepared for sleeping and being out in the rainy 50-60 degree temps! Thankfully, we had our sarongs to wrap around us. Fortunately, as always when we get together, there is a swap table and I was able to get the girls a pair of jeans and a couple of long sleeved shirts! I have to say, it was a nice change though, and we just tried to enjoy it, but let's just say there was no swimming for us! :)

Every year they try to give the kids a chance to improve upon their public speaking skills and this year was no different. The kids were given an assignment to write a paper, prepare a speech about their choice of safari animal, and complete two projects dealing with their animal. My kids had a lot of fun with this project and I was thankful for the "push" to get me out of my rut. Anyone else like me and sometimes tends to put off doing some fun projects?

The kids had an absolute blast! The students performed a mini musical and participated in an Amazing Race which was so much fun, but glaringly showed me that I am getting older. (lol) Several families took out time to go through the actual Safari, which made me a little nervous because things are not always the safest over here! ( Mom, ignore that last sentence!) I was cautioned to pass on the tiger/wild animal petting zoo, but those who did it all survived :), we just didn't have time!!

When Friday rolled around we had to have our luggage loaded at 5am to take the 6am bus to the airport, which was three hours away in "Starbucks", even though our flight didn't leave until 4:30pm! Talk about a long day! When the Coordinator and the volunteers arrived to prepare for us it took them 18 hours and 7 hours respectively to get to to the Safari from the airport!! Can you believe that? Apparently the President of Macchiato was coming through and they closed all of the roads to let him pass, and since traffic is always a huge mess here, it made it even worse! So that is why we left so early, you just never know what you will experience and we had to leave plenty of time because some people flew out around noon.

We are so grateful for this opportunity and that our company sees the value in giving us encouragement and support. Thanks again for all of you who give to support this great organization. Helping families thrive helps all of us to be able to accomplish the bigger "task" at hand!

Enjoy the slide show!

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1 comment:

joan said...

LOVED the slide-show!!!!!!!!