December Miscellaneous

No class the last two weeks! I’ve been doing approximately everything except the things I planned to do over my winter break. It’s been really wonderful. Although it has made me wish we had internet at home. It’s very obnoxious to have to go sit on a random couch in a loud hallway to work (the university library seems to try really hard to make it not convenient to work there).

Today’s post is just going to be a smattering of things that happened this past week.

First, Wednesday was the day to end all days. We’re not going to top this one. On the university campus, there is a “Schenkschrank” – a giveaway closet. You can leave things or take things. It’s usually just German books and clothes, but we always check it out. Yesterday, there was a huge box that looked like it had a food processor in it. I called Will to pick it up straight away.

It wasn’t just a food processor. It was a food processor with like 8 different blades and a blender attachment and a juicer attachment and it was dirty but in super good shape. And it came with the manual, which had an English section. AND underneath all of this was a gorgeous 10 setting china tea set. Someone just put all that in a box and gave it away! (After it apparently sat in a storage area for 7 years or something)

On the other hand, I had a few hopes and plans dashed. I’m about to lose my mind reading German books to Herbert. I just can’t do it any more. I miss English books. I found out that the Berlin library system is massive and has TONS of English books (the Eberswalde library has virtually none and we are unable to request from other libraries). I got so excited until I read that you have to have a Berlin address to check any out (we’re a half hour train ride from Berlin). So that was heartbreaking. I still plan to take Herbert there over his winter break, just to read different things.

I also got an email saying the entire university is going to be locked from Christmas Eve until the New Year. When combined with library closures, 7 of the days of Herbert’s winter break, I will have zero internet access as well as nowhere indoors to take Herbert to play.

Yesterday we learned Herbert’s best friends are getting moved up to the next age group. He’s going to be heartbroken. He knows 3 letters – H, L, and T. L and T are the letters his friends’ names start with. And just within the past couple weeks has he gotten all the names and cubby positions of his classmates memorized.

Insurance is being obnoxious. We’ll be able to get it and it’s fine, but it’s just taking forever. Poor communication. They had to send me a temporary password in the mail. But it’s all going to work out and be fine.

I came to the realization that if we want Herbert to be able to read and write English at grade level, we will have to teach him ourselves. Obviously it’ll be awhile until we start teaching him to read, but I’ve been researching curriculums and I found the perfect one. I really want to get my hands on the curriculum and some phonics readers and analyze them. Instead I’m just watching videos about it. I’m really excited.

Overall things are going well. We’re happy it’s the solstice. We’ve been talking about how dark it is and how humans shouldn’t live this far north. But this morning we realized, for both of us, our ancestry is partially from this latitude and 50% from north of this latitude.

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