One Kid Out of School... Three Weeks to Go...

When we returned from the temple last week, Archie told us he didn’t steal a mamba while we were gone to the temple, even though he was tempted. 

He didn’t steal any because he remembered the scripture study question we’d asked “what should I do if I’m tempted to lie, cheat or steal?” And his answers.

Woo was called and set apart as Branch President last week. Most of the stake presidency was there and we thought they were going to do some training (except with the primary).

But when the Stake President announced that the primary was invited to stay, Linus gave an audible groan of disappointment. He’d planned our lesson and had been looking forward to it. When I explained this the Stake President suddenly decided that after the settings apart, we’d all listen to Linus’ lesson.

Linus had a slow start, where Woo and I exchanged glances… “What is he going to do???” But he pulled out a wonderful lesson to the enjoyment of all. I think it might’ve been especially perfect for the two nonmember visitors we had too.

Woo did a lot of jumping through hoops this week to get a health number in order to be vaccinated. They ended up giving him a temporary number, which was (so far) good enough to make him an appointment.

I was eligible for an appointment weeks ago, but was put on hold until this week when I was assigned a date in July.

Because of this Woo tried signing up in a nearby, slightly bigger city and successfully got an appointment for next week.

Woo changed out of his t-shirt (donning a white shirt and tie), but kept on his shorts to issue new callings to Ruby and Linus.

Ruby’s first words were, “You look ridiculous!”

But she accepted the calling (branch social media specialist).

Linus had no comment about Woo’s outfit, but he’s super excited about his new calling (branch music leader).

Thursday evening we got the news that the metro Lisbon area would be closing (no entering or leaving) from Friday afternoon to Monday morning.

The temple only has baptism appointments available Friday evening and Saturday. If we had scheduled a week later, we wouldn’t have been able to go.

The little surge in Lisbon has also stalled the expected announcement that American tourists would be allowed into the country this summer.

Archie came home with a cardboard iPhone and excitedly told me that he and Zhe had a scheduled call at 6PM. He stuck to me very closely for about 15 minutes, afraid he would miss it, until I told him he still had two hours.

At 5:59PM I mentioned that he had a minute. Archie went into the kitchen with his phone, talking to Zhe for about 30 seconds before he decided it wasn’t quite 6PM yet. I alerted him again at 6:01PM when he had another quick call in the kitchen and returned looking very proud.

This was Herbie’s last week of school. He was super excited for his class party on Monday: games, bbq, canoeing…

He came home with his grouchy face on. He’d had a horrible time.

There was an altercation when the 5th graders stormed the Futbal Humano field that was reserved for the ninth graders (Linus would say differently), Herbie only was allowed 1 hamburger, and had to drink water because iced tea and Pepsi were the only other options.

While waiting in line for a paddle board, someone else said they were next in line, and when they rock, paper, scissored for it and Herbie won, they took it anyway. He had to use an old leaky canoe that hurt his back. He got yelled at for going the wrong way over a wave while trying to retrieve his surf boot that had fallen out of the canoe, and so on…

There is another, all-night party put on by one of his classmates, but Herbie has NO interest. Even when someone suggested he didn’t have to stay all night, but could go home at 2 or 3 AM, he thought that was ridiculous.

He had a few other last week of middle school adventures, but I’ll let him write them.

Last week I did missionary work. This week I was supposed to get ready for summer. We have a printer now! Tons of great books are out of print or no longer under copyright, and can be printed for free!

The kids and I feel as if a long drought is over… they can have a new book in English at anytime now! (Yes, we have iPads, but there’re a whole host of problems there I don’t want to get into.)

I printed a fun book for everyone right off the bat, which they all started reading in their free time, then worked on more educational books for required reading during the summer.

Also, I came up with a summer plan.

Moses was not looking forward to summer. (To be honest, I was feeling it was going to be pretty blah too.) But now that I’ve posted the summer plan on the wall and printed him a book or two, he’s super excited.

He is extremely intrigued by the two “Surprise!” spots. (Yes, I do have a plan, I just couldn’t write them without giving the whole game away.) He keeps asking me about them and trying to guess… there’s nothing Moses loves more than a surprise and a mystery.

He’s next excited about the Settlers tournament, which he feels pretty confident he’ll get second to Woo.

He and Archie want to know why I didn’t write down the beach or pinhal, but those kinds of things are saved for spontaneous outings when the mood hits us.

Summer has always taken more planning here than in Huntsville (I think because we live in an apartment?), but since Covid it really has to be done to keep up morale. There has to be something on the menu to look forward to.

Ruby has one more week of school, but there are two kids who missed Friday who are likely positive. There’s a good possibility she’ll not be going next week. Her whole class is scheduled for a test next week if they are.

She’s still serious about studying for her final exam. She has plans to pick up next year’s books at the school library to study over the summer. We’re also going to start preparing her for the ACT, and hopefully all will go well????

When I mentioned we could print sheet music for her over the summer too, she jumped up and said, “Yay!”

Ruby does not have a summer job, but she does have a couple callings and frequent opportunities to speak and teach, sometimes even in the Stake. I’ve thought of maybe having her ask at the library if they need any volunteers, but they seem overstaffed already. The place is always dead. We’ll see.

I bought a package of plastic medals and a package of larger trophies, back when I thought I might attempt a birthday party for Penelope’s seventh birthday.

That never happened, so I let Archie and Nellpea divide up the awards and distribute them among their classes.

Penelope had big plans to hold a few races at recess to award the trophies, but she didn’t have afternoon recess that first day (early out day), and the next day it rained.

When she left for school under clouds and a drizzle on the third day, she was sad.

“I’ve already waited two WHOLE days!”

But the clouds cleared and the sun came out right at recess time and she was able to hold her races.

And that’s our week! I hope yours was great!