Before day 2 goes into hyper-speed, I wanted to check in. To give you an idea of how busy we are, I have yet to take another photo.
M got in Friday evening and went almost straight to bed. Saturday everyone was up by 7:30 or 8 and I had printed out a routine in English and Russian and posted it. She read it and seemed relieved to see our expectations clearly stated.
In short: up by 9, breakfast by 9:30,
clean self and house (this includes getting dressed for the day; choose a job from that day's job list),
Busy brain activity -- English lessons, math work, educational board games, etc. (30 minutes)
Then "busy body" play the rest of the morning.
Lunch at noon,
then more "busy body",
after noon quiet body activity (reading, crafts, etc),
6-7PM dinner (with each kid assigned a night for helping cook and everyone else helps set and clear table),
after dinner: tidy house or family walk etc,
little kid shower and bed (8-9),
everyone else to bed (before midnight).
Yesterday after breakfast and dressed and some light chores, Katie worked on a book of math facts, Jorge worked on some paper folding origami (good precision, reading, spatial planning, etc and prepares him for geometry. Also, it was Star Wars origami so there are 130 Yoda finger puppets in the house), M sat at the computer for 45 minutes of LiveMocha language work, and August played with a dry erase board. Then the three regulars ran outside to play while M continued her English lessons.
By 10 we started hearing the dreaded "it's boring just playing in the yard" which is just completely ridiculous. These kids are great at self-entertainment usually. But I wanted to run some errands anyhow so off we went.
We threw on shoes and walked to the village (less than a mile of shady residential streets) and spent time at the library, got Jorge's haircut, went into the grocery for some chips and nuts and sandwiches and baby carrots and SunnyD and coke and biscotti, then walked a block south to the lake/park for our spontaneous picnic lunch (12:45) and then stopped for Italian Ice being sold from a push cart and then walked the rest of the way to the playground for an hour and then walked allllll the way home and turned on the sprinkler for the 3 kids while M read upstairs. I hung up and tested out the hammock with my book and was eventually joined by August, then Katie, then Rob, then Jorge, and finally I invited M down with her book. The hammock can hold up to 600 pounds but that's a lot of feet and legs--we typically only had 3 in at a time.
Dinner rolled around and I realized that another meal of deli meat on bread was not appealing to anyone and hotdogs is hardly an improvement. M and I went to the store and got a rotisserie chicken, some deli pasta salads, some fruit and corn-on-the-cob, and lots of other things that earned a "yes." Food!
Home, cooking, Rob left for the night (he has a bike race tomorrow and was sleeping at his mom's house which was closer to the starting point for a much better and longer night of sleep than anyone gets here), dinner, showers, and 3 littles tucked into bed at 8:15. Curled up with M on the couch and did a dueling-laptops chat for 2-3 hours between watching youtube clips of Bieber and Maksim and browsing image files for haircuts. Batteries on laptops and Julie were done at 11:30 so we headed to bed.
And....now it's 8 am Sunday. Yesterday looks absolutely relaxed compared to today's to-do list. Go!