Certain parties were concerned that we'd fallen off the face of the earth. We're still here, we're just not doing anything blogworthy. The professor is teaching his five courses, wrote his article, is polishing up a book review today, is still in the middle of creating the online course (he had to ask them for an extension on that, but said they were very "hakuna matata" about it) and is only fraying enough to take some fresh students down a notch or two.
In addition we're planning our upcoming study abroad this summer. We've shortened it to just one term and are going to spend July in Berlin and August in Tuebingen (a university town south of Stuttgart). We're being uncharacteristically organized and we've already calendared most of it, with side trips to London, Dresden, Potsdam, Eisenach, Nuremburg and Heidelberg so far [I'm open for suggestions on things to do and see in any of these, hint hint]. I've checked out a dozen or more travel books from the library and have had my nose in those or on the interwebs looking for lodging and events we might want to see. Then I make the professor take over with the deutsch part.
It's getting exciting since Rob now meets with the students each week to fill out paperwork and orient them. Yesterday I threw together a power point presentation for his Culture Shock 101 unit: Loving and Understanding our Tscherman Friends. This is when you really get to bond with your students over the differences in temperature, humidity, scale, pillows, waiters, grocery stores and toilets.
Here are a couple of other things we've been up to:
On Presidents' Day we went to Farm Country at Thanksgiving Point. The kids played in this little farm-to-harvest display three times longer than I thought they would. They just kept planting on treest and in the garden and then harvesting them onto the conveyor belt to go to market.
Woo! Glad to know the reflectors work! Here Sebastian is planting an orchard.
I organized some drawers. As promised, we have before and after pictures to shame the owners. I should put up a list a la Louise Plummer for the before (crayons and snap circuits and Spock ears, oh my!) but I'm not going to do it.
Rob and Joss made this guy out in the front yard and he was Joss's favorite family member for the few weeks he lasted. Now he's a carrot sitting on a brown lawn, but he led a good life.I took this video to show what a little singer Joss is right now, but after reviewing it, the most interesting thing we caught is this bunch of sounds that he begins every sentence with: "Masickusgonahsquebldybmp" or something like it. It reminds me of those characters you used to get in front of each line on incompatible emails. Rob and I are waiting for them to morph into something intelligible or go away, but when we imitate them, he just gets really confused.