Sunday, August 24, 2014

This Summer’s Last Hurrah

We have enjoyed an unusually long break from school with the move, but events of the week reminded us that summer’s lazy long days are nearly done and soon it will be time to get back into the regular routines of school and work. We sent the season out with celebratory outings.

On Monday, Hallie helped Candace, a member of our ward, pack up her kitchen in preparation for her family’s move out of state. Like Belle Isle, while there are some families that have stayed in the area for years, many younger families spend a couple of years in the ward before jobs or other circumstances draw them away. A few families such as our own have moved in this summer, and several have left, so things should be stable again for the rest of the year. 

Here’s Eliza making progress as an emerging reader. Dr. Seuss is always an inspiration.

On Tuesday, Mike joined the missionaries as they taught an investigator family. At home, Hallie taught Landon how to tie his shoes using a method she found online for teaching efficient life skills.

Wednesday found us at the Camarillo Airport. We went with Grandma and Grandpa O. and Alie to the Waypoint Cafe. The airplanes parked and getting ready to taxi out to the hangers or runways fascinated the kids.

Thursday started early for Hallie and Eliza. Having found out from the school district that Eliza is missing an immunization booster shot, Hallie took her to the clinic. They had to wait a long time even though they were fourth in line. Eliza chose to sit in her own chair and did not even flinch when the shot happened. Everyone was impressed with her big girl attitude and Barbie band-aid. The two of them then ran to Costco, and the school to get everything in order for Wednesday.

On Friday morning, Landon’s new elementary school, Las Posas, had a new family orientation meeting. We had our eyes opened wide to the stark differences between schools in Pleasant Valley and those in Grosse Pointe. Las Posas is not Defer, and we’re going to have to let that sink in for a bit. Not to completely knock the school or district, which both seem great, but we recognized that we had better facilities and resources at the kids’ former schools. In the afternoon, we went back to see Landon’s classroom assignment. His new teacher is Ms. Bendinelli, and he has 26 students in his class. That’s a far cry from the 15 in his kindergarten class, but his teacher receives good marks.

In between our jaunts over to Las Posas, the kids had a Primary activity at church, and end-of-summer Splash Party. They played a bunch of different water sports and got thoroughly wet. The grown-ups got a chance to get to know the other moms and get their opinions about what to do about school in order to support and extend the kids’ learning.

On Saturday, Hallie attended a baby shower for an expecting mom in the ward, and then we headed out for a family fun day to mark the last Saturday before the new school year.

We started off with some bike riding out front.
Ridiculous. As our friend Monika wrote, these kids have "worn all your panic out."
 We then headed out to Chuck E. Cheese's.

Then we went to Seaward Fish ‘n’ Chips for some lunch before going for a short stroll along the beach. We could not have timed our arrival better: We found a parking spot close to the restaurant (in the shade no less), and got to the restaurant to find an open table inside. Shortly after we received our order, everyone else seemed to decide they wanted lunch too.

Checking out one of the many by-the-wind sailors that had washed up on shore 

By the time we got home, the Wings Over Camarillo airshow was well under way. We saw a giant orange flying wing and several vintage aircraft buzz right overhead. What a sight! Talk about loud, though.
(Obviously it's better in person.)

Here's some insight into how the acrobats do their work:

We have spent the last few weeks watching a show on Netflix called Cedar Cove. One of the story lines has to do with a character who is considering placing her baby for adoption. Another character, who was adopted himself, gave some great insights about adoption from the perspective of an adopted child: He tells the expectant mother that he has heard that we pick out parents before we are born and he likes to think that he picked out one woman to carry him and another to raise him.

Sunday brought new callings at church for the parents. Hallie was sustained as the 2nd counselor in Primary, and Mike was sustained as the ward mission leader. Both of us are working in familiar territory. Now it's off to the races, once again! 


Kim said...

Any other state's public school system leaves California in the dark. I would think though that Camarillo would have great schools.

Michael Owens said...

@Kim, yeah. We're pretty sure the Camarillo schools will be great, but we realize that our school system back in Michigan was amazing, so we're coming to grips with the relative loss.