God sometimes gives us unexpected gifts. Our gift has been a grandson who enlivens our lives and makes retirement very different than the one we anticipated. He is a special joy. And that's "Casey." In 2006 we fulfilled our dream of living in Italy for a year. It was every bit as wonderful as anticipated. This blog begins in 2005 as we prepared for that experience. Since then we have explored many places together. That's the "Travel." And finally, I am a person of opinions--spiritually, politically, on just about anything and that's the "Other Stuff." Welcome to my blog.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Vines and Scuola

Two big events this week. Can't decide which to write about. So, guess it'll be both. OK?

First-------
Freedom is spelled S-C-U-O-L-A: (Ken and I now have a life of our own for a few hours Monday through Friday--hallelujah!)

The first full week is behind us so let's all give a big sigh of relief because:
No tears
No not wanting to go in the morning
No pleas to go "home"
No "I can'ts"
No giving up.

Instead:
He has friends--male and female. In fact, there seem to be some little girls competing for his attentions. He has exchanged phone numbers with Tomasso.

He had a great time at Niccolo's birthday party which also gave him a chance to connect with the other kids in a normal kid way--not at school. We could tell the difference in his relationships the next day at school--he was now one of "them."

He loves lunch. A sample day: pesto pasta, some kind of wonderful chicken, salad and fruit dessert. He describes these feasts in great detail--ingredients, color, taste. All of this is freshly made shortly before it is served. Quite different from the food mills in San Diego.

He had to sit out a recess because he and two (girl) friends--Nubia and Gabriela-- were throwing bread at each other--a sign that he belongs. Of course, we had to be very incensed by this and let him know in very certain terms that it is NOT to happen again. He dutifully said that it won't.

He takes karate after school two days a week. One of his instructors is a 4 times world champion and Olympian. The other was a national champion. Since Casey had karate in San Diego, they have been pretty impressed with his skills and put him in one of the more advanced groups.

He goes from 8:30 to 4:30 and has homework most nights--but seems OK with this.

His Italian is coming along quite rapidly. He wrote his first paragraph in Italian by the end of the week.

He does not like:
That Maestra Anna Maria hollers a lot. (Maybe I will offer a workshop on classroom management.)

Having PE only one day a week and it is inside a room about the size of a tennis court.

He doesn't have a tutor yet so nothing is in English--except the English class where they are learning colors. This will be a great opportunity to see the benefits and results of total immersion.

There is a major difference in curriculum when compared to home and I am not yet sure what that will mean. It seems they spend hours a day on any one of several subjects rather than covering them all. According to him they spent two days doing nothing but math--but I think that is not quite true. When I checked his notebook, it seemed he did do some Italian language reading and writing each day. His science and English notebooks still look like Mother Hubbard's cupboard.

Basically, things are looking good and we are encouraged. As I have noted before, God is good and prayers are answered.

Secondly........
Well--it is now late and I do need to watch the news to see what is happening at home. On our TV service--SKY--the only United States news we get is FOX! Now, I know that some of our friends watch this religiously, but, I am also sure you are not surprised to know that we avoid it religiously. But--desperate people do desperate things so we watch FOX and then CNN, Sky News from Britain, BBC and CNBC Europe for world coverage.

All this means that Secondly... won't happen until domani. It'll be fun to share with you what living in a vineyard during the grape harvest is like. And why Alessandro says this year's wines may well be "the wines of the century" --stay tuned.




3 comments:

soultravelers3 said...

Jane I am enjoying your blog and so glad to hear how well Casey is doing in school and how happy you all are!

Soultravelers3 ;)

Ring Stafford said...

Hi Jane and Ken and Casey! My comment on the last entry never made it, so let me repeat how stoked I was to see Casey looking so stylish and confident on his first day of school. It does my heart good to hear how well things are going - you were very wise in your preparations.

Hey Casey - how about writing us your own blog entry about your first week of school? I can't wait to hear about the birthday party and all of your new friends!!!

A presto,

Ring in North Carolina

Ring Stafford said...

Hi Jane and Ken and Casey! My comment on the last entry never made it, so let me repeat how stoked I was to see Casey looking so stylish and confident on his first day of school. It does my heart good to hear how well things are going - you were very wise in your preparations.

Hey Casey - how about writing us your own blog entry about your first week of school? I can't wait to hear about the birthday party and all of your new friends!!!

A presto,

Ring in North Carolina