Category: Uncategorized

Learning Writing through Chinese Calligraphy

Beginning February of this year, I finally signed the kids up to a Chinese calligraphy class.

Best extra-curriculer class we took this semester, other than music.

I’d wanted the kids to do Chinese calligraphy for a long time.   Three years ago, I visited a Montessori preschool and was told that they don’t ask the children to write, but instead teach characters through calligraphy and learning the evolution of characters.   We know that many kids nowadays write too early.  You can see it in their pencil grip.  And especially with Chinese, where they traditionally do repetitive writing, it’s not good for their hands.

Calligraphy is a good alternative if the children aren’t ready to hold a small pencil.

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Science: Volcanos 火山爆發

After weeks of slacking off in science due to move, I finally did a presentation today on volcanos.  It’s actually because our Story of the World chapter had an activity on volcanos and I signed up for it.  We’re trying a new thing in our co-op where we each sign up to host and present a history chapter so it’s not so hard on the two members who had been hosting most of the time.  Thankfully it nicely segwayed into layers of the earth and volcanos in science, planned presentations months ago before I veered off course.

Before we started on volcanos, first we had to continue from our First Great Lesson story about how the earth was created.   (We’d already done a few presentations on the states of matters but I also skipped a few presentations in the Creation of the Earth section of my album.)

First we read a picture book on the layers of the earth.  It’s a story about two animals who decided to dig their way to the other side of the earth.  From the picture book we learned some layers of the earth terms. (more…)

What should I do with my life?

CDsIt took me three days.  But I have finally wrangled my CDs and DVDs into some organization order.  Each disk and cover was painstakingly taken out of its case, sorted, then equally painstakingly put into a sleeve. The collection now takes up a fifth of the original space.

This, along with the myriad of other home organization I’ve been undertaking the last month makes me inordinately happy.  I have to stop myself from going on and on about it with my friends.  It’s kind of like that first baby tooth or first step, or first chocolate face.  So boring to other people but it puts some really good marbles into the “happy happy joy joy” jar.

I just finished reading Po Bronson’s What Should I Do With My Life this week.  It’s a bunch of stories of people who asked themselves this question.  It’s really a book about people being discontented, and taking that plunge to make some changes.  Sometimes they fall into it, sometimes it’s a conscious choice, and still sometimes it takes try after try to get it right.  I’ve been trying to figure out what the message is; or what can you do to figure out what to do with your life.  I think ultimately it’s about living a life that fills your soul; living a life that conforms to your ideals and beliefs.

It may sound frivolous, but taking the time to organize my CD media does fill my soul.  There is a need in me to have an organized life and I’m finally getting that done now that I’m an SAHM.  I used to run around like a wanna-be superwoman.  But juggling a full time job, night school, volunteering at preschool 10-20 hours a week, didn’t leave room for cooked meals or clean house.  I thought the night school and volunteering made me happy.  To a certain extent they did.  Schooling challenged my brain after years of doing the same thing at work.  And volunteering provided some practice into the new job field I want to go to.

The home and children suffered though.  Being a SAHM the last half year has slowed down the pace.  So many people have told me that I’m more relaxed now.  I guess I was running around like a headless chicken, putting out one little fire after another, rather than doing some big management of said forest.

Sometimes I am still not sure if I made the right choice, if what I’m doing day to day is what I want to do with my life.  But there are many more moments now of happiness in a job well done: cooking dinner every day, organizing all those CDs, rearranging the kitchen drawers, labeling all the spices.  They’re so mundane and doesn’t sound on level with managing email servers or people.  Hence I keep feeling the need to figure out and explain why I’m so happy getting these done.  After reading Bronson’s book, I think I know why.  In my head, I do have an image of what my home life should be like, of what a wife and a mother ought to be doing.  And though I’m a feminist, its the traditional home wifey things like cooking, gardening, sewing, etc, that I think ought to be done if you keep home.  (Yes I know, being feminist doesn’t exclude this but typically the term does not conjure a Martha Stewart image.)

On top of all that, it goes back to my belief of the need to live a balanced life.  I feel that I’m living a balanced life when my house, in addition to my career, is in order.  To be able to not just make money, but to also enjoy the things that money cannot buy.   It is this sense of living that balanced life, the life where I’m enjoying what I do rather than hurried, I think that’s what fills me with contentment; living the way I envisioned and want to live.

If my kids were to ask me the “What should I do with my life” question, I think this is what I would tell them.  To be introspective and understand what it is one needs, to know the things that fills you with little joys daily.  The joys that money cannot buy.

A First Post

Every blog has to have that first post which says nothing.

It took me an hour to buy the domain just in case I want to use it a year down the line.  And now I have no idea what it was that propelled me to want to start yet another blog.