The Portuguese Summer Heat has set in. Projected temperatures are frightening when considering we have a few fans and nothing more to keep us cool. Even the little kiddy pool out back with it's mysteriously developed hole offers no hope of reprieve from the heat. One of the advantages to such heat is that when I hang out a load of wash, by the time I'm done with the last article of clothing, the first one I hung out is nearly dry! Which means I can get lots of clothes done in record time. I just sweat like a dog while doing it!
4th of July was fairly uneventful here. We didn't even see a firework, or smell the delicious aroma of grilled hamburgers and BBQ. But we did enjoy watermelon....
..and we tossed around the football.
This morning, in between going out to hang out laundry and blogging, I'm being a very mean mother. Summer school is in full force.
When we discuss what we do in the summer with our friends here, I am always met with frowns and disbelief. Other parents cannot believe I 'make' my kids do school work in the summer! After all, 'children are not machines', we've been told.
However, much to my shame and embarrassment, my 11 year old could not accurately tell how many stars were on the American flag when asked by a Portuguese man at church on Sunday. This man knew the correct answer and she did not. He also knew what the 13 stripes represented...and again...she did not.
Now, to her credit, she can correctly conjugate just about any Portuguese verb thrown at her and she fills me in on the history behind each of the 2,000 Portuguese holidays when I wonder why the stores are closed again for the third time in a week. This was one of the concerns when we prayed about whether to allow them to attend a Portuguese school, or continue to homeschool. The decision was made to go to school and to supplement during the summer with American history, English and any other necessary American teachings that they lacked. They actually enjoy it....other parents don't believe me though.
We've been told by another American missionary family who raised their children here and sent them to the schools that one day one of their children (teenager) came to them and asked, "Dad... now is Denver a city or a state?"
Don't laugh...hearing something like this hurts a parents heart. It's one of the struggles families raising children in a foreign country experience. This family shared this story with us as a way to encourage us. They told us to not be surprised when something like this happens cause it will happen. Well...I had my day on Sunday when Brooklyn could not tell or even guess how many stars were on the American flag....on our day of Independence no less......
So...with this all said...we keep on....We teach when we see opportunities. We encourage when they get frustrated. We smile and laugh when we don't know what else to do.......
So goes the Life of a Missionary Wife.