Friday, November 20, 2020

Semester One Complete

 Today I picked Arlington up from college.  First semester classes are complete and because of the ongoing Coronavirus, her dorm had to be completely emptied so the school can deep clean over the holidays.  She will be moving to a new dorm next semester anyway (a lot more kids are coming back to campus, so everyone is moving) so no choice but to grab the entire amount of stuff she has accumulated and bring it home.

I went alone to pick her up because there was no way to fit it any other way.  Mat was working, so I volunteered.  It went rather quick, and now she is home and settled in.  She has some finals over the next few weeks and then is off until her January class begins (remotely).  She doesn't return to campus until February first.  

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

Returning Home

 Today - for the first time in 3 years and 3 months I am standing in our home.  Our renters have finally moved out and the house is now ours.  This coming year the house will go through a huge transformation, but for now I just relish in the fact that it is now back in our posession.  Such a relief.

Sunday, November 1, 2020

Celebrating 23 years of Marriage

 Today Mat and I celebrate being married for 23 years.  23 years of moving to many places, traveling, kids, animals, houses....endless memories together.  We started dating when we were 15/16 years old in 1991 and next year will celebrate 30 years of being together.  Twice as long as we weren't.  Hard to believe.

We did go out to a nice dinner tonight to celebrate.  Delicious steak and dessert to wrap up a day that I will always treasure.  

Friday, October 30, 2020

First Snow

 The first snow of the year is always a favorite of mine.  I don't love snow and the chores that it brings now that we are back in Northeastern America.  But it sure is pretty.  We are still in our rental property (but our renters are leaving our permanent house soon so stay tuned!), so we didn't have to clear it.  That did make it all the nicer

Thursday, October 8, 2020

German Doodling

 Finley is the one who championed the German language while we were away.  She seemed to take to it like a fisht to water, and really became rather fluent in the language.  She was reading novels in German before we left, and speaking to her friends almost exclusively in the language that they all shared (besides English).  She even took the IGCSE exam in German - something reserved for kids 2 years older than she is - so that she could test out of language courses for American high school.  She scored an A on the exam and we couldn't be more proud.

It was a delight to me when I was cleaning her room and found her math doodles.  She wrote a message in German as she did her homework - just out of habit.  I do hope that some how she can hold onto the language - even in part.

It says: I hate math because it's boring but I like math because the homework is not that big

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Visiting The College Girl

 Today we had a chance to visit Arlington on her campus.  We couldn't go into her room, but did take her some things and then took her to have some lunch.  She showed us around the campus.  It was nice because Mat didn't get to come in August when we dropped her off.  We had a lovely afternoon and it was nice to see her.

Pretty chruch

This is Arlington's dining Hall

School of Music - huge building

Where Arlington catches the bus for her off campus class

She has one in person class on campus and this si where they put them

Basketball Stadium

Hockey Stadium

This is where Arlington's dorm is located

Thursday, September 17, 2020

A Very Different School Start

 It is the start of a new school year for Finley and Cainan.  Being back in the United States where the virus continues to rage means not returning to school normally.  After a lot of debate in our district, the year started two weeks later than normally and in a hybrid form.  Finley and Cainan will be home Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday doing school virtually from their bedrooms.  And Thursday and Friday they will be in school.  Full masks on, 6 feet apart, and very little social life for these two lie ahead.

So difficult this will be for these two who are returning to a school they have been gone for 3 years.  Kids are different now.  It is like starting over.  I feel for them.  Their anxiety is high.  I know they will adjust - they always do.

On top of all of that, we are still in our temporary housing, so we are still unsettled.

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Return to Karate

 While we were in Switzerland, Cainan was able to continue Karate, which we were grateful for.  Even though the class was taught all in German, he really enjoyed it and kept his skills up.  We were so excited when we returned to Littleton and were able to jump back into the Karate Dojo where he was in class before.  We loved the Sensei there and Cainan was anxious to keep going, so tonight was his first class.  

Picking up where we left off - one more step to resettling

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Old Friends

 One of the best things about being able to move back to Littleton and back to the house we adore is the friends I had made there.  Littleton is the place I have lived the longest (besides my childhood home).  6 years of great friends for us and the kids that meant a great deal to me.  I was so worried that when Mat decided it was time to look for a new job it would take us somewhere new.  It always does.  But this time, I got my wish to return to a beloved house and neighborhood that held so many wonderful memories.

We are in the middle of a pandemic, so there is no way to safely visit like we used to - my friends and I.  We loved getting together at least once a month and going out to a favorite restaurant and chatting for hours on end.  However - beautiful weather, a roaring firepit, and a great way to space out safely made it possible for me to see them after longing to see them all this time away.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Arlington goes to College

 We have moved Arlington to college.  I cannot believe I am writing those words.  Our eldest daughter has graduated from high school a year early with 16 college credits in her back pocket and is now settled into the University of Massachusetts.  Mat is still in San Francisco with his new job, so my parents graciously came to help us move her into college.

What is it like to move a kid to college during a pandemic?  Interesting.  Frustrating.  Her school has decided that only 1000 students will be on campus -anyone who had an in person class.  Arlington only had one - her farm class- so off to college she went.  She is in a 3 bedroom suite with just she and her roomate.  They have a livingroom and a full bathroom just for the two of them.  It is pretty nice for a freshmen.  Going to be hard to go back to a regular dorm room once the pandemic passes, that is for sure.

I wasn't sure how this was going to go.  Arlington is only 17.  She is a year younger than many of the other freshmen.  But I think she is ready.  She was so excited to start her pre-vet classes.  I am happy that she is only 1 1/2 hours away in case we need to grab her quickly or want to go and visit (in non-pandemic times).

My dad and I were the ones to move her in.  Arlington had to have a Covid test before she could go to the dorms (and will be tested twice a week this whole semester).  Only two people could help the student move in.  We were masked the whole time.  But it went smoothly.  We got her all squared away and everything unpacked before we had to leave.

I think she is going to love it.  Even in this weird time with so little people on campus, and very few dining halls open (or buildings in general), it is a start of a new chapter for her.  Maybe this slower start is just what she needs to get her feet wet before the 21,000 other UMass students return.

My parents bought Arlington her computer for college

My sister in law had a sign made with Arlington on it - love it

Arlington had to have coveralls and much boots for her one in person class

packed and ready to go!  

UMass set up a "tent city" for kids on campus that might have Covid.  This was put in place when all 22,000 were coming back

Arlington all set in her room!  The kids have single rooms but are in these suites with a "roommate".  So there is another girl in her suite, but that girl also has her own room

There are only two girls assigned to the 3 room suite - so the girls decided to make this room their "pantry"
They have their own bathroom - it is quite large

A big living room.  This suite is typically for 4 kids.  So with only two of them - it is quite the apartment.  The furniture was there.  We brought the tV

We weren't able to walk around CAmpus, but it is huge.  And beautiful.  I hope to be able to see it once the pandemic is over

I made her send me a picture of her first day of classes.  All but one of her classes is remote this entire semester, so this will be her classroom until Thanksgiving