Day 9: Home Schooling & and the Crazy Garbage Cleaning Boxer

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Day 9 – yikes can’t believe we are at day 9 already.  If you were on a two week vacation you’d already be slipping back into re-entry mode probably – at least that’s how it seems to work with us when we travel.  We continue to work with the kids on their schoolwork.  We’ve found using Kahn Academy also helps as the boys get to watch videos and take tests in their subject area then we work with them on the homework.  Gavin suprise Skype called his fifth grade class last Friday and he got to video-link/chat/talk with his class friends.  They too got to ask questions and get interesting Gavin-ized answers.  It’s amazing how using a simple tool like Skype though can bring a far away place into a classroom and bring interest into where we are, what we are doing and what it’s like.  Most people from the US will ever really come this far – especially with their kiddos – so hopefully our experience can help others see that it’s ok and fun to do.  Overall teaching the kids is turning out to be really good.  The other day we went and did Tide Pool exploration at the beach – today they had to write a paper about tide-pools and what it would be like to live in one.  Gavin’s turned into a tide-pool meets earthquake story and hayden’s was very brief – so we gave Hayden a research paper on what happened in the 1960 earthquake here (the largest earthquake recorded ever – anywhere) and what geology aspects make this area so prone to earthquakes.

The weather has been a bit crummy for the beach (cold/cloudy) but we are making the most of it.  Our swimming pool is great – but it’s extremely cold so no one has been in except the boys.  When the sun comes out we are like cats on a sofa – laying in the sun and relaxing/reading/laughing and hanging out.  Last night I BBQ’d chicken on the outdoor grill.  I had to take a whole chicken, cut it up, marinade it then cook it on ‘Carbon’ – which is basically pre-burned wood that burns down to coals for your fire.  But boy was it good – it’s like cooking over a Boy Scout fire – open flame and all.  We’ve even used some of our scout skills to get it going…   It took 1.5 hours to cook, but it was well worth it.  We have fresh herbs in our garden so you just go and cut what you want.  Things like tomatoes, lemons, etc. are excellent here – buy local and you’re in for a real treat.




Home Schooling in Las Cruces



Tide Pool Home School

Tide Pool Home School

Crazy Boxer    So we went to this park yesterday and there’s this boxer walking around.  Of course I need to take a couple of pictures for my parents who have ‘show quality’ boxers.  Note that this boxer is not a show quality – maybe pet quality – but is most definitely “street quality” – in that she’s a rough/tough eating machine.  I sat in awe as I watched her patiently sit and wait for someone to throw something into this big garbage can (see picture).  Then she went over to the garbage – stood up a couple of times and put her paws on the top edge – I was thinking – what a bummer she can’t get in.  Then I turned around and … huh? where’d she go?  You got it – she jumped up and was in the garbage can.  I watched some people literally jump as they walked by the can – then all of a sudden the dog popped up – scared the daylights out of them.  They were looking at me (tourista) across the street trying to take a picture – not at the can…

Anyway – it’s a funny story.  You can tell the dogs here have staked out certain corners/sections of streets/aka ‘turf’ – cause when another dog comes along they are all over them – chasing them out of their spot.  For our boys we keep having to say “don’t call them” and “don’t pet” – but the nicer dogs do come up and are pretty friendly.  I found myself throwing some left over chicken over the fence last night as a surprise treat – I’m sure the locals wouldn’t like me doing that – but hey we’re just tourists right?

Speaking of pets, the boys seem to be doing ok without them – not sure about Cindy – but she’s hiding it well.  Probably misses Wilbur the most – so in Pucon we will have to find her a nice sheep she can snuggle with.  We’ve heard that Knowshaun decided that a window casing (inside) was a good thing to chew on as well our new live-in animal lover’s glasses (oops).  I sort of have this feeling that her first week might have been a bit different than ours.  I sure don’t miss Wilbur’s 6 a.m. moaning for the food bowl – shaken not stirred is his preferred method of food service in the a.m.


The Street Smart Boxer



Garbage Can Feasts – surprise


The bountiful reward after visiting the garbage can



  1. Grand dad says

    A great read and thank you for keeping us in the loop. Based on the narrative, you are doing a great job keeping the boys engaged in their “learning”. I am glad Gavin got “connected” with his class and shared his experiences. I am sure Hayden’s friends would like to see and hear from him as well.
    Keep track of the good wines in the area and let me know wineries. I will check with Trader Joes to see if I can taste a bit of your world.
    All is well here. Big SeaHawk win yesterday. Off to the Super Bowl again. Camden is doing great and talking more and more.

    Aunt Angie’s recovery is coming right along and she will be here for Camden’s birthday.

    Love to all!!!


    • Thanks – had to rub in the seahawk thing? Can’t wait to hear what sherman says this time. The broncos were looking so good and then… well you know… (ha ha). Glad aunt angies knee is coming along nicely.


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