Saturday, September 27, 2008

5 K Races!

Tis the 5K Season! Two weeks ago we ran the first race - hospice of Port Orange. I beat Benjamin by a mere 30 seconds. Alexander ran with his friend Lynnlee, and Jonathan ran the kiddie race. He was very proud of his medal and stuffed animal!
Today was the next race in the series. Lynnlee wasn't there, so I ran with Alexander. Benjamin had elected to sit this one out, so he watched Jonathan during the race and took pictures. Chris was going so fast, he sped by the camera. I paced Alexander to run his personal best - 33:53!

What I love about local races is that you never know who is going to be there. Alexander lucked out and was the only one in his age group!!! So here he is, holding his first place trophy. Pretty cool, huh??
Later, Jonathan and Benjamiun ran the one mile kiddie race. I think Jonathan is still wearing the medal now. All in all, it was a fun morning. Then we got home and had to mow the grass (Chris and Benjamin - see Benjamin's blog for details) and clean the house (the rest of us!) But now we've finished and are relaxing while watching Evan Almighty. All in all, a very productive day.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Blind inspiration

Watch this video - it's a four minute report on a summer program for blind students. The girl in the "Seabreeze High School" shirt will be in Chris' class in January.

New bedtime routine

We're into day 3 of our new bedtime routine. Right now, all three boys are sick. Not terribly sick, but they have colds with runny noses, cough, etc. Benjamin especially sounds bad today and will probably stay home from school tomorrow,.

What does that have to do with bedtimes? Well, Chris and I decided that one of the reasons they are sick is lack of sleep and a compromised immune system. This year they are all up by 6AM (Benjamin gets up at 5:30) and have been falling asleep after 9PM. That's partly because when they go to bed together, they spend time arguing about having lights on or off and how wide open the door should be.

For awhile, we contemplated how to give them their own rooms. Our house, however, just doesn't allow it. In order for them each to have their own rooms, we'd have to give up our "family room" and put the TV in the living room, something I'm not willing to do. So the dormroom stays.

Instead, Chris suggested that we stagger bedtimes. Since Sunday, we decreed that Kindergarteners go to bed at 7:30, 1st and 2nd graders go at 7:45, 3rd and 4th graders at 8:00, and 5th graders may stay up until 8:30. Amazingly, it has worked wonders. Jonathan has time to fall asleep before Alexander joins him, and Alexander is usually asleep by 8:30. They are easier to get up in the morning, too. Tonight at dinner, Alexander remarked that he likes the new bedtimes (!) Now the only question is why we didn't think of this earlier.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Obama for President

Barack comes to Daytona Beach!

This morning, Chris, Benjamin and I left the house around 7 AM to stand in line for Barack Obama. We were greeted with this rainbow, a good sign if I've ever seen one. He spoke at Bethune-Cookman University. This theater seats only 2,500, so we were extremely lucky to have tickets. Lucky because Chris' parents were willing to stand in line for 3 hours on Friday morning to snag us some tickets. We waited in line for about 2 hours or so before it started to move. At the door, we were greeted by TSA personnel and metal detectors. We finally got seats in the balcony.
About an hour later, the governor of Kansas, Kathleen Sibelius, and the governor of Arkansas (I forget her name) gave their introductory speeches.
Moments later, there he was!!! Oh, how we wished we were on the stage. But it was exciting even from the balcony. He gave an incredible 30 minute speech, well worth all the waiting. It is so exciting to be part of this - he is an incredible speaker, and had all the answers I wanted for what is ailing our society. This was a morning Benjamin will never forget. I only wish we could have gotten another ticket so Alexander could join us. Jonathan was too young to stand for so long.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Economics 101

One of the concepts that we teach in Economics very early on is something called Opportunity Cost. Although I know everyone who took an economics course in high school or college already knows what I'm talking about, let me assume that there is maybe one of you that has forgotten what this is: Opportunity cost says that every decision we make carries a cost -- that is, that we must sacrifice something to get something else. Boy, is the Weinrich family learning opportunity cost first-hand!

About a month ago, we were all extremely happy and relieved that Karen finally found a teaching job. Not only does the checkbook like this circumstance, but we continue to rejoice that that job has turned out to be in a school that has a great administration and wonderful colleagues. The atmosphere at Trinity is very conducive to both spiritual growth and educational excellence. On top of that, she only has 6 students! Wonderful! Right?

But (and there's always a But when speaking of opportunity cost), what's the cost? We're having a hard time adjusting to the forgone time at home. Our meals are suffering since she's not home to prepare the delicious meals that take time to develop. We spend the time at home doing laundry, doing the dishes, and straightening the house that the kids still (despite the lost time) seem to be able to destroy very readily. The boys are more resistant to chores since they don't get to "play" at much (they're in an after-school program). Let's just say that we have a new-found respect for families that have both parents working. And our eternal admiration goes out to those single parents who pull this miraculous feat off on their own. Amazing!

As time goes on, we'll have to take account of our decision. Is the added income worth the stress?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Ice Florida!!!

On Sunday, Alexander, Benjamin, and I went to their friend Lynnlee's birthday party, held at the local ice skating rink. I knew about the place, but had never been there. Well, duh!! What a perfect place to go on a 90 degree day. And, yes, it was over 90 degrees on Sunday.

The first two hours were devoted to skating. Benjamin took off pretty quickly, probably because of his rollerblading this summer. Alexander got off to a shakier start, but after a little while got the hang of it. He had to learn to glide, not run on the ice. I was proud of myself - I didn't fall once. It was a blast. We ended with pizza, cake, the opening of the gifts, and goody bags. The whole way home, Alexander kept saying how much he liked ice skating.

Here are two videos I took (while skating). On the way out, I saw the sign that says cameras are not allowed on the ice. Ooops. These videos are hilarious, although a bit bumpy. I thought I had turned them correctly, but I guess not. So turn your head sideways and enjoy!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I can't stand it anymore...

Well, I was trying to do what Barack said and leave Sarah Palin's family out of it, but after watching her last night, I'm just going to burst if I don't say something.

She is "proud of her daughter's choice." Since Palin doesn't believe in abortion AT ALL, her daughter obviously didn't have a choice about keeping the baby. Which choice is she proud of? Her choice to have unprotected premaritial sex? When you teach abstenance only, this is a predictable outcome.

I have to admit, I had a sexist reaction when I learned about her 4 month old son with Down's. My gut reaction is to ask why she is running for vice president when she has a special needs child at home. I know, no one would ever ask that about a man. But, you know what? A man can't breastfeed....

That being said, even without her family, she's still not qualified to be vice president. I have raised a family, joined the PTA (although my kids don't play hockey), and I've traveled to more countries than she has. I'm just as qualified as she is! Hmmmm....