Sunday, June 30, 2013


Driving into San Francisco for the Paddle to the Sea finale, I was flipping through the radio stations when I hit upon a Spanish station.  Kai gasped from the backseat and said, "keep it here!"  I don't know why it never occurred to me before to listen to Spanish radio -- of course, given her love of Spanish, she was totally intrigued.

Kai listened intently for a few minutes and then said, "Mama, do you know what she is saying?"  I told her I didn't, and she said, "She's saying 'If I break my heart, I don't know what I'll do... It will hurt and I will die." 

I was blown away.  I'm sure she was right, and I know how well she has done picking up the language, but still -- these sorts of things just floor me. 

Friday was her last day of Spanish school for a month.  She'll go for a week at the end of July and then another week in mid-August.  This fall, she'll go to the after school program 3 days a week. 

On Friday, her teacher told me that whenever they give tours of the school to prospective parents, they always use Kailey as the example of how much a child can learn in a year.  She said she is her "prize student" because she is always speaking Spanish at school, so the visiting parents can hear how much she is prattling on with her Spanish! It's that, and the fact that she is an example of how much a child can learn at school -- even when the language is not spoken at home -- that makes her teacher so proud (and makes me so proud, too!)

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Her first graduation

Last night was Kai's preschool graduation celebration.  It was such a great year for Kailey.  We are so proud of all she learned and how she tackled the challenge of a Spanish Immersion program as the new kid in the class.  She formed such close friendships with her classmates and truly loved her preschool. 

We, of course, captured most of the ceremony on video!

First, each of the kids came up on their own to introduce themselves.  They were supposed to say their name, their age, and something they like (in Spanish, of course).  It was really intimidating.  Most of the kids seemed really taken aback by the idea of speaking into a microphone while about 75 people watched.  Seriously, it took me graduating from law school and being forced to do public presentations nearly every week before I felt comfortable talking in front of large groups.  It was a lot for a 4 - 5 year old to take on.  Most of the kids eventually mumbled something into the microphone. 

A couple of the kids did a great job, marching onto the stage and saying their lines. But, most were pretty shy and followed Thomas' example.  One little boy refused to speak altogether.  He just moved his mouth without any words coming out. 

And then there was Kailey:

(she said, "I don't want this" as she pushed the microphone away)

She did actually say her lines once the mic was away from her face -- she just didn't want anything to do with a microphone.  After the ceremony, we asked her if they has practiced with a mic and she told us they had not -- which, I think was probably one of the issues.  Not only was she unprepared for the audience, she was unprepared for the mic.  If there's one thing Kai likes to be, it's prepared -- ESPECIALLY, in a performance setting.  Still, it was cute and afterwards, everyone kept coming up to us saying that Kai's refusal was in perfect Spanish!

Following the introduction of the children, there was a song:

And then a dance:

And then the distribution of the "diplomas":

And then they sang their class song -- the first song Kai learned, way back in September -- and still one of our favorites:
And then the final song:
Afterwards, there was a potluck and the kids got to run around and let off all the nervous energy they stored up during the big performance -- they were HYPER!  Kai loved celebrating with her friends!

Kai with Bianca and Hannah: 

Family photo (not the best one ever!)

I love how Thomas is looking at Kai (she was SOOO hungry -- she ate 3 HUGE platefuls of mac & cheese and then a great big sundae... and when we got home, she said -- "I didn't have dinner!"):

Kai and her teachers, Juliana and Rosalinda:


Happy preschool graduation, Kailey!!  I'm so looking forward to your next adventure. KINDERGARTEN... here she comes! 

p.s.  Luckily, they are going to do an afterschool program starting in the Fall so the kids can continue to learn Spanish and see each other a couple of times a week.  Even though we will still be seeing everyone, it's bittersweet that this time is over. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

Talking with Kailey

Ahhh... it's been so long since I posted!  I wish I had more time to jump on the blog and write things down.  I am so glad to have this space to record my observations about Kai and keep a log of her developments, the funny things she says, and... well, our lives!  And yet, I never find the time to update it.  I keep thinking one of these days things will slow down, but that never seems to happen.

We are so lucky that Kai is usually adaptable to our busy lifestyles.  Although, the other day, we went camping for the weekend with Leo, Soren, Amy and Dave for Paddle to the Sea and Kai had a tough time returning home.  Or, rather, going to school the Monday after our weekend away.  She was fine Sunday night and Monday morning.  And even when we first got to school, there were no issues.  But, as we were in the car pulling away, Kai appeared at the glass door to the school, pounding on the door, tears streaming down her face.  We were alarmed.  More than alarmed.  She NEVER does that.  So, we parked again and hurried back inside.  She was crying and crying.  When we asked her why, she said she wanted to go back to camping.  I guess that's the sign of a good weekend!  It was a lot of fun.  Kai is now at an age where she can just run around with the boys and play the same games they are playing.  It was pretty cute watching them.  Her favorite part was, "the marshmallows".  Of course.

Anyway, since it's been forever since I wrote, I thought I would just write down a few of the funny things that Kai has said recently.  She cracks me up!


This morning, driving to school, Kailey announced, "I wish I was a bird and could fly."  I agreed with her and said that was why people invented airplanes, because a lot of people have wanted to fly over the years and so we figured out how to do it by building airplanes.

"And Bombits," Kai said.  I didn't understand, "what's a bombit?" I asked.

"You know, a bombit.  Like in Madagascar.  When they go in the bombit and it shoots them out and they go flying."

"Ohhhh.. .you mean a cannon." I said.

Kailey thought about this for a minute and replied, "there are two words for cannons, you can say 'canon' or you can say 'bombit'".

I decided to quit arguing.  Bombit it is.


Earlier this week, also when we were driving to school, Kai announced, "I hate English.  I wish we only spoke Spanish."

I said, "well, then a lot of people wouldn't understand you because a lot of people speak English where we live."

Kai replied, "well, I wish we live lived in Puerto Rico." She said this using the Spanish pronunciation for Puerto Rico, expertly rolling her Rs.  She always rolls her Rs.  Even in English.  It's hilarious. Too bad we are only going to be in Puerto Rico a couple of nights this summer (during our Epic Adventure) -- she's so excited about going there.  Indeed, it seems she's already ready to move there permanently!