Friday, September 23, 2011
...for the Fall 5% Challenge! This is the time of year when it starts to get colder and I feel like eating carbs all day and hibernating. So it's a very good thing that this challenge is starting up tomorrow.
I'm facing the first Saturday weigh-in with some trepidation because I know I've gained back a pound or two or three since the Summer Challenge ended. My goal this time around is to break the 60 kilo barrier and get back into my maintenance range, if not reach my original goal weight of 58 kilos.
There will be a trip to the mountains of Switzerland in October, around the middle of the eight weeks. It's a missionaries' retreat and there is always lots of eating involved - but also lots of hiking if the weather cooperates. Then exams in November. Challenges within the challenge!
The "last" roses of summer that I picked from the bushes in front of church yesterday. *wistful sigh*...
Oh...and GO FIRECRACKERS!
Thursday, September 08, 2011
I was on a bus just a few blocks from home here in this small town in Germany. I was on my way to teach an English lesson at a company in the next town. I don't usually travel by bus, but I had totaled my car two weeks earlier and didn't have a new one yet. When the news came on, the bus driver turned the radio up really loud. I thought that was a little strange until I heard what was being said on the broadcast. The first tower had just been hit.
When I got to the company, my students and I briefly talked about the news, but carried on with the lesson. My concentration was not very good and I think we were all in a bit of a daze. We tried to get some information over the internet during the break, but it was hard to get a connection. Afterwards, I caught the bus back home and spent the next two days glued to the TV. Some time that evening, I somehow I got the word that my sister in Brooklyn was OK.
So, my "place" was that seat in the bus. And yours?
(I know there will be lots of postings and internet content related to the anniversary, but this one is definitely worth a view:
Wednesday, September 07, 2011
I have a very lively group of 5 kids for English camp this week. Our rule of thumb is that we conduct the class as much as possible in the goal language, even though the kids are only 4th and 5th graders.
Two of the boys are best friends so speaking English with each other is difficult for them. Sitting still is difficult for them, too. Listening to the teacher and getting along with the other 3 kids - also not so hot. Giggling and jabbering in German - excellent!
So, I had the idea to have all the kids bring a hat to class. This morning, I gave the "respect each other" talk and reiterated the standard rules about not throwing things, etc. Then I told them that we would be wearing our hats for 40 minutes at a time and that, during those 40 minutes, we would all speak English. We would then take a break, take off our hats, and we could all speak as much German as we wanted for the next 5-10 minutes.
It worked! They all made an extra effort to speak English, knowing that they could speak German for a few minutes at intervals throughout the morning. I used the breaks to answer questions and explain upcoming tasks, but otherwise just let them chatter. I think they actually learned something today, although I had to back off our "goal language" policy.
Thankful for the answer to the prayers I said for wisdom in disciplining this group. I was really wondering how we were all going to survive the week!
Prayer Update: I got a good report from one of my missionary friends. He does apparently have a very slow-growing cancer in his liver but will not need a transplant. He'll be taking medication to stop the tumors from spreading to his other organs. I'm not sure if he will need surgery in the future; they are taking one step at a time. But he and his family are very encouraged by this news.
Fall Challenge Update: On the Fall 5% Challenge front, places are filling up. I just read that there is only room for 23 more challengers to bring the total to the cut-off of 550. So if you're going to take the plunge, this is the time to do it! www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
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