We finally made it out of California and into Oregon a few days ago, and I would go as far as to say Oregon is even more beautiful than California. Or it has more of the things we love (like water) with way less people, for much less money.
In the last four days we have:
Thrown snowballs at Crater Lake
Bathed in hot springs
Swum in one of the many pristine rivers
Camped in campsites like these for $10 a night
Climbed up these sand dunes
Explored rockpools filled with giant green sea anenomes and purple starfish
Watched the Oompa Loompas in the cheese factory (M’s words, not mine)
Do I sound like I am working for the Oregon Tourist Board?
Also, the girls are playing really nicely together and I have not been close to losing my marbles in the last few days. I am impressed at how long they can spend in the back of the car playing or just sucking their thumbs and gazing at the closed curtain (they prefer not to look out of the window). Here is M playing with a banana skin:
We know it’s time to find a campground when they start biting their toenails and smelling each others’ feet.
Sometimes I sit in the back with the kids as we are driving, as we have decided to carve out an hour each day to do “school work”, because just casually weaving it in wasn’t really happening. An activity book here and a postcard there is not really a viable school week. I mean, I know all the arguments about why she’ll be fine what with everything else that she’s learning, but I’m worried she’ll lose confidence at school if she finds that she can’t do the things the rest of the class can do when she gets back.
Reading is fine as she loves my Kindle, but writing is another story (ha, geddit?). I found myself standing over her this morning saying “Come on, just another few lines of the story and you’ll be done. What happens next? Does the wolf come?” I’m pretty sure the great writers of our time did not develop a love of writing with their mothers flapping about them making unhelpful suggestions. She won’t do it just because we are asking her to, or because it’s “school time”. She just starts writhing around and becomes suddenly very interested in the washing up. We clearly need a different strategy.
Maths is OK, Mr. Hotford has been doing quizzes with her, which appeals to her competitive nature, and I think she is keeping up (apart from the time – who would have thought it would be so hard to teach kids to tell the time?)
It is certainly true that she is learning many other things though. She has learnt to pick out different animal footprints in the sand, she knows about migration and hibernation and how snow feeds rivers and why sand can be black and where Portland is on a map and all manner of other things that must be sinking in somewhere to be useful at some point. Maybe she can work for the Oregon Tourist Board one day – you could do worse than that!This entry was posted in Oregon