Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Last Day of School

Friday was the kids' last day of school until September 17.

It was a strange and emotional day.

It actually began late the night before when Pete was in Germany.  His brother, Jon, is touring in with Christina Perri as a band member, and they were playing at a venue in Cologne, so Pete made the trip out to the concert.
(Jon icing his wrists in the tour bus, in case you're wondering what's up with the pose)
Completely spur of the moment, Jon decided to come back to Luxembourg with Pete for a visit.  They got in around 2am.

In the morning Pete and I both walked the kids to school for the last day.

This summer this building will be leveled and a new building started.  James will be in a "container" across the street for the next 2 years.  
Daphne moves to the primary school next door in the fall.
we always wave to James through the window after we drop him off
Next I headed to a coffee meet-up with the following group I found out about via the American Women's Club of Luxembourg:

I met with 3 other (European but English-speaking) friendly and very down-to-earth ladies from this group at a restaurant in the city center, and it was really encouraging to talk to other moms of kids in the local schools.  I'm looking very much looking forward to spending more time with these ladies and meeting their children.

I then fetched the kids from school and Jon from our apartment, and we headed into the city center on the bus to meet Pete for lunch.  Unfortunately, Daphne was feeling quite ill, but she toughed it out and we made it to lunch.

After lunch I could tell Daphne was taking a turn for the worse, so we headed straight home instead of going to the afternoon session of school.  It was pouring rain so we would have been stuck inside for the afternoon no matter what.  She perked up enough for a coloring session with Uncle Jon...

...but soon collapsed into bed with a fever.  While Jon stayed with the kids, I popped over to the school to pick up all their belongings and say goodbye to the teachers.

It was hard for me to watch the other kids say goodbye to their teachers and classmates and know that James and Daphne were missing out.  It was quite emotional for me to leave as well.  I didn't realize how, despite its challenges, school has been our safety net and our connection to the Luxembourgish community over these past 6 weeks.  The kids and I are now "loose in Luxembourg" for the next 2 months.  It's up to us to keep up the connections we've made so far and continue to form new ones over the summer, and I have to find ways to keep up their language skills.  I frantically tried to get a couple more phone numbers from the parents of classmates who Daphne and James have mentioned by name and not in a negative light, and who I suspected I could communicate with in English.  It's difficult for me to be this forward with strangers, but I'm doing my best to be proactive for the sake of the kids.  We'll see if I'm brave enough to act on these connections over break.  Complicating matters, many families will be gone for a large portion of the summer on holiday (and I've completely lost track of who's going to be gone when).

Anyway, Jon had to leave for the train back to Germany before Pete got home from work.  Such a short visit, but it was so great to see him, even for just a few hours.

Daphne woke up later but was sick for the rest of the evening.  Next morning - completely fine.  This has now happened to her 3 times since we arrived here.  Luxembourgish germs must be prevalent but not potent.

Oh, and the the kids each got a couple gifts from their teachers, including these "First Thousand Words in Luxembourgish" picture books...

already studying' up
There really aren't a ton of books and other resources available in Luxembourgish (as it seems to be largely a spoken and not written language), so we're thankful to have something.  There are English translations in the back.

Well, the kids have now completed 6 weeks of Luxembourgish school.

We are so proud of them!!

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