Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Computer Maintenance

Well, I continue working at the school getting the computers up and ready for the coming year. With the 65+ computers at the school, this is a big process. I've been enjoying it so far and have learned a lot from Andrew the IT director for the school. Friday I had the wonderful adventure of helping Andrew at Simlim. Simlim is a mall devoted to computer supplies. Somewhere around 300 separate shops selling all different types of parts, it was an interesting time, about 7 hours of walking around the mall, haggling with shopkeepers, and carrying supplies back to the van. It was fun, yet tiring, didn't get back from the shops until 8 pm.

I've also been growing a bit tired of the commute. It takes about 45 minutes to get to work, and about an hour to get back. After the 10 minute commute all year, that is a long time!

Monday, June 20, 2005

Summer Vacation

Well, we are settling in with our new summer routine. It has been nice being in a new home. We are house-sitting for one of the school families. It is a nice home and much larger than our own. As part of our responsibilities, we are taking care of their dog, and dwarf hamsters. So home life is busy with walking the dog and taking care of our 7 dwarf hamsters (4 of our own and 3 that we are hamster sitting). To fill up the rest of our time, we have been working at the school for 7 hours each day. I've been enjoying the time working on the computers, and even more I've been enjoying not having any homework to bring home at nights or on the weekends!

Betsy has a slightly lighter load at RDA over the summer, only volunteering in the mornings, but is keeping busy by working as a receptionist on Mondays and Tuesdays at the school.

Our schedule will continue in this way for the next few weeks until we move back to our place in the middle of July to get ready for my parents arrival on the 21st.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

School's out for summer!

Wow, the school year has come to a close. It is hard to believe that a full 10 months have passed since we arrived here. Today I finished my job of cleaning up after the year and am officially on summer vacation. Tomorrow I start my summer job! I will be helping Andrew with the maintenance of the computers at the school. I will be working through most of the summer doing this, it will be nice having the pressures of teaching gone, but still having a job!

Most of the faculty are in the process of leaving for the summer break. Only a very few of us are staying in the country for the summer. It will be a quiet summer, but Betsy will continue volunteering at RDA, and she will also be working at the school in the office 3 days a week. These summer jobs will help us with our summer expenses, but could also be a bit of a strain. I look forward to the real vacation that will come in July when my parents arrive for a two week visit!

Love you all!

Special Olympics

This last Saturday, June 4th, was the Special Olympics held at RDA. I, Betsy, was given the great opportunity to help in this event. Some of us leaders started the program with a demonstration of the leading technique we use at RDA. Then students performed dressage tests. I had two independent riders take the test. They did well, and I was so proud of their achievements. I was very nervous because I was the one calling out the pattern of the test for each rider. If I had made a mistake, it would have ruined the test. Thank you, Lord, for getting us all through!!

After the dressage tests, we had relay games for other riders. These riders were led to the start line in a trot, dismounted, then ran on foot through the relay. The races were all very close until the end of the second race. One student tripped and bumped his knee. He was the last rider for his team, so the whole crowd cheered as he got up and finished the race. Now that is sportsmanship!!

Lastly, some other students and instructors had prepared a drill ride (patterns on horseback). I was not supposed to help with this because it was with a class on Tuesdays and I don't volunteer that day. But one of the leaders couldn't make it, so I filled in. It was lots of fun!!

I've included some photos of the event with captions explaining each. So, now you can have a glimpse of that great day!!

I led Harley in the leading demonstration. This type of leading is called "Hands Free" because the horse is led mostly with voice commands. With riders, we still attach a lead rope to the head collar of the horse for safety. But as you can see, we did not have them attached in this demonstration. This photo was taken at the end, when we "bowed" with the horses.

This is my first rider performing her test. You can see me in the back calling out instructions for her.

This is my second rider. He was very nervous, but he accomplished his goal of completing the test without a single mistake in the pattern.

My two students came in third and fourth in the dressage test. Well done!!!

Here are two competitors in the relay games. The adults with them are "sidewalkers", people who walk beside the rider on each side to keep the rider balanced. After the riders were dismounted, the sidewalkers ran the course with them.

This relay racer was one of my students on Thursday mornings. I always enjoy her smile!