Mary loves soccer. Here she walks the sidelines, cheering on her teammates. Yes, she’s sporting her unicorn robe – chilly day in The Bend.
Coach M gives a tip to our Sweeper.
Mass late yesterday on an almost-empty campus. It’s Fall Break. No football game, no students, beautiful weather.
As Mass began, Mary leaned over and told me that she really didn’t care for pizza(again). She’d like a real dinner.
So here it is: chicken tenders-and-fries.
PS Cheerleader Mary loves her Blue&Gold Ponytail.
And so, Ceci, Finn, Gus, Kieran, Francis, Seamus, Joey — here’s Mary’s Cheer of Cheers for you–
Happy Easter to you, Francis, Seamus, Mary, Kieran, Augustine, Finnian, and Cecilia —
Hydra, where I’ve spent Holy Week, is a small island not far from Athens. NO CARS ALLOWED here, so it’s donkeys, donkeys everywhere. They meet the ferries to carry luggage up to hotels and guesthouses.
Mostly, they seem to carry loads of…everything: I’ve seen huge jars of olive oil, of paper towels, and cases of wine, milk, orange juice.
In my days here, I saw this woman and her donkey a couple times.
Construction workers and their donkeys, I see all the time.
Oh, and here’s what I eat for lunch — delicious, really. Really!
Here are 10 Greek seconds from Mass. Can you guess what those small green leaves are from? Hint: it’s Palm Sunday, not Easter — all over Greece
Dear Ceci, Finn, Gus, Kieran, and Francis —
I’ll be on my way tomorrow but got to spend this afternoon at Mary’s school. She wanted you five to see some photos —
Some of you have heard or (seen?) this artist…
Paul Cezanne (left) and Mary Briel (right)
Mary loves her uniform. And don’t you love her booties?
Mary’s kindergarten teacher is kind, creative and patient (and a grandmother!).
Father’s homily was about making sure that the faith grandparents pass on includes a sense of justice and inclusivity. ASK MOM or DAD (or Ceci or Finn, I’ll bet)!
Missing you ALL already!
Dear Francis, Mary, Kieran, Augustine, Finnian, and Cecilia —
Did you watch the Royal Wedding, or anyhow some of it, on Saturday? I hope you saw the part I showed my students at Melissa today, but if you didn’t, WATCH THIS. Your parents can explain how the song became an anthem, a sort of symbol, during the Civil Rights Movement in the U.S.
For now, look at these words near the end. See what a great English lesson it was for the young women!
If the sky that we look upon
Should tumble and fall
Or the mountain should crumble to the sea,
I won’t cry, I won’t cry
No, I won’t shed a tear
Just as long as you stand, stand by me.
Two questions as they listened:
- “‘I won’t be a friend!’ But, Teacher, why not?” I explained, and they understood instantly: “I won’t be afraid!”
- The title of this blog (“What means ‘Stand by Me’?” ) was a little tougher. I really wish one of you had been there to help me out. But then one of the young women shouted and pointed to her friend sitting across the table — “I know, I know — like you, like me, like you AND me. Here at Melissa!”
The women at Melissa are amazing. Sometimes, I just sit back and watch them teach themselves.
Missing you all!
P.S. Did you know that Auntie Elizabeth has done art with them here?
Hi to Francis, Kieran, Finnian, and Cecilia from MARY…
Best Sunflower cupcake — from Gerardo’s
Best Star Wars laser-wielding characters – Worcester Art MuseumBest – or anyhow, BIGGEST Roman mosaic in North America – Worcester MuseumBest Swim lessons – Assumption College
Dear Francis and Mary,
(K,A,F& C, this is old news for you, so I’ll write this to the Littlest cousins)
Very early this morning, I came again to the village where Ceci, Finnian, Augustine, and Kieran live. The human Cronin’s aren’t here, but MANGO came out to greet me!
He nearly knocked me over, so we went outside. We played “Fetch”!
This afternoon, Joachim came over to take Mango on a run. I met them along the way. Mango was very tired.
They went back to the house for food and water. I kept walking. That white city is called Lausanne.
I took this video just before the rain began to SPLAT, and the thunder began to ROAR!
You probably can’t hear the cowbells, but they make a sort of CLANG. Mary, you can play that on the piano. Francis, you can make that noise with your mouth!
Hi, Mary and Francis,
Today, while Ceci stayed home to prepare for her tests (Pre-IB Exams, they’re called), WE went to the mountains! Auntie Teresa, Uncle Chris, Finnian, Augustine, Kieran and I.
Across the way, we saw Mount Blanc. It is a very, very big mountain. Do you see the snow? Even in summer!
The boys’ lunch began with hot chocolate – the meat was really good (and the bread and the fondue…)
Finn did some good biking before lunch — here, he’s starting on his hot chocolate.
These Tibetan prayer flags were flying everywhere!
Kieran brought along his insect-catcher (and terrarium) — it works!
Hi to Francis and Mary!
Last week I got to take Finn’s great pal Benji to Switzerland for his Spring Break. Benji is so amazing, so chill, that even our flight attendants thought he went halfway around the world every week or two.
The train ride from the airport was the first time Benji saw Switzerland. I stopped the video before we got to the fields — and the cows with their bells!
Benji arrived, played after Gus and Kieran got home from school — and then he was whisked off to surprise Finn. They went to Verbier, a great place to ski and sled in the Alps, which are the mountains that surround your cousins’ house.
While Benji and the others were gone, my friend Annie came to visit us. First, we went to Gus’ basketball game.
Afterwards, over his snack, Annie gave Gus a quick French lesson.
One night Benji chose dessert…
One day, he went to school withFinn – I think they chose “Traditional” over “wellness,” that day.
Then Benji and Finn begged Teresa to take them to this HUGE Pokémon store (no photos) Another day we walked into the village. Well, I walked, and they scootered.
The last night of Benji’s visit we had FONDUE. I think you would really like it .
Dear Ceci, Finn, Gus, Kieran, Mary, and Francis,
Happy New Year! I got to talk/video chat/FaceTime with most of you, so I know you had a great Christmas and New Year. Soon you’ll be back at school, ECFE, or day care – can you believe it?!
Before you return, here are a few photos from my days in Hong Kong with Auntie Elizabeth and a Minnesota friend of mine, Jeanne.
HONG KONG IS HUGE.
This Mongkok fruit market runs for many blocks.
The 7 towers of Elizabeth’s complex have more apartments than St-Saphorin has people — over 2,000. On New Year’s Eve, from my bedroom in Elizabeth’s “Tower 4” apartment on the 17th floor, I could see a sliver of the wild and beautiful fireworks in Victoria Harbor.
HONG KONG HAS MANY TEMPLES AND CHURCHES.
One day we visited a huge and beautiful garden inside something called a nunnery. This is a convent for Buddhist nuns. We also visited the temple there, where a Fortune Teller told me I would live a long and lucky life. I told her that I already had, and she laughed and said, “Lucky, more!”
HONG KONG HAS GREAT ISLANDS
Another time, while Elizabeth worked in her studio on shark’s fin cyanotypes (yes!), Jeanne and I took the Star Ferry to Lamma Island for the day . We ate mussels, oysters, and shrimp – no shark’s fin for us! It was so sunny, we ate outside looking over the beach.
I loved the time there, and like Elizabeth, I hope you can go visit sometime (and if you go in summer, she has a nice pool…).
PS – A few years ago, Auntie Elizabeth did the drawings and paintings for “H” is for Hong Kong!