Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Swine Flu update

Well they've decided to end the school year for all kindergartens and primary schools. I have mixed feelings about this... Isabella will not be able to say good-bye to her friends, some of which may not be returning to her school next year but she is happy to be at home and playing. I don't know what this means for me and the two weeks I was to work in July. While it would be nice to be done early, I was counting on the pay for those two weeks. So we'll see...

I wasn't all that concerned about this but now that it's hit closer to home, I'm trying to be extra cautious... I don't want to risk getting sick and quarantined just in time for us to catch our flight back to the US. So I would greatly appreciate your prayers.

We had our beach trip with the school today and it was so much fun! Isabella had a blast and got to make lots of new friends. I was also quite blessed at the end when all the parents/children gathered to say good-bye to those leaving. I felt especially blessed when they got to me, they said they were still working on a way to keep me even more part-time. They know my reasons for leaving so they're trying to respect that but also find a way to keep me connected. I really appreciated it!

Tomorrow, Mike and I are going out to celebrate our anniversary. We're going to have a Thai dinner, go to prayer meeting and end with an evening of Transformers. Tomorrow is the opening in HK and we're going to see it at the IMAX. I'm hoping that CPK will stay opened long enough for me to get a piece of key lime pie for the movie. hehe

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Swine Flu

... while this hit months ago, they managed to keep it quite contained, catching the majority of the people at the airport until this week. Apparently there were 12 cases in one school as of this week and now all nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools are closed for two weeks! This is so crazy to me. Last year we had an extra week off due to the normal flu and now two weeks for this. On the 23rd, they will determine whether or not to keep school closed or reopen to finish out the year.

Many international schools sent their students home yesterday basically saying, "See you next year!" They're not bothering to come back for 1 day on the 26th. Makes sense to me but apparently some are quite angry about this. Technically though, schools are to remain open and staffed in case some children have no place to go (aka.. no parents at home or helpers) though some schools are allowing anyone who shows up at the door to stay.

This means that I still have to work... and obviously I'm disappointed but I'm more frustrated than anything. I feel like our school is really being taken advantage of. In the 4 days school has been suspended, we've had anywhere from 10 to 17 students out of about 36 total and it's not because they have no one to care for their children. I fight my feelings every morning and it's been quite a struggle for me... a real test of patience and joy.

As of today, 2 Secondary schools have now been closed. I don't think that will mean any change for us but it shows that the H1N1 is spreading. I'm not all that worried but I am trying to be cautious.... keeping the kids at home and trying to stay away from bigger crowds. I'm thankful that we live in Sai Kung as it's a much smaller community than where we previously lived and with the house that we live in, we are so blessed to have the space to be able to stay at home and not go nuts.

We have arranged some playdates with some school friends and Isabella still has her swim lessons but both of those are with a small amount of children, of parents who are also very cautious.

But this does make me nervous about traveling, as many of the cases we initially got were from flights from the US. I don't want to put my child's health at risk but I certainly don't want to miss my chance to go home. So we would greatly appreciate all prayers for our health and protection from this virus.

On a much lighter note... we FINALLY had some sunshine today in what seems like months. Izzy and I went swimming and she's been practicing her treading water, kicking and blowing bubbles. She seems to be stuck at putting her face/head under water so I tried really hard to get her to do it today. She finally gave it a go but I missed it, thankfully she did it again and I said to her, 'Wow! You know you should really try to do it 4 times since your 4 years old.' and of course she did it. Then she kept going. She asked if I could call Reg (her teacher) to let her know how many times she put her face under. I was so proud of her because I know this was really a scary thing for her. We also practiced jumping in... yet another thing she has been hesitant to do (aside from sitting on the edge and falling in). Before we got out I asked her if she wanted to jump one more time, she said yes. And then it was... 'one more time, just 3 more times, 5 more times, okay mommy?' She's getting braver!