Harsh life lessons

     Our trip home was going fairly smoothly yesterday.  We spent the morning hanging around our hotel.  After breakfast we had to feed the animals one last time.  Evan fed Toby (our swan) and said "good bye Toby.  I'll miss you.  I love you!"  It was so sweet.  We also fed the heron, white ibises, turtle, and fish.  We saw a new bird up in a tree that we hadn't seen before.  As best we could tell after looking around on- line it was an Anhinga.  We handed in our keys and headed for the airport.  The boys were quite tired after our week and were getting on each other nerves (and admittedly my nerves as well), but we made it to the airport and through security in record time.  They were wonderful on the flight and at dinner on the way home when we realized we were missing a Nintendo DS.  
       As soon as we arrived home we dumped out all the carry- on bags just in case we had the DS and we were missing it but unfortunately that wasn't the case.  The DS was missing.  Ian was so upset, and while I understood that I was a bit angry myself.  We asked all the boys to look around and check the plane/ seats around them to make sure they had everything.  At 8 years old I do expect him to be responsible.  I explained to him how I felt and told him that while I felt bad he had lost it and understood he was upset I wouldn't be buying him a new one.  It was an important life lesson in responsibility and I bet next time when I ask him to check to make sure he has everything he'll be looking quite closely.  I told him I'd see what I could do but if it is truly lost he'll have to work and save up some money to buy himself another.  Once home I did do my best to try and find it through the airport lost and found and Southwest's flight and I'm happy to report it looks like it was turned it at Norfolk airport's lost and found (our plane's next stop!).   
        Today was a busy day of grocery shopping, laundry and errands and I didn't think we'd be doing anything school- like today.  I had them put away all the non- clothing items they had packed in their suitcases and carry- ons while I started some laundry this morning.   They each had a new Lego set from Legoland they were dying to put together so they worked on that this morning while I caught up on bills and correspondences.  They played quietly almost all morning and I found out later that Alec spent the morning reading a few books in his room while the other two boys were busy with their Lego's still.   We all watched an animal planet show on the top 10 divers and learned about an entirely new animal called a dugong.  They look very similar to a manatee and are considered part of the same family.  We also learned that sperm whales are the best divers and can hold their breath for up to two hours!  It was a very short and yet intriguing show. 
      After that we headed out to the store and I had my boys do a quick lesson in rounding to the nearest dollar at the store.  This is a new concept and one we'll be working on some more.  They easily understood that  $2.99 was closer to $3 than to $2 since it was only a penny away but had a more difficulty when an item was $2.30.  I didn't tell them the rules of rounding yet as I'm hoping they'll come up with the rule on their own the more we work with this concept.  As I helped them round I also had them add up the total purchase price of the 4 or 5 items we were buying to get an approximate cost.  I told them it's always a good idea to have a general idea of what you're spending so you can know if everything was added up right at the register. 
     They spent their afternoon at the library getting some new books and playing with a new friend they met.  They built an elaborate block dam, tunnel and water way system with all the blocks and trucks.  They read and picked out books on all topics from gold mining, trucks, panda bears, and endangered animals to the underground railroad.   Alec is the only one who read an entire book cover to cover while we were there.  He found a cute Splat the cat book called Splish! Splash! Splat!  The other two boys just take quick picture walks and read a few words on each page to make sure the book is something they want to take home with them.    We left with another dozen or so books to add to our pile of books we already had out.  I told the boys we really need to start reading them soon. 


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