Ship's Log               s/v Uliad 


March 8:


     So Emmett had his parent-teacher conference this past week.  It's funny, when we came back to the US last September, I remember thinking to myself that I'm sure Em would do fine academically--it was the peer interaction I was worried about after having relatively few playmates his own age for the past two years.  In the mean time, he's made friends, joined scouts and choir, and apparently done quite well on the 4th grade social scene.  And now, walking into Parent-Teacher Conference night at Emmett's school I caught myself thinking, "Well socially he's doing fine, but I hope he's not having any trouble academically."


     What if we'd been deluding ourselves about the quality of our homeschool education onboard Uliad?  What if all the little annoying things that I could just chalk up to normal 9 year old behavior were really a sign of trouble?  Fortunately, Emmett's teacher quickly put us at ease.  Turns out he's been doing quite well in everything.  And despite my angst over his preoccupation with television over books since our return, his 4th grade teacher reported that he was tested as reading at the 12th grade level!  We have no doubt that is entirely due to all the reading he does on passages without the electronic distractions.  So my parental anxieties have been relieved.  Emmett is doing just fine with this life. In fact, I daresay he's thriving.


      I know these days won't last...when my biggest fatherly worry is whether Emmett is making friends on the playground...when Emmett still enjoys hanging out with Mom & Dad...when all of us are looking ahead toward the same goal.  Someday he'll take all his pluck and charm and smarts and he'll head out on his own to go try to change a few things in this big world.  In moments of pride I think "savor it Steve, this moment is a gift."  Just like Uliad is a gift--with it's opportunity to live and learn and play together.  I can always make more money; but I'll never get more time.  I have to remember that.  



March 20: 

      Here in Colorado, we're about as far as one can get from the ocean.  Lots of kids here have never even seen the ocean, much less sailed across it or swum with sea creatures in it.  So Emmett can be quite a fascinating character to people around here.  His cub scout leader asked him to give a little presentation a while back to the great interest of his friends.  At his last meeting, they gave him some farewell gifts and lots of well wishes.  (i.e. Don't get bitten by a shark!)  Now this week, he was even asked to be on a local radio show to describe a few of his experiences.  The show is ostensibly about animals, so Emmett and Kathleen went to the studio and spend 30 minutes talking about all the animals we've seen during our travels.  If you'd like to hear the interview, you can click here:

Emmett's Radio Interview (MPEG-4 Audio file 14 MB  ***big download!!!***)


     Once again, I was quite proud of him.  I thought he sounded like quite a poised and articulate young man.  Of course I'm biased.


March 28:

     Friday was Emmett's last day of public school for a while, so his class had a little party for him.  Kath & I brought in the usual cupcakes and juice boxes for everyone.  We've always travelled with little business cards that have a photo of Uliad and our names, email address, web site address, and home address on it.  These "boat cards" are very popular among cruisers.  It definitely makes it easier to keep track of other boats you meet when you can exchange cards.  Anyway, we made up Emmett his own boat card with his email address and a picture of him kneeboarding in front of Uliad.  Within two days, Emmett had passed out almost a hundred of them around school and already the Emails have been pouring in from his new pen-pals.  How long will it be until he needs his own computer?

     So welcome to all the new blog readers from Ann Heimann Elementary School in Greeley, Colorado.  I guess I'll have to take this moment to remind myself to keep this website strictly PG-rated! 

     This weekend we packed up all our remaining belongings and stuffed them into a corner of my brother's basement.  Now all that's left for me is three more days of work before we fly home to Uliad.   



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