C Squared: New & Improved

C Squared has moved!  The new and improved C Squared W can be found here.

We’ve moved back to Blogger and are sporting a gorgeous new design thanks to our talented friend, Katie.  She has mad skills!

Go check it out, and if you like what you see, please add yourself as a “Follower” and/or sign for an email subscription (Mom, that’s for you!) so it’s not too lonely over there.  We’ll consider it a housewarming gift!

C Squared. That's us! We're crazy, we know it and love it.

Merci beaucoup!

xoxo, C Squared

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In.Light.In Fridays

One of the highlights of my week is hanging out with some of my favorite kids at In.Light.In on Friday afternoons.  This is the fourth semester that I’ve been involved with In.Light.In, so I’ve known most of these kids for over a year now.  I love hanging out with them, coloring, playing Uno, and kicking the soccer ball with them.  I have a soft spot in my heart for these kids, especially the hilarious boys and sassy little girls.  They are just too cute!

{just hanging out. love him!}

{all smiles}

{sassy artiste}

{mesmerized by the toy airplane on the field that's gearing up to fly}

{so serious and proud of his penguin}

{back handspring - midair! so impressive!}

{sweet girls}

{sweet girls}

Bon weekend!

Sistahs

Have I ever told you how cool my little sisters are?  Well, they are really, amazingly cool!

Margaret is in her junior year at Sewanee: The University of the South where she is a history major.  She is currently spending her spring semester studying abroad in Rome, Italy.  She is loving it, and spent last weekend visiting friends in Nice, France for Carnival.  Pretty awesome!

Frannie graduated from Sewanee last May with a B.A. in Global and International Studies and a minor in Spanish.  Frannie spent her summer working at A BarA Ranch in Wyoming.  A few weeks ago, Frannie joined the U.S. Peace Corps as a Community Education Promoter in the South American country of Guyana.  She will spend the next two years there, and is jumping right in to her experience – eating chicken feet and taking bucket baths!  She is brave and so impressive!

In addition to being world travelers, they are also smart, hilarious, and very artistic.  Frannie has traveled to Ecuador, Haiti, and Honduras and is fluent in Spanish; Margaret speaks French and is learning Italian.  They both have awesome fashion senses, and I love to steal borrow their clothes and get fashion advice from them when I’m home.  They are also gorgeous and adventurous… be sure to check out their blogs (click on their names, above)!

So there you have it, the world traveling sisters, currently all living in three different countries.  Thanks, Mom, for passing along your adventurous streak to us!  Fun fact: my mom, Katrina, lived in Germany for two years after college.  She has some awesome stories!

Wednesdays at CALLS

{One of my favorite afternoons at CALLS - we walked to Purple Turtle Beach to sketch and enjoy snacks. I love these kids, even though they are trying way to hard to look tough in this photo!}

For the past year, I have spent nearly ever Wednesday at CALLS, the local alternative high school.  For my first two semesters in Dominica, I tutored students and recent graduates, working with them on homework, reading, and math skills (aka maths), in addition to mentoring them and just chatting with them about life.

I have worked mainly with the boys, which is pretty rewarding and entertaining, but also, often frustrating, since many of them have a hard time in school and come from difficult backgrounds.  A few of the students I have tutored have left school and dropped out, which is  really disheartening.  I am always so impressed by the students who stick with CALLS and complete the two-year program.  CALLS provides job training and vocational skills, so even for students who don’t excel in a traditional classroom setting, CALLS can teach them a great deal.

Last semester, I joined my good friend Mary, a Peace Corps Volunteer here in Dominica, and helped her teach art classes at CALLS on Wednesday afternoons.  It is always interesting – some days good, some days bad – but overall, I love being part of the school and getting to know the students, even though they aren’t always thrilled about art class.  In a few minutes, I’ll head to Portsmouth for my first art class this semester.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that we have a good afternoon!

 

Belated Birthday Surprise!

Charlie celebrated his 29th birthday back in January while I was visiting my family in the states.  I was sad to miss Charlie’s birthday, but promised I’d make it up to him with a cake and belated birthday celebration.  What he didn’t know was that he’d have a little birthday surprise.

Let me just say that planning a birthday surprise (even a small one with a handful of friends) for a super-focused, stressed out med school student is no easy task.

I went over to a friend’s house to make fun cupcakes – yellow cake batter topped and filled with homemade chocolate frosting, decorated with chocolate shavings and Rastafarian colored M&M’s.  Plus the cupcake wrappers went with Charlie’s island nickname, Jungle Charlie, so perfect!  Making the treats was the easy part.

The tricky party was getting Charlie to go to his own surprise party.  I kept it small, since I knew a test was coming up and Charlie wouldn’t be able to hang out for too long, so I just invited a handful of close friends.  Normally, Charlie will study at school in the afternoons, come home for dinner around seven, and then study at home for the rest of the evening.  The plan was to have dinner at home and then go get some ice cream after dinner, where Charlie would discover his friends and cupcakes waiting for him.

Well, the evening of the party, Charlie come home for dinner, but was ready to head back to school immediately after, which left me stalling for forty-five minutes.  This meant reading aloud all the recent emails I could find from my mom and sisters; watching Caribbean music videos by Vibz Kartel and Demarco on You Tube; explaining the Sh*t Girls Say video phenomenon; listening to songs on iTunes; showing him things I liked on Pinterest; and honestly, I cannot even remember what else, but there was a lot of stalling.

Finally, Charlie was ready to go, standing outside on the porch with his backpack on, ready to head to the library  fifteen minutes before he was supposed to arrive at his party, which meant me pretending to look for shoes I couldn’t find and standing in the bathroom for at least five minutes with the water running, calling friends and asking them to call Charlie and stall him.  When his friend’s called to stall him, Charlie’s phone rang and he pressed “ignore” and put his phone back in his pocket… talk about focus!

Finally, when I couldn’t stall him any longer, we walked towards campus together, and at that point I was heading to the ice cream shop to eat ice cream alone since Charlie was adamant on getting back to the library.  Luckily, we walked by at the perfect time, just as our friends were walking up the street carrying the cupcakes.  Needless to say Charlie was very, very surprised, especially since his birthday was a few weeks past.  Everyone yelled surprise, and we had a good laugh about how difficult it was to get Charlie to his own surprise party.  We all hung out for thirty minutes or so and enjoyed the cupcakes, and then Charlie headed off to the library.

It was a good birthday, hilarious, and short but sweet!   Happy belated birthday Charlie!