Sorry for the long pause. Dad Wood has been visiting this last week, which seriously cut into computer time. Among other things my computer is in the guest room, and when you do most of your blogging at night, and your guest goes to bed at 9pm...
That said, we had a good visit. Dad Wood seems to be coping with Ma's death about as well as could be expected. Getting out of the overly empty house seemed to be good for him, and we'll probably have him up here again after the holidays (we're going down to him for Thanksgiving).
Sensei and I had a meeting of minds, and my brown belt (ni-kyu) test is scheduled for Nov. 30th - I.e. Friday the week after Thanksgiving. I'm practicing my (not-so) little butt off. Candle-punching is still my worst skill, and the only one that has me truly worried. Practicing at home I'm getting the candle out 50-70% of the time with my right hand, but only about one time in six with the left. Which if I only get two shots per hand is not good odds. My problem seems to be two-fold. First is my general slowness/lack of snap. With poor snap, my punch has to be right on top of the candle to put it out. This combines poorly with my tendancy to misjudge the amount of hip twist when checking my distance. Otherwise known as I tend to tap the candle, which is an automatic fail, even if the flame goes out. If I can improve the snap, I won't have to judge my distance so finely. If I can judge my distance right, my lack of snap won't matter quite so much. Practice, practice, practice. It's all I can do right now.
We also had a meeting with the Special Education Team at the school, this time about Robbie, instead of Aaron. It was an interesting (and funny) meeting. Full of comments that were polite versions of "If he's paying attention 18% of the time (the official count), but heads the class, why is the problem with his attention, rather than with the level of the material?" In the end they agreed with us, and Robbie is now officially in the Gifted & Talented program, rather than Special Education. (It helps that his test scores were above average to well-above average nearly across the board) I had the intake interview with the G&T coordinator on Friday. She seems like a very nice lady, and I'm very pleased with the program as outlined. Best of all, the G&T program is done by "cluster" teachers within each grade, and Robbie's teacher is the cluster teacher for 4th grade, so he gets to stay where he is. Woot! Because he seriously loves being in Mr. Julian's class. Actually, Mr. Julian had already started grouping Robbie with the G&T kids for pull-out work before we even had this meeting - so yay for him.
Also in Robbie school news, he's just been selected for the Academic Competition Team. He is seriously excited about this. Competition, plus science and math, all in one place. Robbie has been competitive from the get-go, and this should be right up his alley. Plus both this and being with the G&T kids may help him develop some more friends.
Nothing new with Aaron school-wise. But in Taekwondo, he should be testing for his yellow stripe next month. I hope the test is scheduled for sometime when we're in town, since we're headed down Mississippi way on the 21st. If he misses, he'll have to wait until January since the TKD people schedule mass tests once a month, rather than our individual tests, scheduled at the testee's convenience.
Oh - and it looks like I'll have an audience for my test. At least three people from the TKD side have asked for the date, and said they'd make a point to be there. Eeek?