Category: Michelle In Hong Kong

The Ideal
  • The kids get their homework done. 
  • Between homework and 8:30pm, they play video games (in direct violation of the "no games on school nights" rule as incentive to finish quickly). 
  • They calm down to bedtime snacks between 8:30 and 9pm. 
  • They go to bed — lights out by 9:15.
The Compromise
  • The kids get their homework done, too slowly for gaming.
  • Calm down with bedtime snacks between 8:30 and 9pm.
  • They go to bed — lights out by 9:15.


  • The kids get their homework done… sometime.
  • They go to bed… eventually.


  • The kids start homework at 7pm (older two only — youngest is in PreK)
  • Youngest demands Superman movie.  I think… OK, I’m free to help with homework.
  • Youngest runs around the house, yelling joyfully and demanding that I watch Superman with him.
  • Oldest and middle children both jabbering for help with homework at the same time.  I can’t hear myself think, but the youngest has raised both the volume and velocity of his yelling/running.
  • Help middle child with spelling sentences.  Oldest yells along with youngest, distracting middle one all along.
  • Help oldest with math homework.  He wants to discuss philosophies about what’s really better… spending less per ounce of cereal for the 24oz box or not ending up with four extra ounces at a lower overall price when you didn’t need the extra four ounces to begin with.
    "Is it really cheaper, Dad?  You spend more per ounce on the 20oz box, but you still spend more money on the 24oz box."
    "The question asked, ‘Which is the better buy?’, not ‘Which is cheaper overall?’."
    "Well, if you ask me, the better buy is NOT wasting money on four ounces you’ll never use."
    "Who said you’d never use it?"
    "Well, if you needed more than 20oz, why would that box even be there?  You wouldn’t buy a 20oz box if you needed 22 or 24 ounces!"
  • Youngest is silent and absent.  Panic ensues.  Panic justified… the "Cadoo" games given to them in their Burger King meals are scattered ALL over the living room (yeah, I took ‘em to Burger King — mistake number 1!).
  • We get math done… "But Dad, I have vocabulary prompt!"  Dad takes the Lord’s name in vain — on the inside.  "Vocabulary prompt" is writing a story based on a new vocabulary word and takes him FOR-EVER!  This kid is RANK and needs a shower desperately before bed!
  • It’s now 9:30, and no homework is completely finished.  I get out the video camera and make the video in the Media Player.  It was to be a heartfelt video.  The kids spontaneously come up with their own surprise ending.
  • Homework done, showers taken, snacks administered, and the kids are in bed… 10:15pm.  Morning wake-up call is going to be fun!

Hope you enjoy the movie, Dear.  And everyone else, too.  No, no, Hon… I don’t mean for you to enjoy everyone else.  I want them to enjoy the movie too.  What’s this?  Oh yeah… Joe’s (my neighbor) bottle opener is still hanging off my keychain from the last time he house-sat.  I think I can find a use for this.

Edit:  Sorry… you missed the movie.  It was a limited engagement.  Some new Media Player entertainment will appear shortly, I’m certain.

Here’s an e-mail from Michelle.  It came with 8 pictures, which are in the photo album.  Sounds like she’s having a good time out there!
Hi everyone,
Here are some pictures I took at Hong Kong Disneyland today.  It was cloudy and cool so I want to take some more on a sunnier day, but it gives you a good idea of what the park looks like (very much like Disneyland in California).
We had a fun time today and it felt good to walk around after the long flight.  We are really busy tomorrow with meetings at Disneyland and in downtown Hong Kong, so we took the chance to go today.
It is very nice here and we have to keep reminding ourselves that we are in China (not in California).