7:30 a.m. - Rusty and Alex are awake. Stephen is still sleeping. We have breakfast and I help Alex get ready to go. Then, I take a shower.
8:25 a.m. - Rusty and Alex leave for school. Stephen is still asleep. I guess he is catching up on his rest since he didn't get a good nap yesterday and went to bed so late last night.
8:45 a.m. - Stephen is finally awake. I get him up and feed him breakfast.
9:00 a.m. - Ana comes over. Stephen is still in his high chair. He cries when he sees Ana because he knows I'm about to leave. He is still adjusting to this new routine. It is only the second week she has been keeping him since last April. I grab my stuff and leave for school.
9:30 a.m. - Time for class. Rusty comes in a little late because he stopped in at the café next door and bought a few pastries. I love the croissants filled with Nutella, and the pasteis de nata (custard tarts). He also bought me a cheese sandwich for later since I don't get to eat lunch until late.
11:30 a.m. - Class is over. Rusty heads home and I head up to the mall again. I enjoy this time to just sit and work on homework without any other distractions. I eat my sandwich and do my homework. I've also been using this time to read an autobiography by T. Ernest Wilson called Angola Beloved. It's an interesting read; missionary autobiographies are so inspiring.
12:50 p.m. - I walk over to get Alex, and then we walk back together. The bus is actually on time today (wonder of wonders), so we will get home in time for Rusty to get to his class.
1:30 p.m. - We arrive home, but Rusty's class has been cancelled again, so he won't be going anywhere this afternoon. Stephen is already down for his nap. I warm myself up something to eat and sit down to relax and talk with Rusty for a little bit before we start on our homework. Usually, while we do our homework, Alex plays with his toys or watches TV. Sometimes, he likes to do "homework" with us, which means that he practices writing on one of his wipe-off books or colors.
2:15 p.m. - Stephen is awake. He sure didn't sleep long today. We try to keep working, but it's difficult when you have to get up every 30 seconds to resolve a sibling dispute or refill a sippy cup or a snack bowl. Sometimes, I feel like a human vending machine! I do some dishes and hang out some laundry. Alex blows bubbles on the balcony for awhile.
4:45 p.m. - We decide to take a walk to the park and the butcher shop. Our local butcher has been closed down for a remodel since we got back from the States, but they are open again, and we want to see what it looks like inside. The boys have fun running around on the grass at the park and playing on the exercise equipment. On our way to the butcher, we stop in at a "Payshop" and Rusty pays our phone and Internet bill. This is how we pay all our bills in Portugal -- in cash at one of these places.
The park near our house.
There is no playground, but Alex loves to play on the exercise equipment
A short ways from the park is Didu, our local bakery and pastry shop
There is a pharmacy next door to Didu (green sign), and the Payshop is in this same complex. This building has shops on the ground floor with apartments on the floors above, very common in Europe.
Our local post office and bank are also within walking distance of our apartment.
Small pond with a fountain just down the hill from our apartment. We walk past this pond on our way to and from the bus stop every day. The boys like to watch the family of ducks that swims in the pond, and sometimes we bring old bread to feed them.
5:15 p.m. - The remodeled butcher shop is very nice inside. All the meat is displayed in a glass case. There is also a deli section where you can buy lunch meats and cheeses, and a small fresh fruits and vegetables section. They remember us and are glad to see us. I ask for two whole chickens and some ground beef, but they are out of ground beef at the moment, so he gives us hamburger patties instead. We also get a rabbit for dinner tonight. I ask him to cut it up for me, and he asks if I want the head and the giblets (yes, it was a whole, skinned rabbit)! We get a few veggies, pay for our purchases, and walk home.
Our local butcher, on the opposite corner from Didu
5:45 p.m. - Rusty bathes the kids while I start on dinner -- rabbit stew with coconut cream. I also start on the dishes while waiting for the stew to cook.
7:00 p.m. - We sit down to eat. After dinner, I finish up the dishes, then help the boys finish getting ready for bed.
8:15 p.m. - The boys are in bed early tonight. Now, we can finally finish our homework! Wednesday nights are also good for catching up on emails, housework, or any number of other projects. I spend some time putting the finishing touches on our family newsletter since that needs to go out by the end of the week. Rusty is reading up on Morocco and making plans for our trip there next week.
11:00 p.m. - Bedtime