Today has been a great day! My conversation class was filled to overflowing this morning and we had to move to another classroom. I planned some activities to get them started talking, and it seemed to work very well. I had some returning students and many new ones. We made introductions, conducted interviews among the students, had group discussions and brainstorming sessions, and then they presented what they had discovered about one another through the interviews and presented their discussion topics and talked about their passions. They seemed to enjoy the class and managed to get over their fear of making mistakes while speaking. That's a major hurdle for many of them. So many are afraid of mis-speaking and fade into the background of their classes, so by the time they get to me, in advanced English, they are still speaking on a very basic level. So we work on speaking with confidence, expanding the vocabulary a little more each class, and creating conversation on the fly, without needing to write every sentence down before speaking.
Celeste and I have also had a good day. We've been at the park and out walking most of the afternoon. We came back so she could catch a nap and I could catch up on housework and sit down for a few minutes. We bought a DVD movie and a bag of chips to share...the chips were gone long before the movie ended, but Celeste seemed to enjoy watching "Arthur and the Minimoys" as much as I did. Some days I wonder if we are the right family for Celeste. She is rarely satisfied with walks and runs in the park, and often her energy and personality get her into trouble outside as well as around the house. She's so gregarious and believes that every person she meets is just waiting for her to leap on them and smother them with kisses. Some of them are, and invite her to jump on them. Others are terrified of the big feet and teeth that they see coming at their faces. She also thinks that every used Kleenex, plastic bag and fallen leaf is placed on the sidewalk just for her. In the house, she feels that she needs to be with us at all times, to the exclusion of going outside to pee. That seems to be taking things to the extreme, in my opinion, but I admit that I don't know everything there is to know about the Siberian psyche.
I've decided, too, that I will only knit with gray and light-colored yarns until Celeste is finished shedding. Heh, it may well be that I spend the next several years knitting only light-colors and grays...I'm not sure how the shedding pattern goes for Siberians. My Basset hound sheds about every six weeks all year round and adores being brushed. Celeste has been shedding for the last 2 months and there's no sign of it letting up yet. It's not coming out in clumps like she might be shedding her winter coat, just dropping about a handful a day throughout the apartment. And she seems to detest being brushed, even with a soft-bristled brush, so she makes it a challenge to keep her groomed and minimize the dog hair that lands on the floor. Come to think of it, Celeste seems make most things a challenge.