It’s his first time in a traditional school where students are given numerical grades and often compete with each other.  We didn’t expect too much from him in terms of scholastic achievements because we anticipate a tough adjustment period for a child who was never exposed to graded recitations, quizzes, long tests, quarterly final exams and contests.  Based on the teachings of Maria Montessori, what he understands is competing with himself that meant continual self-improvement without comparing himself with others. Oh boy! We underestimated him.  His grades for the first quarter are all excellent. 

Probably, it helped that we give him the support parents can provide at home and equip him whatever he might need but the moment he rides the school service, he faces his battle on his own. 

Last week, he handed me a letter from school that says he will represent their class in a spelling competition because apparently he topped the elimination portion.  When he asked what and how to review for spelling, I just told him to continue what he loves doing…READING.  He is a voracious reader and loves spending time in the library.  That’s how he encounters lots of words, understands their meaning and be familiar with their spelling.  Unfortunately, Papa Sez and I can’t make it to watch the contest proper so we just coached him to stay focused, listen carefully to the Quiz Master and write legibly.  We assured him that WIN or LOSE we LOVE him just the same. 

Guess what? He came home with a gold medal! Note that his hands were covering his ears as he relays the good news for he knows that I will scream in excitement.  He’s right I really did scream so loud, lol.  I sincerely apologized for not being able to witness the momentous event but told him I was intently praying for him.  He was astonished to hear that as he recounted feeling my presence during the contest.  I had goose bumps, was teary-eyed, grateful for my son’s achievement and so blessed to feel God’s presence.

But then, I realized that the idea of competition had not completely sink in when he asked “Mama, I misspelled some words, why did I win the gold medal?” “Maybe because the other contestants had more misspelled words than what you had…you don’t always need a perfect score to win” was my wild guess. Competitive or not, he is up for the next level of spelling competition come February 2011. CHEERS FOR LEON!!!
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About Us (circa 2009)

Our journey led us to this place. A little more than 10 years ago we began our journey as husband and wife. Three years later, we found ourselves with two bundles of joy- a daughter and then a son. They're the children we've dreamed of having.

About five years since the birth of our son, an unexpected gift came- a younger brother to our school-age kids. And soon enough, a baby girl arrived to round the family membership.

Brave was a term used by a friend to describe us. Challenging... and loving it -- yeah, this journey is not for the faint of heart.