We get a lot of questions about what our life here in the DR is like. I posted a question on Facebook the other day asking people for questions that they would like to have answered for a blog post. Well…here are some of them:
Yes, they are homeschooled in the afternoons for their American studies. In the eyes of the US, my kids are enrolled in Homelife Academy. However, in the mornings from 8:00-12:00, they attend the Dominican private school, that our church helped build. The school only goes up to 8th grade. Lexie is in 7th so she will be there for one more year. At Homelife Academy, Lauren is a 9th grader. She decided that she didn’t want to be the only American girl at the Dominican high school so she stayed at the private school in 8th grade this year. They attend the DR school for social interaction and to improve their Spanish. They are technically getting 4 hours of Spanish a day so you can imagine how incredibly fluent they are. Next year, Lauren will be exclusively homeschooled and will be an assistant librarian with me.
Dawn asked: “What are some of the things you must do differently there? Such as laundry, and other daily task.”
Chores here take much longer than in the states. Above is a picture of a Dominican washing machine. It’s called a semi-automatic washing machine. This is the way it works: Fill up the left basin with water and add your detergent. Insert you clothes and let them wash. Then remove the clothes and place them in the basin to the right. This will spin the water out of them. While they are spinning, drain the water in the left basin. Then fill it up again with water and add fabric softener. Remove the clothes when they are done spinning and place them into the left basin. When they are done, then place them back into the spin basin. Then hang them on the line. Repeat the process for EACH LOAD OF CLOTHES! Exhausting, yes…but Mo helps with this and we have a washing machine. Many of our neighbors do not. They either put their clothes in a bucket to wash and rinse using water from an outdoor faucet, or they go to the river to wash their clothes.
We have no air conditioning so our windows and doors are always open. Because of this, our house is ALWAYS dusty. I could literally dust and mop twice a day but only do it once a day, in the mornings. So, every single morning, I dust, sweep, and mop our house…every inch of it. I don’t know if most of you do that in the states but I didn’t. Dusting got done once a week, and I mopped a few times a week as needed.
Cooking…oh, cooking! Most everyone that knows me knows that I loathe cooking and am not very good at it! I tend to forget that I am doing it, get distracted by something else, and burn most everything that I cook. Yeah, whatever! We don’t have fast food restaurants near us…actually we don’t have any restaurants within a 20 minute drive from us. We used to have a pizza restaurant about 10-15 minutes away but that was short lived. It was open about 4 months! I think that my family and Kristi and Keely were it’s only customers. That being said, we have to cooked most all meals (unless we go to the Capital). This has been quite trying for me to learn. Luckily, Mo is a wonderful cook and is like the MacGyver of the kitchen. Once again, many of you in the states do this every single day for every single meal but I didn’t. We ate out several times a week in the states.
I have mentioned before that women are not called “housewives” here. They are called “amante de la casa” which translates to “Lover of the home”. I have to agree that the process of doing chores here creates a love for your home. I have finally found joy in all of this! :O)
Michele asked: “Here’s one for you, how did you find such a great hair stylist down there? Your new “do” looks fantastic! So bouncy and curly!”
We found a salon at a mall in Santo Domingo. This lady is Dominican and is a magician! I LOVE the haircut but have yet to be able to style it to be “bouncy and curly” on my own. I am going back to her this week to try to figure out what kind of magic she used! Oh, and thanks so much for the compliment!
These are only a few of the questions. I will be posting others in a future post. If you have questions, comment below!