Click here for the Paris journal from 2016.
Thu, 12/31/15. Aquarium.

I got an email from the Austrian consulate today that Max and Gems are getting their Austrian citizenship! Today we went to the Aquarium with Clara and Ewelina. It was not a very big building, but they smartly made it take up several levels so it feels pretty big inside, with lots of little rooms and lots of stuff for kids. Max and Gems especially liked touching the fish and playing tag with Clara, though Max was a little rough and Ewelina had to warn him that if he didn't stop playing rough, Clara wouldn't want to play with him anymore, as she is a little scared of him. The aquarium, like all parks in France, loves the rules. Check out all the ridiculous rules by the place where you can touch the fish, in the 2nd photo above. Afterwards we got new trottinettes at Decathlon, and then trottinetted home, stopping at Diner on the way home for dinner and milkshakes.
I have a bunch of new years resolutions. I want to lose weight, go to sleep earlier, exercise more, and floss every day. I also want to wean the kids off of their sugar addiction, do more art appreciation with them, and teach them more math and reading. I want to finish teaching Max and Gems how to cube. I am also thinking when we get back to LA it may be a good idea for our whole family to learn some new sport, like maybe rock climbing? Max and Gemma definitely seem like they'd be into it, and I think Jean and I might enjoy giving it a shot too. Also, I think I'm gonna organize this blog by month or maybe even week, since it's getting lengthy and takes a long time to load now. Happy New Year's Eve!

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Wed, 12/30/15. Thievery.

Today Max and Gems did another worskhop for kids at the Louvre. Just getting into the Louvre was tough, as it was unbelievably crowded. The line to get in might have been the longest line I've ever seen in my life. In general, everything in Paris seems to be obscenely crowded this week, like twice as crowded as it was in the summer. The man in the Louvre museum shop wouldn't let me enter with the trottinettes, so I had to leave them outside with the bicycles, and when we got back from the workshop, the trottinettes were gone. Anyway, the workshop was good, and I followed behind this time and took photos. Max and Gems were shy and hardly spoke, and the guy leading the workshop told me later that they don't speak French at all. However, I did hear Gems chime in one time in French, pointing out dogs in a photo, and I think they understood a lot but were too shy to speak.
I realized in looking over our birth certificates today that in both 1971 and 1973, our mothers had to indicate their name, age, race, and address, whereas our dads had to indicate their name, age, race, and occupation. I thought that was fascinating. I'm not sure what's sadder, how it was unthinkable for a mother to have an occupation, or how the father's address was irrelevant. When Max and Gemma were born, Jean and I only had to indicate our names, birthdates, and birth places. So some things have changed in the last 40 years in California.

Tue, 12/29/15. Bouchette.
Today Gems and Jean took it easy and tried to get better while I took Max to various places, including the market, the Jardin des Plantes, and two post offices to pick up custom marshmallows given to me as a gift by a former student, Wonwoo Choi, since I wrote him letters of recommendation. The marshmallows had pictures of me and my book on them. They looked great and tasted delicious, but even more delicious was a dessert we discovered called a buchette de framboise de bois et speculoos. All 4 of us agreed it's the best dessert we've ever had, and they sell them at the local market for like 2 euros, but only around Christmastime. It has cream and strawberries over a gingerbread crust and is so delicious. Yesterday Jean asked Maxie what he wanted to do today, and gave him various choices including "Pompidou, Pompdon't, Pompiwill, Pompiwon't" and Max said "Uh, Pompithink." We decided on the Jardin des Plantes, where he really enjoyed trotinetting down the hills. I recorded some of his high speed antics. Also here are two original songs recorded by Max and Gemma today.

Mon, 12/28/15. Lazy day.
Gemma was coughing a lot last night, so none of us got much sleep. Today we just tried to rest it off, watching lots of tv. In the afternoon I took Maxie to Parc Lutece for some soccer and racing, but otherwise we just took it easy. Gems loves her pink slippers she got from Santa today, and Max got a little indoor basketball net and ball and seems to like it too.

Click here for the week of 12/27/15.