We are on our Christmas break now and boy, are we ever grateful for the time off. We have some very loose plans for our 4 week break.
- an outing with the girls (or two or three)
- making a craft (or crafts) with the girls
- getting our family picture taken with our 8 1/2 month old "new" addition
- baking some cookies
- catching up on some correspondence
- relaxing and reflecting
An important part of this vacation is giving our brains a little break from Tagalog in hopes that when we go back to it we will be able to absorb more. My brain is like a sponge. I didn't really know that before learning a second language and culture. Hands down this is the most difficult thing I've ever tried to learn. You can't just learn a few facts and regurgitate them at the appropriate time. A language is dynamic; every situation calls for a quick (or not so quick) mental assessment of what is the appropriate utterance at that particular moment. Most of the time I get it wrong.
So, since I'm fairly new at the second language thing I'm finally starting to see some patterns. My brain gets saturated after about 8 weeks or so of study and if I don't get a break then I have a very short attention span and I don't really absorb much of the new info I receive. In fact, it almost seems like I go backwards in comprehension and ability to speak.
Our last break was in August. It was wonderful and after we came back I was so fired up and ready to go. I had sort of hoped to take a break between August and Christmas but with Dennis' trip and Button ending up in the hospital I guess I just decided I couldn't afford to take any more time off. The bottom line is that I needed a break about 8 weeks ago but I didn't take one... should I be surprised that I have the attention span of a bird? No. It is not noble to not take a break.
So, we are happy for this Christmas break and I am going to go wrap a few presents with Winnie right now. Hooray.