World AIDS Day at the NASDAQ

For World AIDS Day 2017, my colleague and I attended the NASDAQ Opening Ceremony, which was followed by a panel discussion on Global Leadership in HIV Testing. The event was hosted by OraSure Technologies and its global partners in the fight against HIV and AIDS - UNITAID, PSI, and UCLA.   Photos below are all courtesy of the NASDAQ:         … [Read more...]

Easy indoor vermicomposting in NYC

My family and I just moved to NYC, and don't have the outdoor space we had while living in Asia. So at first we just took food scraps to drop off when we shopped at the Greenmarket - New York City's farmers' market network - which is where we met Pamela, our market compost coordinator. … [Read more...]

to homeschool or not in nyc?

Catching up on some long-overdue reading about homeschooling. Had no idea how big a movement it is, but I'm not surprised. From The Profound Ways that Schooling Harms Society, perfectly capturing why more parents are taking this route: ...interesting not only to look at what your children are required to learn in school, but at what they are not required to learn.  While your kids are very busy toiling over algebra and chemistry, international trade agreements are being forged and currencies are being manipulated by entities that most Americans don’t even know the names of, much less the inner workings of.  Kids are compelled to solve quadratic equations and write essays on Shakespeare, and they graduate without understanding how to … [Read more...]

maintaining a multilingual environment if we move back to the US

One of the things I appreciate about expatriate life is its cultural exposure, especially in a city like Phnom Penh. The kids are exposed to so many languages on any given day. Contrast this with my early years back home. I only realized after many years in the system that a multilingual upbringing wasn't normal in the US (I went to school in Spanish Harlem). I'm the only one in my family who knew just two languages. That was bad enough - I certainly didn't want my kids limited to English. So we put our little boy in a French immersion program. His teacher is a creative, gentle Frenchwoman. He's been in her class  just four weeks and already he's counting, singing and carrying on conversations in French. Their absorptive capacity at this … [Read more...]

missing Christmas in New York

Holidays in the tropics just isn't the same as Christmas in New York. This year my annual leave happened to fall short of letting us stay in the city for Christmas, but at least I got to catch most of the holiday frenzy. It's the time of year to enjoy the tourist areas of Rockefeller and Fifth Avenue, normally avoided like the plague the rest of the year. I especially love the creative window displays where department stores try to outdo each other-- including their own past displays-- every year. Bergdorf Goodman on Fifth never disappoints, and it's a dense visual feast this year. Merry Christmas everyone! … [Read more...]