Ethan sent me some of his favorite pictures from his recent trip to Texas with Mikey. And I am sharing them here. He has so much fun getting these amazing shots!
Here are some more quick snapshots of life with the Cleve Crew.
We’ll start with some pics of the boys opening unexpected packages of items for camping and their bags. They were very excited!
The boys wanted to do some sparring with Mike (and each other) the other night. I only managed to snap a few pictures as I was too busy laughing. I’ve never seen Mike be bested so badly in any sport he’s played. It was so much fun! He was a good sport. Micah kept yelling at him, “The best defense is a good offense. Show me your face. Throw some punches.”
We were able to do some schooling on the road (over at the reservoir) last week because our piano was being tuned. No one wanted to stick around to listen to that. It was lots of fun being outside for the morning of studies.
- Ethan played in church again recently (you can always watch on our church’s YouTube channel, if ever you’re interested). Micah and I hung out in the church library during his practice. 2. We often have two neighborhood friends over at our house for football or scooter-riding. It’s lots of fun watching from the windows. =) 3. We still enjoy playing games when we’re all home. We got in a game of Splendor one night and Parcheesi another night. 4. And we spend a lot of time looking at books together, too. 5. Our crew did our family presentation at CC last Monday – we chose to tell our favorites of various categories (i.e. favorite bird, game, sport, book, hobby). And 6. The boys began piano lessons again and, therefore, I snuck away on one of my favorite quick walks in Denver.
And, finally, here are some shots from homeschool life. 1. Ethan waiting to do Latin with me. 2. Discussions at Dawn. 3 and 4. Ethan working on a presentation about Copernicus for class with his brother acting as Copernicus. 5. Study Hall with Ethan’s class – we watched The Phantom Tollbooth together since we had read and discussed it together for the past couple of weeks.
Micah’s been trying to knock off a bunch of the things listed in The 50 Dangerous Things You Should Let Your Kid Do. He made a home-made bomb and also licked a 9-volt battery:
We’ve had time with friends, workouts with Dad, LOTS of rain, and Mikey hiked four 14ers in a day with a co-worker. (Said co-worker later came over for some ping pong.) We also have had a little bit of produce from our garden and Micah LOVES eating chicken off the bone. It feels very medieval to him and he gets very excited when I make it.
And lastly, after 3 hours of adult classes at Krav Maga (during the first one he had to sit out for a bit because, like me, his blood pressure drops drastically), E underwent a 3 and a half minute shark tank drill. This means he is attacked by various people while at the point of exhaustion and he has to defend himself with everything he’s learned over the past year. It was very intense and he was successful! He has now earned his blue belt. Here’s the video of his shark tank. Be warned, there are lots of pretend weapons in it. No one is hurt during its filming. =)
We’ve had a pretty delightful first couple of weeks back to school.
Ethan is in Challenge B this year (which translates to 8th grade). Micah is in 5th (it’s his second to last year in Foundations/Essentials). Both are still thriving in the homeschool life, so we’ve signed up for another year of it. This is already our 8th year of homeschool. Crazy.
As you may recall, we rearranged our home quite a bit so now most of our schooling is done downstairs. We’re loving it. (Well, in truth, Micah is anxious for my folks to get here so that we can figure out how to get a curtain to separate the Lego from his desk area. This is a distraction for him and he’s not pleased with it.)
We started something new for our mornings. Ethan dubbed it, “Discussions at Dawn” and they currently feature a joint read-aloud, some devotional time and some quiet time. They will eventually also include more fine arts – poetry, Shakespeare, famous artists or composers (depending on what they are studying elsewhere in their curriculum this will shift). We each have a notebook for pictures or questions or words that need defining. Anyway, it’s been delightful to have a little part of our day all together again.
Ethan took first day of school pics for our community again this year.
I tried to make time with Micah special while Ethan was down in Texas with his dad. We both tend to really enjoy time at home, so it felt hard to make that feel special, but he told me many times that he was having a great time. He did say at one point, “this weekend is taking such a long time…in a really good way.” So, hopefully he meant that last part. =D We enjoyed his favorite meals, did a workout together, and went to the Farmer’s Market after church. And on Saturday we spent a good chunk of time down at the park for our Foundations/Essentials Kick-Off picnic in the park with a bunch of friends. I didn’t take a lot of pictures because selfies are not my thing and I try not to have my phone by me much when hanging one on one.
I’ll include these pictures from opening birthday presents one morning this week because they feature Micah and me. =)
E and Mike headed to Texas for his yearly one-on-one adventure. The aim was to do some great birding in the southern part of Texas whenever lots of the birds would be there and to enjoy time together. They had a lot of success, despite the many bugs (see photos below of trails that were literally covered in spiders) and high humidity. I’ll try to get him to send me a few of his favorite pictures to include in the next post. For now, here are some shots Mike took.
They had a great time together and got home right in time to start the school year on Monday. =D
A couple days (or maybe 24 hours?) after we got home from Brainard (enough time to do a little laundry and put away sleeping bags…), we boarded a plane (along with cousins, auntie, and uncle) to Pittsburgh for my cousin, Isaac’s, wedding. Isaac was a baby when I first moved out to Colorado to go to college. I guess some time has passed…
Anyway, the wedding fell over Ivan’s birthday and my own, so we got to do some celebrating with family for both. We spent the day before the wedding exploring Pittsburgh – going to a children’s museum, lunch, parks, doing the incline, having delicious milkshakes and then enjoying the Point State Park.
Saturday was filled with the wedding (a beautiful morning wedding):
My favorite part was probably hearing cousin Matthew sing while Mel and Isaac danced the mother-son dance. That kid is so talented.
And that evening there was an after-party of pizza and games at a hotel lobby for all of those who had traveled from afar to be there:
Sunday was my birthday and the day everyone headed home. We opted to have brunch at a famous Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives diner (HUGE thank you to Lauren for saving our place in line in the heat!) and then went our separate ways. We spent some time at the aviary and at the botanic gardens and then enjoyed a delicious taco dinner before heading to the airport. Much drama ensued at the airport, but we did eventually get home sometime after midnight.
This means “random” and is what my little nephew always says when he plays a random card while playing games. This post is going to be a quick random one since I forgot to post this earlier.
We spent some time on Chatfield Reservoir with friends recently. Such a good time. Mike and Micah continue to do some workouts together. I do mine solo. And Ethan occasionally does his own thing, too, but less frequently. E and I worked together to build his desk for the upcoming school year. We are pretty proud of ourselves. Auntie Mel brought over some watermelon juice for us to make sorbet. We enjoyed it during one of our family meetings. Ethan on a birding outing with me. Micah making snacks for others to enjoy and then playing with a whole bunch of board game pieces all together.
The boys also attended piano camp with their piano teacher and some friends who used to do CC at our community. They absolutely loved it. Watch their video here from their last day at camp.
Every January we attempt to book a campsite at Brainard Lake the following July (around here you have to book six months in advance for some of the better spots). After many attempts, Mike was finally able to secure a couple nights! Later we found out that our friends had also booked nights at a nearby site which overlapped us. It was so much fun to get to do some camping with them.
Life at our site:
Hiking to Blue Lake (which included a jump by all except me into the frigid waters):