Finishing up March

March brought with it the arrival of Mallory, our beloved Mallard. We believe she’s got a new fella’ with her this spring, but we’re still calling him Fred. She’s back to her usual antics of peaking in the window and waiting on our step for corn and cooked rice. They have both ventured to the back on a couple of occasions.

March has also brought warmer weather – the kind where we spend hours outside: working, schooling, biking, playing ping pong, and going for hikes. Mike took the boys biking to Cherry Creek Reservoir recently while I did some CC work for next year.

The weekend before Easter we headed out to Upper Cheesman Reservoir for a really neat hike. I think it was about 4 miles total (out and back). Mike said it was one of his favorite hikes!

Other note-worthy events that I captured on camera from this month included another round of “cat business” (AKA watching the cats for our neighbors) – I snapped this picture of them coming home chatting, a birthday FaceTime with Grandpa Russ, Micah and Grandma having a business meeting about making cards, watching a Duck-umentary (twice), and art at the co

And, of course, some pictures from school life these days. The boys wrote a story together to do as their virtual presentation with our slightly broader CC community. It was hilarious.

We are down to only 2 weeks of backyard CC and we’re all kind of bummed to have it end. It’s been such a blast! Ethan painted a hummingbird, in the style (sort of) of Georgia O’Keeffe. The boys worked on vocabulary stories where they took a well-known fairy tale and re-wrote it using as many vocabulary words from Essentials as possible. I believe they both ended up using more than 50 of their vocabulary words. I snapped a picture of the words we were still trying to sneak into their stories with each boy so that I would remember which words needed to go with which boy. =D

And the last two pictures were to remind me to mention in passing that E and Micah do school in very different ways. Micah likes to include snacks and a stuffed animal and also always turns math problems into artistic masterpieces. =P

Weekend Hike

Mikey found us another awesome hike this past weekend. This time we drove up to the Boulder area and hiked “Benjamin’s Loop”. It was about 5 miles long and very lovely. The path had lots of snow in the parts in the shadows and was very dry and warm in the sunshine-y places. We really enjoyed this one.

Afterwards we stopped by downtown Golden to enjoy açaí bowls by the creek. I understand the water was very cold. =D

Life Lately

We reached some Covid-related milestones recently, as I’m sure have many of you. We’ve officially spent a full year without any in-person time with Grandma Cleve or my parents. This past Friday marked the year anniversary of when I flew home from Florida with the boys. Mike also has now gone over 365 days without getting on a plane for the first time in…18 years!! We snapped a picture of Mike to remember that day. =D And I reached a full year of reading for at least 10 minutes a day! (this is a big deal for me; I’m well-aware that many of you have such beautiful reading lives that this is nothing…but it’s a habit I’ve been working to build and have enjoyed every minute of it!)

We also celebrated some holidays – Pi day (with chicken potpie and chocolate pie) and St. Patty’s Day (with corned beef and cabbage):

Just days before a big winter storm, we had a gorgeous backyard community day with CC. We’re busy painting like the great artists right now and that’s been extra fun. Below you’ll see Micah’s version of a Picasso painting. Ethan was pretty bummed to have to cut up his beautiful bird to make it appear more like a Picasso piece.

I took Ethan out for a quick birding adventure after dropping off some food to folks from church before the snow arrived.

And then the storm hit us! We got almost 2 feet of snow! Lots of fun!

Other happenings as of late include celebrating Salina’s birthday via Zoom and her subsequent thank you note (SO funny!), writing on our gratitude frames, working on March madness brackets, enjoying the sunshine, and another tiny snowstorm:

And lastly some pictures of school today (Ethan is making the CC yearbook for us this year, with help from yours truly):

Colorado Weather

I’m sure I’ve mentioned my love of Colorado weather a number of times. I hope it doesn’t get obnoxious! I’m just so thankful to live in a place that brings such fun turns in the weather. Over the past few weeks, we’ve had a few snowstorms which brought in varying amounts of snow. We’ve also had temps in the high 60s. This post will feature a good mix of both extremes and our adventures in both.

The boys built a new snow fort on the deck during one snowstorm:

We enjoyed a birding expedition at Cherry Creek Reservoir a day or two after that snow:

Not long after that we got a good foot of snow and took the morning off of school to go sledding a bunch. Daddio surprised us and joined for a bit of it!

Over one of the recent weekends we hiked in Roxborough Park. What a gorgeous park! This is one that I’ve done a bunch, but it always amazes me. I even went there when I was coming out to visit my Aunt and Uncle during my high school years.

On Friday after school was done, I took the boys on a bike ride to the ponds. Mike had been skiing – a fantastic COVID-safety-approved activity if you don’t ever have to go to the bathroom! (this is not for me or the boys!) HAHA! And this past Saturday was beautiful. Mike took the boys to City Park in the morning so that I could clean without distraction. Win win!

Saturday afternoon we headed to Mount Zion in Golden and did a short, but gorgeous hike with beautiful views.

And in the meantime, we’ve still managed to meet with our CC community in the backyard and have had such beautiful weather for it! We’re thrilled to be down to only 5 weeks of CC and all hope to spend some time together just for fun when the year is done. =D

Ethan managed to do some other schooling outdoors this week, too. I snuck a couple of pictures from the window of the house:

We also got some rain this past week and Micah offered to join me on a late night walk in the rain. I hadn’t gotten my walk in earlier in the day, so the two of us walked with head lamps and really enjoyed our time together. In fact, Micah said, “Mom, I’m taking a mental picture of this so I don’t forget it.” He then told me that he had also taken a mental picture earlier when we zoomed for Salina’s 3rd birthday and she and Grandma walked off with their little matching dusting mitts to do some dusting.

This weekend marked the first time I was able to sit outside to read in the morning and our first time using the ping pong table in quite a while. Yay!

More updates unrelated to CO weather to come. =P

Life Lately

Here are some shots depicting homeschool life (Ethan is often up early and likes to start on school work right away – I caught him with his book light one morning around 6:15 already at work in the kitchen; Ethan reading out loud during the 10-min a day challenge in January; we teach the timeline from CC to my parents and Aunt Sal and afterwards Micah often likes to play a little piano for them; editing, diagramming, promises, promises curriculum from church; and Micah’s first chapter book read solo!).

Backyard CC Community (including one morning when we did the Essentials portion virtually to avoid those cold days):

Other fun happenings from over the last month include colorku/sudoku while listening to books, Micah working on an art project from Uncle Ger, finishing The Doldrums with Grandma via Zoom, a final Packer picnic for the year, a new joint ‘office’ for the boys, fun in the snow fort, lots of snuggles and book time, some rousing games of Throw Throw Burrito, and boys playing piano (Ethan looks like a teenager to me when he’s composing music on the computer by the piano!).