Butterfly Pavilion

As promised, here are some pictures from our field trip to the Butterfly Pavilion.  We stopped in there before heading to the fair trade conference to see Jen and J.  Both boys held Rosie, the tarantula.  Micah had done so once before, but this was Ethan’s first time. We learned a new fact – no one has ever died because of a tarantula, but there have been 3 known deaths from hamsters.  =D

Micah took most of the pictures (or requested them) this day.  He likes to find beautiful things to capture which makes me smile.

Micah had a beautiful butterfly land on his head!  So fun!

And, lastly, we’re pointing to the fair trade conference from where we were at the Butterfly Pavilion:

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Advent Activities 11-14

Day 11: Christmas craft & Christmas cookies.  We put two together on this day because I had hopes of doing a special advent activity with Aunt Ashley the following day.  Unfortunately, their family was sick so we had to postpone.  So, my day 12 activity was kind of made up on the fly. =)  Thanks, Grandma Cleve, for the train ornaments!

Oh, also, I forgot this trick…if the boys refuse to smile or can’t handle not smiling with huge eyes…tell them to look at each other. So much cuter!

Day 12: drink hot chocolate and read “A Christmas Carol”.  We read a children’s version of the story to prep for day 14….

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Day 13: This was supposed to be banket-making with Auntie Mel, but there was sickness in their house, too.  So, sadly, this was postponed, also.  It ended up being a really rough and exhausting day for me.  I had pretty much cancelled Advent Activities and reached my very own milestone – calling my mom in tears over parenting. =/  BUT, the Lord gave me a wonderful idea that night…to pour grace upon grace on them so that they would have a tangible example of God’s grace and love towards us.  I sent them to bed early because oh.my.word. the day was too long!  But before they fell asleep, I got them out of bed for a late-night drive to see Christmas lights.  The message was loud and clear: you don’t deserve this, but grace wins!  It was a great lesson for me, too…I had to ask myself, how do I respond to His grace and goodness in my life?  Do I obey willingly and thank Him?  Or do I do my own thing and forget to be still and rest in His goodness?

Day 14: Watch “A Christmas Carol” downtown!  We had excellent seats for this fairly scary performance and saw lots of our CC friends there.  Afterwards we got to chat with some of the actors/stage crew people about their roles.  It was really neat!  Also…smiling is hard for us right now. =/

 

Grandpa’s Pictures

And now you can see the visit from my Dad’s point of view. =)

Living History Field Trip:

Making initials:

Homeschooling:

Micah on the butterfly hunt:

Making marshmallow “guns”:

Yardwork / Tree-trimming:

The pretty macarons:

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Thanks for capturing the fun, Dad!  We sure loved having you guys here. =)

Grandpa and Grandma’s Visit

We were so thankful to have Grandpa and Grandma here for a visit this past week!  Mike had been in India for work, so the timing was perfect for me.  Mike was bummed to miss them, but we all agreed that it was a blessing for me to have help and company!  Plus we got to celebrate my Dad’s birthday with him since he was here for it!  They arrived on the same day that Mike left for India and we had the chance to watch the Packers game together and to impress them with piano skills.

On Friday we went to PE+ and then had a field trip to “Living History”.  We’re studying this time period in US history this year in CC, so it was perfect timing!  The boys made candles and candle holders, enjoyed learning about guns and participated in part of a school day for colonial pilgrims, among other things.

Saturday was my Dad’s birthday.  We celebrated by having cinnamon rolls and then leaving him with the boys while my Mom, Aunt and I went to a cooking class for learning to make macarons. =D  That evening we went to my aunt and uncle’s house for dinner.

On Tuesday we had another field trip.  This time we went downtown to watch “The Snowy Day” play.  Naturally we took in the sites a bit and enjoyed some Little Man Ice cream while we were so close. =)

It wouldn’t be a visit from my parents without various projects getting done around the house.  My Mom worked on pillow covers for me and I can’t even begin to describe how excited I am about them! =)  My Dad got rid of the rose bushes and another spiky bush in the backyard (beware – next year I’ll be a real gardener!).  He also put up curtain holder things (there’s probably a real name for this…), helped reinforce the tree fort, and put up a new shelf for the boys’ capes and the letters the boys made with them.  It was a week of random projects and I’m so impressed with how everything turned out!  Thank you, guys!!

In between these projects and runs to the fabric store and Home Depot, we did some school work, read books, and played games.  Ethan went on a couple bike rides with Grandpa.  Micah joined Grandma and me at the yarn store – wearing two different shoes as I am told I did regularly as a child – and took pictures of butterflies with Grandpa in the backyard.  And the boys did a lot of yard work outside, too.

It was great to have you here again, Mom and Dad!  Thanks for coming!!  You’ll see another post of this trip with photos from my Dad. =)

Miller Farm

Our first real field trip of the year was to Miller Farm.  This was such a fun day!  We had lovely weather (a reprieve from the hotter temps!) and a super fun family with whom to enjoy it.  The farm is about an hour away, so we spent most of the trip listening to more of “Anne of Green Gables”.  I literally laughed out loud a bunch of times and I’m getting really eager to show the boys the movies I grew up adoring as a girl.

We spent a few hours there.  Part of the time the kids were playing…

…but most of the time we were riding on a wagon out to various parts of the field to pick our fruit and veggies.  Each person got 4 bags of produce!!  We ended up with lots of corn, peppers, tomatoes and pumpkin.  We also picked some broccoli, beets, potatoes and celery.  I’m certain I’m missing some of the produce we picked, but suffice it to say, we LOVED it!

The field trip didn’t end there…the boys wanted to help me clean and cut veggies when we got home, too!

Thankful for opportunities to take our learning outside and to get dirty!

Weather & Science Day

This was our first year attending the Weather & Science Day at the Rockies stadium.  Tickets included an hour of science experiments and a chance to watch the baseball game.  It was reasonable and I knew the boys would enjoy it.  We took the light rail downtown and walked to the stadium – a fun experience for the boys and it meant I didn’t have to pay for parking downtown! (The second pic is from our trip back home…we were pretty tired by the end of this day!)

We met up with my friend from BSF and another family friend of hers when we got there.  The boys had a great time laughing and eating with them.  She spoiled our boys to their very first cotton candy – which they devoured in 5 seconds!  The Rockies didn’t look too good, but they were playing the Nationals who were scoring like crazy.  I always like to see some good hits and runs in a baseball game, even if it’s not the team I was hoping to win.  Definitely a fun field trip!

Side note: Colorado weather is crazy.  It was very cold in the morning and even was raining before the game started.  But then the sun broke through and even though it was 47 degrees, we were taking off layers and could not cool down unless we sat in the shade for a while (which we did…and then we needed jackets again!).

Wrapping up March, Part 1

March has come and gone…not all that much like the proverbial lion and lamb here in Colorado, though.

Ethan received his first letter from his new pen pal in Chicago.  She has been prayed for almost every day since we learned of her learning English and math facts. =)

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Last weekend, we went downtown to enjoy the city a bit.  We had lunch there and had a fun time looking at books at Tattered Cover – a cool bookstore where Mike and I had a date or two in college.  We also checked out REI and the surrounding area for a while.

We finished the month by enjoying some time with my cousins.  They were heading to Utah for a camping excursion and we had the opportunity to host them a bit before and see them again after the camping.  The boys were absolutely ecstatic to have time with Luke and Anne.  They showered the boys with love and attention and the boys couldn’t get enough of them.

Ethan hit a major milestone with them (sadly, no pictures to prove it) – he went for a 7 mile bike ride while they ran.  They tell me he did not complain at all.  =)  He was pretty proud of himself and thought it was SO cool to get to be out with his two cousins on his own.

Here are some pictures of our time with Luke and Anne – both before their camping and after it.  Having Mel and Joel and their boys in town is extra sweet when we have other family members visiting as it means more time with them.  We do PE plus together and then had lunch and went to the museum.  That evening we were able to watch Caleb in his…Mr. Thunder contest.  It was a blast!  He was very impressive. =D

March wrap up version of homeschooling pictures and videos…

The commutative law for addition and multiplication:

The boys have been busy writing stories for school.  Ethan has written three chapters thus far of a book called, “The Man in the Woods”.  Meanwhile, Micah wrote a short story, too, about some very interesting characters.  Micah has also been playing a variation of Battleship with me for letter and number recognition, as well as following directions. =D He also joined us for one last time of CC.  He did great in my class again and hopes that I’ll be his tutor next year. =)

I just love these pictures of the two of them smiling together.

Also, Micah was dressed like Mr. Popper’s Penguins in honor of the first chapter book he listened to and LOVED.  Woot woot!

More to come for March wrap ups…but this is already long enough!