I’ll start with some pics from the last few weeks of homeschool life. A couple of highlights included dress-like-a-book-character day at CC, a Challenge B field trip to explore Ralph Moody (the author who wrote Little Britches) related places, and Mock Trial Boot Camp. Please note the amazing banner Micah is holding on costume day – I sewed it myself. Ha! Micah was very appreciative and thankfully didn’t look at it too closely.
Other happenings include a playdate at friend’s house so that I could have some relaxing time solo, a sick day for Micah with a little cold, a visit from Auntie Mel to help with weaving, lots of chess with Uncle Joel, watching cousin Matthew’s play (he was a hilarious Sheriff Nottingham!), reviewing games and playing chess with Dad, and a quick solo trip for the boys to go say hello to neighbors on Halloween. Micah also does a lot of Risk Legacy playing, even by himself. And I am back to doing some walks as my foot seems to be healing decently.
Last weekend we were able to host a friend from Safe Families for the weekend. We played lots of games, enjoyed some outside time, and did a lot of LEGO, including making mini-figs representing each of us. Things went extremely well. Micah also went to graduation to get his green belt that Saturday. Here’s a video of him sparring his coach and here’s one of him breaking the board. Micah’s putting his first beads of sweat on his new belt in the one that looks odd. =)
This past Sunday the boys had the opportunity to play percussion in church with part of our children’s choir. We were missing a lot of families, which was a shame, but the boys really enjoyed trying out the cojone and djembe. They’ve been taking lessons with Mr. Kyle. Here’s a link to the service. Their song is at the end (1:12:21).
We have also had our first snows. This meant we had to bring in all of our remaining produce and we could enjoy hot chocolate.
Before I get to a post about life while Mikey was in India, I’ll get us caught up with some regular life rhythms. The order won’t be quite right, I’m sure, but it covers the beginning of September 2022.
We’ve continued to make little updates to our home. We finally replaced a very old piano bench that was shedding pieces of faux leather all over. We got a lamp downstairs and switched around the guest bedroom.
Mikey went fishing with our dear family friends. It meant that I had the whole morning and much of the afternoon to myself. I spent some of it reading, some of it prepping for school, and some of it cleaning. But it was definitely glorious to have some time solo at the house. =)
We enjoyed some time with Reggie (always a treat!) and also got out to play tennis together nearby. I snapped a quick pic of the boys staying up reading one night. It’s a sight that makes me so happy! And Uncle Joel has been coming over on Friday afternoons to play chess with the boys. They are LOVING this extra special time with him.
Mike traveled a lot in September. He had his annual guys’ trip, a trip to NY for the Primal Path kickoff event, and a trip to Minnesota for his work picnic. (Not to mention India) In the meantime, he played in a golf tourney and got his second hole-in-one ever. Pretty exciting. Micah wrote him a note after one of those trips to welcome him home. We had run in our friends’ fundraising run and my foot has been sore ever since. Lame. But worth it. We also went to a second reception for my cousin at a park up the street. It was lots of fun. A ridiculously fun thing happened there: the boys were sitting at a table with every one of their teachers for this year (except tutors from CC and their piano teacher). They each had their Sunday School teachers at the table, me (obviously), and their drum teacher. Mikey was home in time to enjoy our annual church service and picnic at Long Scraggy. He always manages to squeeze in some fun with the boys while he’s home. He got in a workout with Micah and replaced his old bike. He also has been spending every morning with Ethan doing the Primal Path study together.
And we’ve got some signs of fall happening! The weather has finally cooled off and our walks and outside time has been so very lovely.
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. =)
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. =)
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):
Another highlight is all of the fishing the guys did (including from off of the stand up paddle board). Micah caught two tiny fish and loved the experience so much. We saw a moose swim across Brainard Lake while some of the guys were out on the water. It was pretty incredible.
Other pics from the trip:
This is easily one of our favorite places to camp. It’s not far and is just so very beautiful. We’ll be back next year, as long as we can get a site in January. =D
We spent the first couple of days upon our arrival resting (trying to stay awake while utterly exhausted), doing laundry, mowing the lawn, working out, and getting food in the house. But it was nice to get back into our usual rhythms again.
Mike had to travel to Minnesota that first full week back. We made popsicles to beat the heat and also went on a birding trip to a new spot. We invited Mel, Joel, and Matthew over on a whim to enjoy homemade pizza and homemade ice cream one of those nights.
We celebrated our 16-year anniversary and then Independence Day when Mikey was back home again. We played pickleball, I think, for our anniversary (the day after, I believe) and had homemade fondue at the house, and I went to see Micah earn his blue belt. Micah was able to earn his blue belt by re-teaching his class one of the skills they had learned previously – I think it was the short jab maybe? He had missed tip testing, but his coaches gave him an opportunity to still earn with the rest of his class. For Independence Day we had our usual dessert, played some ping pong, went for a bike ride on the Highline Canal (or maybe we did that for our anniversary, I can’t remember now) and enjoyed some fireworks in our neighborhood.
The following week Mike had a very quick trip to play golf with some friends. Thankfully he was home in time to deal with Micah’s injury. A neighborhood friend accidentally crashed his bike into Micah and he ended up needing eight stitches! He was mega brave and we were so proud of the way Ethan handled the situation by calmly walking him home right away and reminding him to apply pressure to the wound.
Thought I would do a quick post on other things that have been happening since my folks left and Ethan became a teenager.
E played piano both in church and at Long Scraggy in the weeks that followed my parents’ visit. Long Scraggy came first. I didn’t take any pictures during the service, of course, but I have a few of Micah afterwards as we enjoyed the area. These were his first times playing along with a band for anything other than a couple jam sessions with folks from church. He did a great job for both. Mikey snapped a picture of E after the service when they were playing the final song as people left/chatted. You could also find it on YouTube here.
Mike and Micah have been doing a lot of workouts together. They seems to have a great time and often take pics to send to Mike’s online fitness instructor.
Other happenings include playing games as a fam, doing castle research, enjoying our home-grown strawberries, and going birding at Bluff Lake while Micah plays at a friend’s house.
You may recall that I enjoy pulling food pranks on the boys on April Fools Day. This year we had friends over for our monthly Challenge A study hall, so I tricked them instead. I gave them “meatballs” in a crockpot (really just oatmeal balls with chocolate powder), “juice” (jell-o in a cup), and “carrots” (cheese dip in the shape of carrots with a little parsley on top – you’ve seen this one many times before). But for just the boys, I told them I had made donuts. Ethan was on to me from the beginning and was not impressed. Micah loved them. They are just apples with vanilla yogurt and cinnamon sugar on top.
Micah has been loving reading on his own lately. I often catch him reading books while lying on the ground. He especially loves books about dogs or castles. And Ethan does his school outside any day that feels decent. They have also been working together to write an informational essay and a persuasive essay about getting a Boxer.
Micah finished up his last day in CC community last week. E and I still have two weeks to go. One of my very favorite parts about this community is these ladies right here. It’s a gift to walk this journey together each week. Another thing I enjoy is how seen each child is by everyone else – Ethan had lunch with our youngest student and another Foundations/Essentials kiddo. E also took pictures of everyone for our yearbook. And I snapped this one of him while we played Headbandz with various fallacies.