Another Rando-Dando Post

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. =)

Meanwhile…Micah and Mom time at home

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. =)

Celebrations in Pittsburgh

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.

Rando-Dando

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.

The other special aspects of the weekend

Grandma also came out for a visit for this weekend. Micah and I enjoyed having her all to ourselves for the evening the other guys were in the mountains. We invited Auntie Mel over for dinner that night, too. We played some games and did some artwork. Micah wasn’t quite feeling himself for the weekend, but we still had a good time. His sweet friend brought over homemade soup for him after he heard about Micah’s injury.

We spent the rest of the weekend all together. Ethan played the keyboard in church again. We got busy talking about hosting in our home and how a change might be needed. Couches were moved around to give us a feel for what it would be like to have seating upstairs for a change. =)

We have since made some purchases and donations to switch up our seating at home, but these pictures show the process as we thought about things throughout the weekend. (Pictures to come in future posts)

We loved having this quick visit with my folks. Super thankful for the time together!

A Very Special Weekend

Mikey had been mulling over this concept for years – how to move the boys towards manhood as they matured. He wanted to be incredibly intentional around raising our boys to embrace their manhood with courage and character. His vision was to have a night away in the mountains with Ethan and some of his important spiritual role models. He had been mentioning little things off and on over the past few months to Ethan about it, without giving any details. When the day finally arrived, he sent E an email and told him to be packed for a night away by 11 am. I was then to take him out for lunch to talk to him about the ways I admire him and how my role will change in his life over time, starting with this day. (Meanwhile, Mike was picking up my parents from the airport and arranging things so that my Dad could get to the mountains with Uncle Joel.) We had a great time together and I only barely cried while praying with him.

Next, Ethan and Mike drove up to the mountains where he moved from room to room discovering different men that had come up there to speak into his life. He was shocked! I won’t be able to do this weekend justice, nor do I think this is the place to elaborate. Suffice it to say, it will not be forgotten. He treasured this time and learned much.

It’s humbling to realize how many amazing people we have in our lives; each of whom play a different role. We are thankful to be raising these young men with the help of such a beautiful village, near and far (some are featured here and others aren’t, but we are thankful for each person who loves this young man fiercely). And I cannot express enough how grateful I am to have such an intentional partner. He makes this journey a lot less daunting and a whole lot more fun. So thankful.

This guy is something special. By the grace of God, he’s going to be a part of the change we all want to see in this world.

Home again!

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.

Alaska Adventures, Pt. 2

We were only in Valdez for a quick evening before getting on the ferry to Seward. Our crew ate at “The Fat Mermaid” and loved watching bald eagles and baby bunnies all evening. I’m hopeful I can show some of Ethan’s pictures from that spot because they were pretty remarkable.

On Ethan’s special outing, he enjoyed another boat ride. He, Mike and Grandpa enjoyed birding from this boat for seven hours on Father’s Day.