Spartan Races, Continued

The boys finished their races in the early afternoon on Saturday, so after washing up and eating we still had a good bit of time to enjoy the Springs.  We decided to tour the Olympic Training Center.  It was a great way to spend the rest of our day!

We spent the night in the Springs so that we could be close for Mike’s Spartan Sprint at 9 am the next morning.  He and his buddy competed together.  This is the same good friend that is in his weekly Bible study and who does CrossFit (and the Festivus) with Mike regularly.  He’s a great guy and it was fun to get to cheer on the two of them together!  It was the first Spartan Race either participated in and both said that it won’t be the last. =)

Look at how clean they look!

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I hung with these two crazies during the ~1.5 hours it took them to complete the 4.5+ mile/20+ obstacles race.  We had a good time even though we probably only saw them do about 5 of the obstacles.  Side note – I’m trying to shift the dab to something more fun like the Aaron Rodgers championship belt move.  It’s not very successful.

Here are some pics from the race itself taken by yours truly.  As usual Mike and Steve did a nice job of high-fiving and chatting with us in between obstacles / whenever we saw them.

And here are some fun ones the Spartan folks captured:

And here’s what they looked like at the end:

Lots of fun to watch them compete together.  Super proud of our guy. =)

Spartan Races

On Saturday, the boys ran in their first Spartan races.  These are obstacle course runs; Ethan ran a 1-mile course and Micah did a 1/2 mile one.

Ethan’s obstacles included things like sand bag carrying, climbing over various walls, doing box jumps, throwing a spear, and running through mud pits.  Mike ran down the hill to catch videos and pictures of the part of the course that was down in the valley.

Micah’s obstacles included much of the same things, but his course didn’t go down into the valley like Ethan’s had, so we were able to see everything he did.  If you even know a smidgen of his story, you know how much we’ve been praising God for the healing He has done in Micah’s heart.  It’s been such a thrill to watch him try new things with a whole lot less anxiety!

We are SO proud of them for doing something so hard all on their own.  They had a blast and both want to do more races in the future!

 

Mini Memory Masters

In Classical Conversations, there is a great goal of becoming a Memory Master at the end of the school year.  A Memory Master is someone who can recite, without any mistakes (unless they are corrected on their own), every piece of memory work from the 24 weeks of CC.  This includes the timeline (a 13 minute long song spanning from creation to present day events), history, science, math, english, latin, and geography.  It’s a pretty incredible feat and one that we will *hopefully* someday accomplish.  We’re working our way towards it. =D

This year, Ethan chose to memorize all 24 history sentences, all 24 weeks of math facts and all 24 science sentences.  Mike was the judge and he said Ethan did it!  I wasn’t allowed to be present for his test because I tend to give things away without realizing it because I’m busy trying to memorize it all, too! =)  Sadly, I only snapped one picture during and one afterwards.  We are super proud of this guy!  His memory is unreal and we loved seeing the hard work he put into this goal!!

This was Micah’s first full year in CC and he had a giant goal, too.  He wanted to memorize all 24 history sentences and all 24 science sentences.  This is a pretty tricky cycle to memorize as every history sentence begins with a date and many of the science sentences have to do with various parts of the body (i.e. what are some parts of the digestive system?).  Micah did an excellent job memorizing and working hard this year and we rewarded him for his hard work, too!  He was able to get every sentence with very minor help (i.e. “does it start with a date?” “yes, in 1898…” and he’d take it from there).  Below are two videos of his favorite history sentences.

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Both boys were awarded with lego sets and dinner out!  We wanted to reward hard work and perseverance more than even accomplishing the goal, because that means more to us than knowing a bunch of facts.  We were very pleased with their effort!!

Mid-April

We had a very exciting visitor to our backyard.  Ethan actually captured the best picture of it, but I haven’t snagged it off of his camera, yet.  This big guy hung out in our yard for a good 5 minutes, scrounging around for worms!  He also visited our neighbors’ backyard, which is when the boys were allowed outside for pictures.  A couple of days later, we saw a duck in the yard.  Fun!

Micah sang in front of our CBS class with his class.  It was pretty darling.  I only made one short video of it, but I’d be happy to share it with you if you’d like to see him singing, “I Wanna Walk, Walk like Jesus”.  His buddy (and my friend’s kid) is on the far right and Micah is on the far left.

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Here are some shots from homeschooling:

Most days we drink tea and read a book out loud.  This last picture was taken during one of our little meetings to decide what book to read next.  I’ve gotta say, though, “The Wind in the Willows” has been a hard one for us to get into…I’m hoping the coloring books I got last week will help.  =/

Mike was also out of town for work in the middle of the month, so I made sure to take walks at the park each day.  The boys just played in the trees or around the middle of the park while I walked around.  It was lovely.  And Mikey sent flowers to let me know he was thinking of me – and they have lasted over a week!!

Lastly, a quick video of Ethan playing some piano:

Early April

This has been a pretty fun month.  I really enjoy spring in Colorado because you never know what the weather will bring and it means we’re closing in on the last bit of school so things start relaxing around here.  It’s a lot of fun.

One weekend in early April when Mike was in Canada for work, the boys and I joined Aunt Ashley and her family at their new place for dinner.  The boys especially enjoyed seeing their dog, Gracey, and getting to play Wii (I think that’s what it was…) games with Uncle Zach.  This was Micah’s first video game ever and he was beaming with pride!  Thanks, Zach, for patiently walking them through it and keeping it fun for them!

That Sunday evening we went to a birthday party for a kiddo in Micah’s CC class.  The boys especially enjoyed trying rock climbing for the first time (milestone alert!).  I think both would enjoy it more if they had longer to try it and get the hang of it.  Ethan was especially nervous about the height, but he kept getting higher the more attempts he made.  And Micah used his arms a lot more than his legs, so he’d benefit from a little more coaching.  But, seriously, they loved it and did great!

A few nights later, I went out with my dear friend for some rock climbing at a rock climbing gym we enjoy.  It had been a good year+ since we had gone, so it was fun to get back out there again…even if I was pretty rusty/weak.  The boys asked for a picture of me reaching the top – so we made an awesome video of my whole climb up one of the easier runs.  It’s a good 2 minutes long, so I trimmed it for your benefit.  Now you can just laugh with me at my ridiculous attempts to impress the boys…by running into the wall:

While I was out rock-climbing, the guys were busy welcoming our new-to-us piano into our home.  Ethan was especially excited about this and said it was “one of the best days of his life”.  He snapped lots of pictures.  Micah attempted to snap a bunch, too, but sadly his camera ran out of batteries.  He was pretty devastated about it.

We had our final day of CC on April 5th and then had our end of year party/celebration on the 12th in the evening.  Each class does a little presentation in front of everyone (about 80 people were in attendance this evening) about something we’ve been learning. Micah’s class sang the preamble to the US Constitution – thus the patriotic theme.  Sweet Micah told me that evening when getting tucked in for bed that he accomplished one of his goals – he sang up in front of everyone without needing to have me next to him!  The Lord has done so much healing on his sweet heart and mind!  We are thankful!!!  Ethan (and my) class sang the first 12 elements in the periodic table.  Then all of the classes did an orchestra song in a round together.  We have videos of all three, but they won’t upload because they are pretty long!  We’ll be glad to share them in person or through email sometime as per your requests. =D

We also had a really lovely weekend with Daddio back in town.  We played a lot of games and just relaxed together, which was so nice!!  Milestone alert: Micah learned how to play chess!

 

Everyday Life

Here are some pictures from our everyday life.

One day this week we were mixing things up with a parkour obstacle course to do our review work for CC.  Another day we just sat at the counter and drilled.  Micah is trying to do a personal memory master of all 24 weeks of science and history.  Ethan is hoping to do all 24 weeks of science, history and math.  This will be a good challenge for our crew!

 

Micah was asked, “What do the heavens declare?” (a science question from CC):

 

This kind of thing happens to me nearly every week when I sit at the nook and read or do my Bible Study:

 

We’ve been enjoying some seriously good novels lately.  We just finished “The Hobbit” and everyone loved it.  We usually do most of our listening in the car, but we brought this one inside for some extra listening.  And then we watched the cartoon version of the story.  It followed the story pretty well, so that was fun!

 

I finished reading two books in a wonderful series for free on kindle (I think) and then decided to get it from the library for Ethan to enjoy.  He seems to be loving it, too!  I highly recommend it: “The Green Ember”.  If he loves it the way I did (I’m pretty optimistic that he will since he’s already halfway done with it), I’ll grab “Ember Falls” for him next.  I already bought “Ember Rising” because I just knew this would be the kind of series we read more than once and I didn’t get it for free with the other two books. =)

 

And sometimes Micah adds extra assignments to his school day.  He absolutely loves watching the preschool prep videos we borrow from Amy’s family.  His confidence in reading and finding words he knows has improved SO much.  He loves impressing me by doing the quizzes on the app on my phone.  He wrote music the other day for Ethan. =)

 

Updates

A few Saturdays ago Mike was out of town.  It’s been a pretty busy couple of months for us with a lot of solo parenting going on.  I am so thankful that we have FaceTime for the days he’s gone and intentional time when he’s in town!  Anyway, I was sure to schedule a nice day for us that Saturday.  We spent the morning at church so that E could work on his pinewood derby car.  For those that don’t know, this is an annual tradition within the CRC and is something that I did as a kid, too. =)  Uncle Joel worked patiently with a bunch of kids, including Ethan, that morning.  He’s such a blessing!!  Meanwhile, Micah and I worked on his pigeon activity book throughout the morning.

That afternoon, we headed to the library to make dinosaur dioramas.

Other updates include…we still like Legos around here:

And we love to read.  I’ve finished something like 18 books already this year (keep in mind that a lot of them are young adult books and/or books I’m reading with boys).  I discovered a new series that I LOVE and can’t wait to introduce to the boys – The Green Ember.  I highly recommend them – fun, action-packed reads.

We finished another good read-aloud book recently called, “The Prairie Thief”.  It was a fun story and both boys enjoyed it.  A lot of the time I have them color or do puzzles while listening.

E has a love for good stories and has pretty good taste, in my opinion. =)  He’s read a bunch of just silly, fun books (i.e. Diary of a Wimpy Kid) and he still tends to like books with a little more plot (i.e. The Hobbit – his current favorite that we are listening to and almost done with already!!).

We also recently learned more about a series called, “Who Was…” about various famous people (there are also books about living people and places), so I’ve been collecting them from thrift books.com whenever I have a coupon. =)

And the boys have lots of fun picking out their free monthly book at the Book Rack after a day at CC.

The boys reached their reading goal for February so we got to celebrate with pizza hut again.

We just started our final 6 weeks of CC this month.  I hosted all of the tutors for our final planning session.  Mike took the boys out for dinner so we could have less distractions. =)

We still sometimes play school:

And we’re busy finishing this school year strong:

Again, I can’t recall what the boys’ present on during CC without pictures…and I only have pictures of Ethan since I’m his tutor.  He gave one presentation about a lego creation of his and one about…we don’t know because it doesn’t have a prop. Haha!

We had dinner with Reggie sometime in the last month and then he and Mike headed out to float. =)

We’ve spent quite a bit of time in the park.  One day we invited cousin Matthew to join us for some parkour.

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And we got a new game – Life – from Grandma Cleve.  I had only played it once as a kid, so we had to spend some serious time getting re-aquainted with it.  I accidentally made up some rules the first time around. =)

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And lastly, I started doing a little more decorating in the office.  =)  Thanks for the canvas idea, Dad!

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