Wow, Micah is 4 weeks old tonight! And life has gone on in other areas as well!
1. The Tuesday morning co-op finished up the year on Tuesday with a second week doing the Presidential Physical Fitness Test. Luke was a Presidential award winner, and Caleb and Jonathan were both National winners, just missing the Presidential mark by a bit in 1 or 2 categories. We did have a big personal victory for Caleb in the run, though. Eight-nine year olds can either run the 1/2 mile (in a blistering pace of about 3 1/2 minutes for the Presidential time) or the mile (in 8 1/2 minutes). Caleb just wanted to run the 1/2 mile, but I encouraged him to do the mile, because I knew Luke couldn't make the Presidential 1/2 mile time 2 years ago. He dithered back and forth, but eventually he decided to try the mile. And he came in under the 8:30 time! I knew he could do it, and I was so proud of him for trying, because he often likes to just do the easiest thing, not the thing which he is capable of but is more difficult.
Nathan and the other Rivendell boys ran as well. They actually ran with all the different age ranges, encouraging all their little brothers and sisters, and after the siblings were done, they also would go back and find the runners who were having a hard time finishing and run with them into the finish. It was so nice to see them being so encouraging!
Tuesday evening we had the big end-of-the-year picnic and graduation ceremony for the 6th graders. The weather forecast for Tuesday was very gloomy--lots of rain and thunderstorms--but the Lord held off the rain and bad weather until Tuesday night, so we had a lovely day! It was really special for my parents to be there to see Luke get recognized as a graduate. They usually don't get to be at these kind of occasions!
2. I've used the new oven a few times this week, and it's been mixed, at best. I baked chocolate chip cookies for Bob's birthday, and they turned out fine. But I made meatloaf Monday night, and that was dry and a bit brown on the bottom. I made a turkey on Thursday (that was actually what Bob requested for his birthday dinner, but I didn't get it out of the freezer early enough to make on Monday!), and that was also a lot drier than usual. So I'm going to have to play around a bit with temperatures and times, it looks like. But cooking is one thing I do a ton of, so I will have plenty of opportunities to practice, LOL. So far I have only really used the top oven, so I need to do more with the bottom oven and see if it has the same issues.
3. My parents left this morning, after being here for 5 weeks. We are really missing them already! They were such a tremendous help the whole time they were here. They gave the girls baths and put them down many times. Mom helped with the cooking, Dad helped with some outside work, and both helped with the general clean-up. Now we have to get back into a regular routine! Bob is going TDY to CA for the week on Monday, so I will be thrust into dealing with all the kids on my own! Good thing I have so many older helpers, especially ones who want to hold Micah! And we are getting a ton of delicious meals from friends in church or co-op, so I doubt I'll have to do too much cooking next week! Our friends are such a huge blessing to us!
4. Looking ahead to next week, we have our last meeting of Rivendell on Tuesday. I can't believe the year is over! We're having an ice cream sundae party to celebrate! The next week is the Stanford Achievement Tests, so we are mainly doing test practice and prep this week. We are starting the Latin class up again on Wednesday. We took a few weeks off after I had the baby, although the boys kept doing exercises. We were at a review point in the book, so that was perfect timing. And Friday we are taking a little field trip to the National Cathedral with the other Rivendell families. Should be fun!