Friday, December 27, 2013

Something Special

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Someone was just a little excited about their Christmas present. It was so much fun to watch her! She told me awhile back that she wanted a new bike for Christmas, but knew she wouldn't get it because it was too expensive. I really didn't give it much thought until I was doing some online Christmas shopping and found an great deal on a cute girly bike!

The hand me down bikes we have are boyish, and truth be told, not in the best shape. Last summer Vivian wanted to learn to ride, but some of the bikes were too small. Some were too big, and often there were tires or other things that needed fixed. She tried a couple times to learn, but was easily discouraged. Then Christmas morning she got her very own bike.


And that folks, is all the motivation she needed. Once she and Tim had the bike put together, she was riding in a matter of minutes. Now every couple of hours she pipes up, "I am going to go take a bike ride," and off she goes. She has trouble going up hills, but on the level or down the hills, she is riding as if she has been riding for years. I guess she just needed a little more time, and a shiny new pink bike.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Week Before Christmas Break



The weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas at school were intense. There wasn't a normal schedule week in the mix. There was a holiday meal. There were snow delays and a snow day that cancelled a concert, and rescheduled it so that both the elementary and middle school/ high school concerts were the same night. There were extra practices, and time spent in class on music. Bible lessons, reading lessons, music, crafts, and discussions were all pointing to the coming celebration of the birth of Jesus. All this building the excitement and anticipation of Christmas and Christmas break. The final week of school included our concerts, and parties.

This is my class the night of the concert. I had put up some of the morning work for the next day. They came in that night and got to work. They crack me up.


These are my four monkeys. It seriously is impossible to get a decent picture of all four of them at once. ~sigh~ The boys were thrilled to wear bow ties! Lydia was less than thrilled to wear a dress, but Vivian loved it!


The elementary concert went very well. The 5th grade band played. (Sixth grade band plays with the middle school.) The kindergarten sang a few Christmas songs. K-6 sang Joy to the World in English and in Spanish. Then 1-6 had their program. The program was "How Far is it to Bethlehem?" The songs in this program are very sweet and tender. They teared me up a bit. Tim got teared up a bit at the concert too. 

Elementary Concert


Can you find the Appletons? Lydia top row. Nolan in the middle. Viv second row.

Lydia sang in a small group.
Originally the two concerts were scheduled for two nights. The snow day cancelled the original date for the middle school and high school concert. That concert was moved to the same night as the elementary. It was a very intense day, but it was nice to have it all at once. It was nice to not have the kids out late two nights. There is talk of combining the concerts next year too. We will see. 

The older student concert was a nice variety. There was band, choir, and guitar pieces, but also a good mix of solo music and dramatic speaking. 

Guitar Class

Kellen and Ben playing Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring.


Guitar class with middle school choir.

Tim gave the tenors a little support on their a capella piece. 

The concert was Tuesday. Friday was our last day before break. It was a half day and consisted mostly of our Christmas parties. The wonderful moms of my class arranged all the food and the craft activities for the party. They did a great job. One of the craft activities involved getting my hands dirty. 



The kids had to get their hands dirty too. And look what we made. A memento of my first class at CLCS.


It isn't a party without food! 
Thank you moms of second grade. (Thanks too for the pictures I swiped. My camera died that morning.) 

With that, we began our Christmas break. I can not tell you how satisfying it was to come home and unpack those lunch boxes and put them away in the closet. It was wonderful to stay in bed an extra hour or so on this Monday morning. Teaching is enjoyable, but intense. Breaks are extra sweet! 

Merry Christmas everyone!