Sunday, December 13, 2015

Lifestyle of Learning 2015 Edition: Volume Thirty

November 15-December 12
Nearly a month has passed since I last reported what we have been up to so this is likely to be quite the lengthy post.  So here we go.....
One evening during scouts Bishop spent some time practicing color guard for an upcoming Eagle Scout Court of Honor.  A close friend of his has achieved this prestigious rank and he is honored to be a part of the ceremony.

Maceo has gone to his acting class twice a week and to troupe once a week.
He continues with his improvisational acting class and it is always a hoot to watch the guys perform.

Our service group, Hearts to Hands, assembled 24 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

We seek first and foremost to serve others but we do believe in having a good time while doing so as should be illustrated by these group photos.

24 lovely completed boxes!
Hearts to Hands also paired and delivered donated shoes to Sole Food.  We donated 69 pairs which weighed 79 lbs. and will help provide 271 meals to the hungry across the world.

Bishop went to 1984, a video arcade, with a group of friends and attended a birthday sleepover with those same friends.
The science group began to study blood by discussing the components of blood and making a model and by typing their own blood.  We watched this video which described what blood is.  The boys really enjoyed watching this video of a white blood cell pursuing bacteria.  We further explored phagocytosis by viewing this video.  I highly recommend this lesson that shows how to make a model of blood.  Bishop and I have done it twice and both times have felt that it was meaningful.  And, finally, we used this video to walk us through how to use eldon cards to type our blood.  (Man, do I love YouTube).

In history group we covered chapter 15 in The Story of the World and shared British tea while watching a video discussing Quaker church services.

The science group had a truly amazing experience at a DNA lab.  The scientist giving the tour was able to express things simply while still giving substantial information to our group.  He was surprised when Bishop could name three of the four nucleotides in DNA.  He had just expected the boys to say T, C, A, G.

This lab has one of three electron microscopes in the state and the scientist showed us how it works.  He explained how they have to prepare samples to be viewed then showed us some samples.

It was mega cool!
And, once again, group photos can be difficult to take of the guys we hang out with.  I think this first one was nice then it disintegrated into hilarity...ok, even the silly ones are nice.  I love these guys!

After the field trip to the DNA lab we had to get to the airport to pick up Dad who was arriving state-side after being stationed in Korea for three years!!!

We attended our friends Eagle Scout Court Of Honor.  It was also his graduation ceremony (as he was homeschooled).  It was such a privilege to get to be a part of this special time in his life.

Maceo continued to see a lot of stage productions.  He saw Fiddler on the Roof, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat, Clue, and Dogfight. 
He also spent some time with friends at a birthday sleepover.

Bishop was given a really amazing opportunity by a friend of ours who has a bakery and catering service (  She decided to do Thanksgiving preorders and asked if Bishop would like to include his baklava in the offerings.  Of course he snagged that opportunity.  He had three orders come in.  So he made baklava on a Sunday for a Monday delivery.  It was a great experience.  (Thanks, Mandi!!!)

Both of the boys attended youth group then on Monday, after delivering the baklava, Hearts to Hands delivered the 24 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.  We also had an opportunity to do some additional work.  We helped unload other groups donations, then helped box them up into larger boxes to be transported to the processing center.

Maceo did even more acting and improvisational acting classes and troupe and vocal lessons.  And he spent a lot of time hanging out with friends as they are off of school for Thanksgiving break.

Bishop learned how to longboard on Halloween and has been continuing to hone his skill.  We have purchased him a longboard which is very exciting.

Dad was home for Thanksgiving!  Bishop and he were responsible for the turkey.  They chose to brine it and really experimented with the ingredients of the brine.  It was fantastic!!!
Family, food and football make for a great day!!!

Maceo had auditions for Aladdin Jr. and earned a callback.  Callbacks were 5 hours long but so worth it.  First of all, it was the most entertaining call back I have ever seen.  Second of all, he was cast in the show.  Maceo is Jafar!  So for Maceo rehearsals have begun!

Scouts has continued to busy for Bishop with elections (he is patrol leader again), preparing for an upcoming camping trip, and researching camp cooking recipes.  He finished Emergency Preparedness and Citizenship in the Nation merit badges.  As part of the Citizenship in the Nation merit badge requirements he wrote a letter to Senator Roy Blunt and researched the speech given by FDR after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
On December 7 he listened to a recording of FDR delivering that very speech.

History group covered chapters 16-18 in The Story of the World which covered Newton and Locke, scientific farming, Peter the Great, and the Ottoman Turks.
Bishop did a crop rotation logic puzzle.  It was super cool.

He also reviewed the scientific method, made a hovercraft, declared a hypothesis and conducted experiments with his hovercraft.

Science group finished up its study of blood by doing a blood type compatibility exercise.  (The instructions for it can be found here).

And just to continue the trend of showing silliness that happens when these boys are together I include these photos.  Again, I love these boys!

More acting, improv, voice lessons, and troupe for Maceo.  And more show watching as well.  He viewed productions Miracle on 34th Street The Musical twice and a production of Xanadu once.  He also had friends spend the night twice and went to the movie theatre to see Krampus with the cast of Miracle on 34th Street.

Bishop went on a camping trip with his scout troop and his Dad.  He made a hammock from paracord and practiced cooking over direct fire.  He has also done lots of longboarding, down a hill and around town and at the park.

History group had a party before heading into a break.

Bishop and I, at the prompting of a younger girl and her question, had a heavy duty conversation about why the ocean is blue.  Bishop taught me a lot about light refraction and more.
Bishop hung out with friends and played a ton of video games.

We celebrated Hanukkah!

We have a busy, wonderful, full, fantastic life!!!

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