Molly

First day of school

Posted in Leah, Molly, School on September 4th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

It’s the day after Labor Day, which means it’s the first day of school! It’s a big day for our house, as Molly is now in middle school!!! We can no longer pretend that this isn’t happening. I guess we really had to stop pretending last week at 6th grade orientation.

Middle School Orientation

Middle school means our mornings are now earlier, as middle school starts an hour earlier than elementary, and also requires a bus ride instead of walking around the block. So, there is no picture of her with her sister, as Leah is still asleep.

First day of middle school

There were of course pictures with kids on the block.

Middle school friends

Middle schoolers on the block

And then waiting at the bus stop. We have so many kids around us that her bus stop is ridiculous. I counted 35 kids at the stop. It’s the first stop, and fills more than half the bus.

Bus stop

Then it was time to wake up Leah. She’s very excited about this start of 3rd grade.

First day of 3rd grade

One of the main reasons she is excited is that Madison is finally in her class.

3rd grade friends

We got a picture with some of the elementary kids on the block.

Elementary kids on the block

And of course with the wildcat.

Wildcat

And then she was off to class. Not only is Madison in her class, but lots of her other friends are too. And not only that, her teacher is Mr. Chen who Molly had and Leah has wanted ever since.

Best class

When Leah got home, she said it was the “best first day ever”!

National Philharmonic Prep Summer String Institute

Posted in Extracurriculars, Molly, Music on September 3rd, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Molly was selected to attend the Prep Summer String Institute put on by the National Philharmonic this year. This is a week long summer camp put on by folks from the National Philharmonic (who play at the Strathmore in Bethesda where we saw Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban earlier this year). They only take really advanced students, so Molly was excited to be selected.

This camp was serious. They mailed Molly music a month in advance so she could practice it ahead of time. Then camp itself was an intense week of music. She rehearsed pieces with the full orchestra, had sessions on technique, worked on movement exercises (e.g. bounce a tennis ball to the beat of a song), and broke into chamber ensembles to work on more pieces. She even got to have private 1-on-1 lessons with the principal violist of the National Philharmonic. Combined with having to wake up early to fight traffic driving down toward Washington, the days were exhausting but so much fun.

They put on a concert at the end of the week. First each of the chamber ensemble's performed.

Chamber Ensemble

Chamber Ensemble

Here’s Molly playing with her chamber ensemble.

After all the ensembles played, the full orchestra came together.

Orchestra

Molly was one of only 2 violas in the orchestra (the other was the daughter of the institute director). They were really glad to have Molly, as the previous year they had no violas. I guess most kids that start early enough to be at this level choose violin or cello.

Orchestra

And finally, here’s the full orchestra playing together. It’s amazing that they can sound so good after just a week long camp.

Molly had no friends at the camp, but she did have one friendly face for the week. Margaret (Molly’s regular private instructor, National Philharmonic player, and the children’s minister at our church) was on staff as well. Molly didn’t work with her during the week, but Molly wouldn’t have been at this camp if it wasn’t for Margaret. Thanks Margaret!

Thanks Margaret

Molly may not have started with friends, but she certainly made several. In fact, after the concert we couldn’t understand what was taking her so long to come out. Turns out she was busy collecting email addresses from girls she had made friends with so she could keep in touch.

Thanks to Aunt EA and Uncle Scott for their hospitality as well. Jen, Molly, and Leah spent one night with them as they live fairly close to the camp. That saved one commute each way, and meant Molly got to sleep a little later one day.

Molly hopes to do this again next year, and we may also try to catch a National Philharmonic show to see some of her teachers in action. It was a really great experience. Thanks to the National Philharmonic for offering this great program!

Basement fort

Posted in Leah, Molly on September 3rd, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

The girls decided to build a fort in the basement.

Fort

Inside the fort were two air mattresses and their two sleeping bags. They ended up sleeping in it for two nights.

In the fort

Family Worship

Posted in Church, Leah, Molly on September 2nd, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

August was Family Worship at Glen Mar, so the kids got involved. Molly and Leah were joined by Simon to read the scripture one Sunday.

Reading in church

The next Sunday was even better. I got to lead worship with both my daughters. I loved it, and both girls did a great job.

Family Worship band

Family Worship band

My Manidokan Life!!

Posted in Molly on September 1st, 2018 by molly – Be the first to comment

I had a great year at Camp Manidokan. It was my third year and my best year yet!

Sunday

Sunday was the day that I arrived at Camp Manidokan! I had left at around 1:00, and gotten there around 2:00. We stood in line for about an hour until 3:00 when they moved us inside for check in. After check in, I went to my lodge. Getting set up was harder than my past two years because my sister Leah was going to Manidokan this year for the first time (She wrote a blog about Manidokan also). After I was set up, I put on my bathing suit but waited to see if I would do the swim test or not. This is because it was thundering at the time. Unfortunately, I never did the swim test that day, because the pool closed due to all the thunder. So when we found out there would be no swim test, my parents left. And when the time came, I went to dinner. After dinner, I went to campfire hill, where there was a campfire, we sang songs, people from the past and future came to visit out of a time machine, all the normal stuff. After our campfire hill adventure, we had chapel. Then my 5-6 group went back to our lodge, had an evening snack, and took a shower. Then my day ended.

5-6

Monday

Monday was my first full day of camp! I went rafting on Monday, and it was the best rafting trip I’ve every done. Here is a picture before we got on the water.

Molly rafting

Rafting was very fun, one reason is because when I had gone rafting my past times, I only got out of the raft to swim in the water once (not counting after lunch). Only this year I got to do it twice!! When we got back, we had a bit of time, but then we did the swim test. I passed, and then I had pool time. After pool time was store time. Then I went back up to the lodge after store time, and stayed there until dinner. After dinner, we did an activity called Save the Time Machine. This was when we went to different stations to get items so we could fix the time machine. We had to find these items because the time machine broke. When the people came out of the time machine, they tried to go back to their times, but they couldn't. They just came out the other side back to camp. So they were trapped at Manidokan!! After the activity, we had chapel (we as in the people at camp), and then everyone went to where they were sleeping. Then my day ended.

Tuesday

Tuesday was the day I did the Sawmill Creek Hike! The Sawmill Creek hike is a hike to a water hole, where the campers that go there can swim in the (cold) water, jump off the rock/ledge into a deep part of the water, or relax on shore. I swam in the water, but there was no jumping for me! After the hike back to Manidokan, we had lunch. And after lunch we had pool games, but it was cut short by a sudden downpoor (It started after the 5-6’s got to shelter though). So instead of pool games, we played Mafia.

This is how you play Mafia: You need 7 or more players, of which one will be the moderator. The moderator puts everyone to sleep (in the game) and chooses a mafia, a nurse, and a detective. Then the Mafia wakes up and chooses someone to kill. Then the Mafia goes to sleep and the nurse wakes up, choosing someone to save. Then the nurse goes to sleep and the detective wakes up, choosing someone to suspect. Then everyone wakes up, and the moderator reveals the dead person and the suspected person, who are both now out of the game. This goes on and on for a while normally, but after two rounds of saving, killing, and suspecting, players can accuse players of being the Mafia. Then the living players have a vote, if the accusing player is right, the game is over, if they are wrong, they are out. If after a while, the Mafia is not caught, then the living will go into trial, and will vote on who the Mafia is. If they are right, the game is over, if they are not the game continues, but the person with the most votes is out. I do not know how the Mafia could win, because when I play, they are always caught before they can win.

After many games of Mafia, we had our normal pool time, and then store, and then some free time before dinner. Then we had dinner, and after dinner we played outdoor games and soaked our shirts for tie-dye the next day. After our soaking (shirts for tie-dye and ourselves) and games, we had chapel. After chapel we had our evening snack. Then my day ended.

Wednesday

Wednesday was my zip-line and climbing wall day! I started off with a great day. I did the zip-line, and it was awesome!!!! Here is a video of me on the zip-line (beware, I say weird things).

After the zip-line I had lunch. Then I did the climbing wall. Here is a picture from the climbing wall.

Climbing wall

After the climbing wall we had pool time, and then store time. After dinner my group tid-dyed shirts. For our evening activity that night, we did mission night. Mission night was when we talked about the fund that Manidokan was donating money to to help Puerto Rico after the hurricane Maria went through. This Fund was UMCOR, here is a link to the video that we saw about UMCOR. We had stations that were all related to something that would have happened during the flood. Here were the stations: salsa dancing, wants and need (for your home), house building (to withstand the hurricane), how to get to safety (during the hurricane), and what can you afford (because in Puerto Rico they are sort of poor). After mission night we had chapel.

After chapel we went back to the lodge to get ready for roasting marshmallows at campfire hill, and playing Fortress. Fortress is a game played on a hill (at Manidokan) where the players (kids) have to get a glowing bottle without getting bammed. Getting bammed is when people (the counselors and staff) have flash lights and if they say bam and shine the flashlight on you, then you have to go the start (the bottom of the hill). After we did all that stuff, we went back to the lodge and had a sleep over in the main room. We watched Lilo and Stitch, and only a few people (including me) were awake at the end of the movie. Then my day ended.

Thursday

Thursday I went to Harpers Ferry! It was fun, and I got to go near the water this year! Here is a picture of when I was by the water.

Middle schooler

The walk there felt surprisingly short, and the walk back to the van felt a bit longer, due to the tired legs of my peers and myself. When I was there I bought Ice cream, a Girls Grab Bag, and Original Jelly Beans from a historical candy shop. Here is me with the food I brought back.

Harper's Ferry goodies

When we got back, we had a bit of time before we went to the pool. Then we had store time. And then we had dinner. After dinner we had the talent show. I did not preform though. After the talent show, we had chapel.

During Chapel, we did communion!!! Then we were “baptized” with water balloons, in which me and mostly some 3-4 and some 5-6 girls ran together behind the dining hall, away from the water balloons so no wetness was bestowed upon us. After chapel, I asked if I could have more communion, and Pastor Mike said, “Help yourself.” So I did. I ate one whole half of a piece of bread (which was probably a hot dog bun) mostly dipped in Grape Juice. Then my day ended.

Friday

Friday was my last day of Manidokan for the week. I woke up and had breakfast, and then 5-6 had a cleaning competition. We had about 10-20 minutes to get our room as clean as possible, and then the judges revealed the best rooms. The winners were, for boys, the boys (there was only one room of boys), and for the girls, drum roll please, my room!!!!!! The prize was first in line for snack, which was great for me, because I normally get out of the pool 5-10 minutes early to get first in line for snack, but then I didn't have to wait! For my morning activity, I went to the compound and did a slip-n-slide/human bowling with the 3-4’s (Including Leah!!). Then I played 9 square (and put on clothes instead of a bathing suit). Here is a link to a video that explains how to play 9 square. We stayed in the compound until lunch. After lunch we went back to the lodge and packed all our stuff. Then we had microwave s’mores (I had a peanut butter cup one [a peanut butter cup instead of chocolate]) and watched Lilo and Stitch again, because mostly all the 5-6’s didn’t see the whole movie. Then some (bareley any) 5-6’s went to the pool. And then we had store, which I got first in line for because I won the cleaning competition. Then we stayed at the compound (playing 9 square) until dinner. After dinner, all the parents came, we sang a few songs, got our trunks, and left. Here is a picture of a few girls before we left.

5-6 friends

I Loved Manidokan this year. It was my best year so far. I hope you enjoyed my blog. Good Bye!! :)

Manidokan sisters

Posted in Leah, Molly on September 1st, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Molly’s gone to sleep-away camp at Camp Manidokan for the past couple of years and loved it. Leah’s wanted to go, but she had to get old enough. This year, she was finally old enough to attend a week-long session. So, we signed them both up for the 3rd week of July.

While there were there together, they were in separate groups based on the grade they are entering (Leah was in the 3-4 group, Molly the 5-6 group). They still saw plenty of each other. They’ve both written posts about their experiences, which will show up on the blog here this afternoon. Here they are when we dropped them off. Leah may have been the only first-time camper to show up in a Camp Manidokan shirt (thanks to Molly outgrowing it).

Camp sisters

Molly had 9 friends go with her again this year (8 were the same as last year, 1 was a new friend of a friend taking the place of the 1 girls that did not return this year). Jen used her recruiting skills for Leah as well this year, so Leah ended up having 4 friends (from church, school, and playgroup) join her at camp. Impressive given how many kids and parents were reluctant to send kids so young to sleep away camp. Here are pictures of most (but not all, I missed one) of those kids.

Leah's friends

Molly's roommates

Camp friends

5-6 friends

Jen and I had fun on our week without kids as well. I’ll write up a bit more about one of our fun activities here soon. The days flew by and before we knew it, it was time to pick them up. We actually drove out that way a bit early so we could stop by a hardwood lumber store in Frederick. Afterward, we had some time to kill, so we stopped at a lovely park to relax for a few final childless moments.

Last minute chilling

Playgroup friends for life

Posted in Church, Leah, Molly, Playdates on August 31st, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Friends for over 10 years for the big kids, and they always have fun when they are together.

Laser tag with playgroup friends

Telestrations is always fun and full of laughter!

Telestrations is always fun

Shipwreck VBS. Molly and Simon moved up to VBX (x-treme) this year for rising 6th & 7th grade. They all had a blast!

Shipwreck VBS

One stripe down

Posted in Molly, Sports on August 30th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

Molly has her brown belt in karate, and is working toward black. When she got her brown belt, it had 3 stripes on it, which she has to work off over 18 months in order to test for her black belt. After 6 months of work, she got the first stripe removed. Congratulations, Molly.

One stripe down

Encore Music Camp

Posted in Molly, Music on August 28th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

While Leah was at baking camp, Molly attended Encore Music Camp here in Howard County. It’s a full-day music camp for middle schoolers (yes, Molly is entering middle school). They had a wide variety of levels and had a lot of fun together.

Molly was excited to have friends at the camp. She, Simon, and Jake have been friends since they were infants.

Friends

The string orchestra did great and had a lot of fun in their end-of-the-week performance. The last song (Rosin Eating Zombies, starting at 12:46 ) was our favorite.

Molly was also part of the choir.

At the end of the concert, the entire camp came together to play.

Molly took a class on conducting as one of her electives. Then she got to conduct this ensemble at the end of the week.

Conducting

Molly also took guitar as an elective. She said it was hard.

Learning guitar

It was late after the end-of-the-week concert, but we still stopped at The Snowball Stand for the first time for a treat.

Post concert treat

Last day of school

Posted in Leah, Molly, School on July 11th, 2018 by c-had – Be the first to comment

After what seemed like a very long school year (mostly due to snow days slowly chipping away at spring and summer break), the last day of school finally arrived on June 19. Molly and Leah were happy about this.

Last day party

Oh wait, that’s not the right picture. Here you go.

Last day of school

Molly’s final picture with the sign out front of elementary school.

Sign picture