Ella's first couple of days of middle school have been a roaring success. She seems to really love her classes and teachers (her English teacher is a young dude with Harry Potter-themed tattoos all up his forearms). She comes home buzzing from the mental stimulation and I think she especially loves the independence - the traveling to and from school alone, having some space between herself and Holden and me. Her school has already had a welcome breakfast for the new parents and the principal and the other parents I met there all seem really engaged and enthusiastic. It has the energy and excitement that you would expect from a brand new school.
Unfortunately I have no photos to add because this is Ella's thing, all by herself. So you're seeing exactly what I'm seeing of her new life. Which is just about nothing.
Our Friday night classes at The Met have started back up again. I say "our" because Kevin and I usually tag along to all the classes now instead of getting drinks in the museum bar. Ella and Holden are both taking Pause for Pegasus and their teachers are amazing - experts in ancient history and incredibly interesting people. This semester the kids will be reading The Homeric Hymns and studying art that is related (although the instructors will go to great lengths to make connections between the art they choose and the Greek texts, as evidenced in the above Frederic Church painting and the statue of the Japanese warrior below).
Spending Friday nights in the museum is still a highlight of all of our weeks.
And it doesn't stop us from still going up to Woodstock. The kids slept in the van as we drove up after class on Friday night. It will be our last weekend up there for a few weeks now that soccer season has started, but it was worth the late night drive to get a couple quiet days in the country, especially given Ella's new hectic schedule.
We went in search of a lake that was recommended to me by a homeschool mom in the city. The private lake was closed for swimming for the summer, unfortunately, but we decided to take a hike around the area and found a cool abandoned railroad and some beautiful hiking.