My Students

The Fab Five are all ready for a new school year…Turkey and Bunny are in 11th grade, Moose starts eighth grade tomorrow, Ladybug is in seventh, and Chickadee is a second grader!

RSCM Camp 2019

Another week of RSCM camp has come to an end! This year, Turkey, Bunny, and Ladybug all attended for the second year in a row (this was Turkey’s fourth year!). When we dropped them off on Monday, it was raining, which was unpleasant, but the rain didn’t last the whole week.

For the first time, their Saturday Evensong service was in Belleville. The church was beautiful, and they sounded beautiful!

This morning, as they have every year, they sang for Mass at St. Louis’ Cathedral Basilica.

The biggest difference this year was that they sang in the balcony of the cathedral. And it was hot up there! So instead of wearing their robes, they wore their RSCM t-shirts, which was kind of a cool change:

They had a great time, and their singing was amazing, but I’m sure glad they’re home!

Kantorei Kamp Week 2019

This week was Kantorei Kamp week at Hope Lutheran Church in St. Louis! This time, only Ladybug and Moose were at camp, so Turkey, Bunny, Chickadee, and I had some adventures while they were making music. On Monday, we went to the St. Louis Zoo for a nice walk before it started raining (again), and then went for a treat at Ted Drewes, since the choristers went on an ice cream walk that day:

On Tuesday, we visited the Missouri Botanical Garden, and then joined the choristers for a swim at the YMCA:

We spent the day Wednesday with the choristers, first for their performance at Laclede Groves, and then to take in a performance of The Marriage of Figaro at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis. It was the first time the Fab Five and I had ever seen an opera!

Today we went to the Butterfly House, and then back to Hope for an evening recital of vocal, instrumental, and handbell music!

Oh, the Fab Five and I also had a pizza picnic at Tower Grove Park for dinner:

Here’s a look at several of the pieces the choristers presented this year:

The choir not only has talented singers, but talented musicians, as well, and they joined together for a special arrangement of “Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow.”

They also did two just-for-fun pieces, which were very popular!

And just like that, another year of Kantorei Kamp is done. We’ve very blessed to be able to have our children be part of such great musical instruction!

SIXTEEN!!!

Today is Turkey’s SIXTEENTH birthday…I can’t even believe it!

He wanted to get up early and open his presents before Moose went to school:

He got a car for his birthday…a Lego car. It’s a huge set, and he’s been working on it for a good portion of the day, and it still isn’t done. It has a lot of cool features!!!

In addition to the car and a Lego Movie 2 set from his siblings, he also received some Lego gift cards, so we went to the mall this morning, and he picked up a set he’s wanted for a long time. That one didn’t take so long to build:

He decided he wanted a trifle for his birthday, which included a homemade chocolate mocha custard…I think he enjoyed it!

I can’t believe we have a sixteen-year-old in the house. I know I say that about every new age, but 16 is getting awfully close to legal adult status, which makes me feel a tiny bit old!

Lego–Mission: Imagination

A few weeks ago, Legoland Florida tweeted about a Lego contest related to the new Lego movie that comes out this week. Turkey has always asked me to keep an eye out for Lego contests he can enter, so I told him about it, and he came up with a few models for his entries. It only took a few days from when he entered to when I got the phone call saying he had won! We think this is the winning entry:

Even though the rules said it could six to eight weeks for him to receive his prize, it was delivered today:

As soon as school was done for the day, Turkey got to work building Emmet’s Dream House/Rescue Rocket!

As always, it didn’t take him too long to complete the project:

He’s very excited to have his Lego-Building skill recognized by Lego, and to be rewarded for it!


RSCM Camp 2018

For the last two summers, Turkey has attended the RSCM St. Louis summer camp…this year, Bunny and Ladybug joined him!

After a week of singing, singing, and more singing (plus some other fun activities!), they sang for the Choral Evensong service at 1st Presbyterian in Kirkwood last night.

They accompanied the congregation in singing one of my favorite hymns, “Christ, Mighty Savior.”

They sang another favorite of mine, the Magnificat:

This morning, they sang at the 10:00 a.m. Mass at the Cathedral Basilica in St. Louis. After the service, the Archbishop even commented that while they were singing, it sounded like the gates of Heaven had opened up, and I agree!

One of the pre-service pieces they sang was “Praise the Lord, O My Soul.”

Anglophile that I am, I couldn’t help but love hearing them sing “I Was Glad!”

We really missed having them at home all week, but it was very exciting to hear them sing, and hear all of their stories once they returned home!

Markel Family Summer Vacation–Day Two

Last Thursday, we had one vacation event planned, and it was a big one, especially for Turkey…we went to Legoland! While everyone was looking forward to going, Turkey in particular has always dreamed of visiting Legoland, but he was starting to think that our trip to the Legoland Discovery Center in Chicago last January was as close as he was going to get.

We had such a fun time! We went on as many rides as possible, including Chickadee’s first roller coaster (she was not a fan!). We also really enjoyed the Miniland, which included landmarks from Florida, the U.S., and, of course, Star Wars!

One of the highlights of our visit was the water skiing show, which included life-size minifigs on water skis!

When the regularly scheduled afternoon thunderstorm popped up, we decided we had seen everyone we wanted to see, so we stopped at Publix (again), which was conveniently located across the street from Legoland, and then at the Wawa gas station, which Ryan was very excited about. Along the way, we even saw actual orange trees along the side of the road!

Back at the hotel, we went for another swim, and then took a walk around to see more of the retro sights.

Thursday was a busy day, but wait until you see all we did on Friday!