Friday, September 7, 2012

First Day of School Photos

For the past several years, the day after Labor Day marks the first day of homeschooling. It also is the day when we leave for a trip - whether it be for a few days like when we we've traveled to Grand Marais:

Taking a Break from Playing
One of my favorite first day of homeschooling pictures is this one 
taken when the girls were playing in Lake Superior in Grand Marais:
(Taken on September 9, 2010.)

or over a week - like last year when we traveled throughout New England:

Girls by Marble House
Last year we were in New England
during the first week of homeschooling. 
One of the places we visited was Newport, Rhode Island, and 
we were able to see and tour some of the mansions there.
(Taken on September 5, 2011.)

This year, we headed up to Lake Itasca State Park where the Mississippi River begins. This is where I took their first day of school pictures this year. Both girls said that crossing the headwaters of the Mississippi River was the highlight of the trip.

As a side note, we learned something new about the start of the Mississippi River while we were at Lake Itasca State Park. We found out that back in 1941 the CCC hauled 40,000 cubic yards of fill to create a 44-foot dam topped with stepping-stones across the headwaters of the Mississippi River.

Most people - including me - always thought that the stones were just a natural part of the start of the river. I had no idea that we were literally walking over a dam...a.k.a. the start of the Mississippi River. Knowing this as we walked over the stones gave us a greater appreciation of the talent and hard work of the CCC.

Anyway...back to first day of school photos. This year, Sophia is in sixth grade:

Taken on September 5, 2012.

Here she was 5 years ago...when she was in 1st grade:

Sophia - 1st Day of Homeschool
Sophia's first day of 1st grade.
(Taken on September 5, 2007.)

This year, Olivia is in fourth grade:

Taken on September 5, 2012.

Here she was 5 years ago...when she was in preschool:

Olivia - 1st Day of School
Olivia's first day of preschool.
(Taken on September 5, 2007.)

Since the pictures at the headwaters of the Mississippi River didn't show the girls up close, I wanted to take another picture of them. On the return trip home from Itasca State Park, we stopped at Leech Lake which is southeast of Bemidji. As the third largest lake in Minnesota, it is located mostly within the Leech Lake Indian Reservation, and completely within the Chippewa National Forest. 

Here's a close-up of the girls on the shore of Leech Lake in northern Minnesota:

Taken on September 6, 2012.

It's hard to believe how quickly time goes by. I am so happy to be able to homeschool both Sophia and Olivia; and to be able to take many pictures during their school days as they learn and gain new skills in so many areas that I could have only dreamed of when I was their age.

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