When students stay at school instead of going home for their scheduled home leaves, we as a school have to be creative.

When taking time off from the rigors of classes, students are able to get in touch with their creative and competitive sides. The TV show Chopped features contestants who have to come up with a dish featuring specific ingredients. The DAA staff decided to feature its own version with the DAA Chopped Dessert Challenge.

What can be made from puffed pastry, whole champagne mangos, chili powder and Hershey’s bars? Judges Pastor Brooke Melendez, Jared Gibson and Ryan Peterson sampled the creations and scored each student on presentation, creativity and taste.

Third place went to Wesley Kayser with his s’more pastry; second place went to Jaelyn Pickett with her mango and pineapple lattice pie; and first place went to Savannah Ulery with her chocolate gnash puff with mango and chili puree.

With warmer spring days, the staff and students took lunch to the pond to roast hotdogs over a fire. The students chose to take advantage of the topography for their own challenge: Who can jump highest up the bank of the hill? The picnic was a relaxing, fresh-air-filled fun adventure. Some students took the canoe for a trip around the pond as well. The afternoon finale was a Wii tournament.

After having such a pleasant day, evening ended with a vespers service back at the pond. It was a rejuvenating and refreshing way to spend the day meant for home leave.