If You Were Ice Cream, What Kind Would You Be?

A reminder that I am still taking applications for the “Kids Are Like A Bowl of Ice Cream” contest! To recap:

“Kids Are Like A Bowl of Ice Cream”
*************
Fight “The Man”
who tells us normal is good
who brings us overstandardization
and scoffs at individuality,
By making your own ice cream sundae
However you want it,
And encouraging your kids to do the same,
Share the recipe here
and maybe win
a gift certificate
for more ice cream!
Yay for summer!

I’ve successfully recreated all the suggestions we’ve gotten so far, and am looking for more. Not because I love to eat ice cream every day (which I do) but just to make sure I give everyone a fair shot at the $25 gift certificate to Coldstone!

So, leave a comment about your and your kids favorite ice cream sundae combinations and I’ll add you to the list of prospective winners!

In addition to eating ice cream, there are lots of opportunities to get out with your kids and let them show you their world. Don’t be afraid to do what they do! Here are a few more ways my kids help me keep my childhood with me always:

*have a water balloon fight
*have a bubble fight (fill the sink with bubbles, then scoop them up to go on the attack! It’s messy, but clean!)
*have a whipped cream fight
*challenge someone to a race (bike, foot, hopping, skipping, etc.)

game-167

*jump off the high dive
*jump rope
*hula hoop
*draw a masterpiece outside with chalk
*go to a candy store and get your favorite kind. For me, it’s jawbreakers and rock candy!

like a kid in a candy shop...

game-151

No one’s better at making summer magical than kids, so go find one who will be your mentor for the next few months!

Christmas prep!

our tree

We’re getting our tree all decorated–Sassy is a big help and puts on the ornaments right where she wants them.

We’ve also hung the stockings:

everyday life 28.

set out my snowglobe collection:

nutcracker snowglobokeh

and even set up the nutcrackers, even though they freak Sassy out:

santa nutcracker

I love getting out the nativity sets, too…

bear angel

basically, I love christmastime!

I :heart: ...

and…

Candy Canes bring out the love.

Hey Guess What?!

Snow! A foot of it!

Sassy

And while Hubby and the older kids were out front shoveling the walkways and driveway, Sassy and I were in back living it up! We made snow angels, threw snow around, and then made a snowman. Or, snowwoman I should say.

everyday life 12

Sassy kept eating the carrots off the poor snowwoman’s face.

Golfer was thisclose to throwing a snowball at me, until I threatened no more snuggling if he did. So he didn’t. Instead he threw it at Hubby who got it right in his ear…did you know a frozen eardrum can lead to nausea and dry heaving?! I didn’t either! But now I know!

The weather is clearing up, and it has warmed up rather quickly. It all may be gone tomorrow…maybe all that shoveling wasn’t really necessary after all…

bloggity blog.

Last night hubby asked me where any new blog posts were. So I told him that when I spend a vast majority of my day carpooling to different summer camps and then doing laundry/cooking/cleaning the other part of my day, it does not lend itself to witty and amusing stories. It lends itself mostly to feeling like Cinderella before she got the cool ballgown and fancy shoes and gilded carriage.

Then he said he missed it when I go on long spurts without writing anything down, which was so sweet, I vowed to post something today with my limited material.

So, yesterday Sassy declared that a new park we found was “so damn awesome!”.

Getting anywhere around here is slow because the farmers are finishing the first cut of hay, so there are lots of tractors out on the main road.

This also makes allergies 349580349584309 times worse.

All the baby cows and horses born in the spring are getting bigger. I pass by a lot of farms on my way to civilization.

I love Boulder because I’m close to a big city, but have to drive past animals and tractors and wheat fields to get there.

uh…

that’s about all I’ve got.

Let’s see what I talked about last year:

Oh, our 4th of July up at Ft. Laramie..that was a fun one. I reminisced about Sassy in her white dress:

White Dress

Also, I guess last year at this time I outed myself as an unschooler and put up the link at the top of the page!

So, now I’m off to go dive into the fascinating world of (more) laundry and (more) errands and (more) organizing. None of those things are a real strong point for me, so wish me luck!

Springtime in the Rockies.

It’s pretty divine!

Rocky Mountain View

Highlight Reel ’08

I’m sitting in the middle of a developing blizzard, so had some time to finish up a project I’ve been working on since late ’08. Yay! I’m learning how to work with imovie on my Mac, and so far, so…not bad!

For your viewing pleasure, I’ve compiled a movie of the homeschooling highlights we had last year. This is approximately what runs through my mind when people say things like, “I don’t know how you do homeschool!”, or, “I could never have the patience to do that!” If they only knew how good it can be….

Places shown:
Devils Tower, Wy.
Mt. Rushmore, SD
Durango, Co.
Ft. Laramie, Wy.
the library
the zoo
Rocky Mountain National Park, Co.
Four Corners, Az., NM., UT., Co.
Great Sand Dunes National Park, Co.
Arches National Park, Ut.
Mesa Verde National Park, Co.
and…our backyard.

Enjoy! And, keep safe and warm if you’re in the middle of this Spring Blizzard!

Potato Harvest…step one.

On our first day of the Potato Harvest in American Falls, Idaho, we arrived and saw row after row, acre after acre, of…dead vines and what looked like totally fallow fields.

rows of potatoes ready to be dug up

At this point, I wasn’t really all that impressed. Surely there wasn’t anything down in all that dead stuff! Hubby’s dad explained they have to kill off the really thick top growth to make digging up the potatoes easier, which they do with Sulfuric Acid. The sulfur goes back into the soil to renourish it, and the vines on top are turned to dust. Once that happens, they get a tractor out to dig up the potatoes

The potato puller upper tractor.

and place them in neat piles:

Piles of potatoes in the field

and get them ready for Spudnik, the biggest tractor I’ve ever seen. It not only digs up 4 rows of potatoes, but also picks up the 2 rows of taters that have been dug up by the first machine…simultaneously processing the equivalent of 8 rows all by itself.

Spudnik

So, it lumbers down acre after acre of potatoes:

starting to dig up potatoes

All the while being followed by greedy trucks waiting to get filled up by spuds. When one truck gets filled up, it leaves the formation to go to the warehouse and another quickly takes it’s place.

potatoes are dropped into waiting trucks

It’s almost like a fine tuned ballet, except without the tutus and tights.

Once the tractors and trucks had made their way towards the horizon, we followed up the rear and found some treasures that had been left behind, namely, a potato shaped like a #8 (or, snowman), a tiny little spud, and a yukon gold as big as Golfers head:

potato eaters

This was such a cool experience, I’ll share a little poem I specially crafted in honor of the spud.

Potatoes.
Lumpy brown
earthy, squat, and hidden
We grew to love you.
Taters.

I hope you’ve been equally enamored with the process, because next I’ll take you to a potato warehouse!

Mesopotamia Curriculum Resource

We’re packing for our Mt. Rushmore/Devils Tower trip this next week, which has turned into a bigger deal than usual because we aren’t staying in hotels this time. This trip, it’s KOA Kamping Kabins all week! Some without kitchens and bathrooms! Will I survive! I don’t know!

I’ll leave you with a great video resource on the Fertile Crescent, Mesopotamia, and it’s ancient leaders. I think it should be included in all Ancient History Curriculum.

We’re not really studying this stuff, but that hasn’t kept us from picking our favorite Mesopotamian and storing this good info for later. Naturalist likes Gilgamesh, I like Ashurbanipal, Golfer likes Hammarabi, and Sassy thinks that Mesopotamia is a freaky place and refuses to pick a favorite.

KOA has internet access, so even though I won’t have a bathroom, shower, or basic cable, I think I’ll still be able to update. If you haven’t heard from me after a few days, you’ll know I’ve turned to dust after undergoing major internet withdrawl.

Back again.

We took a hastily planned, last minute trip to celebrate my younest sister graduating from college. Yay!

It was an 8 hour drive made more complicated by the DVD player in our minivan breaking as I pulled down the driveway. A happy perk to having kids that adore TV in any form is how smoothly the DVD player makes a long roadtrip. I’ve tested this theory to see if it’s the movie or just watching a picture of any sort–I picked a huge selection of science & history DVD’s from our library and played them for the kids to get any feedback. Will they stop watching if it isn’t ‘entertaining’ or ‘cartoony’? The answer: my kids will watch anything as long as it’s a moving picture.

So, I was disappointed when all my Bill Nye & historical non fiction DVD’s sat, unwatched, for the entire drive there and back. Luckily their ipods were in good working order, and Naturalist had a few books from the ‘Warriors’ series to read from. Golfer gets really carsick, and so passed the time looking out the window and thinking some kind of boy thoughts. Sassy kept from boredom by eating all the fruit from the cooler and making her stuffed animals talk to each other.

We shared a hotel room with my other younger sister…Sassy, Golfer and I in one queen bed, and my sister and Naturalist in the other. I spent 3 nights fending off body blows from errant elbows & knees, wresting the blankets back up after my bedmates kept kicking them off, and pulling my bedmates back into a vertical sleeping position (rather than the ‘across the bed’ horizontal position of choice). I got a bigger workout sleeping between Golfer and Sassy than I do in my Bodypump class at the rec center.

While there, my younger sister confirmed that what I had previously thought was my fatigue and lack of confidence stems, as it turns out, from a case of pre-teen attitude from Naturalist being tossed in my direction. Fun plans are met with eye rolls and unhappy sighs. Inquiries into how the fun plans worked out at the end of the day are met with shoulder shrugs and “I guess it was OK”. Until now, these havn’t ever been big issues between Naturalist and me, but combine them with a slumpy posture, tears at the drop of a hat, and an aversion to being hugged or touched, and I think we’ve started into some preteen angst.

Now we’re back, getting cleaned up and repacked for an existing family vacation we’ve been planning on, to Devil’s Tower and Mt. Rushmore. Let’s hope I can figure out what’s wrong with the DVD player before then!

How we spent Earth Hour

So, all day we’d planned on how we’d spend Earth Hour tonight, starting at 8 pm. Golfer and Hubby had tickets to the Nuggets game, so Naturalist and I decided to read by candlelight (with Sassy hopefully sound asleep for the night).

We ate lunch, had friends over, cleaned up, ate dinner, blah blah blah, it’s now 8:45 and when I booted up the computer it hit me that WE TOTALLY MISSED Earth Hour. Or, half of it. We have lights on, TV on (Battle of the Bulge on Military Channel), we just blended up some chocolate shakes using our electric blender, and I’m surfing the Net. Oops.

Naturalist looked out the window and saw that one of our neighbors still had their lights on, too…but many others had candles flickering.

To make up for our oversight, we are planning another Blackout day like the one I blogged about in December. Golfer will be thrilled.

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