Friday, January 31, 2014

Science Museum trip

We have one day before our big Snowbird trip, and in an effort to a)keep the kids out of the packed suitcases and b) keep the kids from ripping apart all our carefully tidied rooms, we headed to the Science Museum for some exploration!
 Alex likes the demonstrations, and here was experimenting with the concept of density.
 Justin likes fire......
 and they BOTH adore the dinosaur skeletons--
 But the favorite exhibit is the pair pendulums that are attached to a pen--   I remember adoring this same exhibit when I was a child, and waiting in line for (what seemed like) hours for my turn.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Snowy Day

Well, Alex got to go to school yesterday (yay!), and although she doesn't feel 100%, she powered through with the help of some honey and lots of tea.  Today we got ready to go have an adventure and then Daddy called us from the bus stop, telling us that we should stay at home.  The roads were HORRIBLE-- it took him two hours to get to work (normally one hour) on the bus!  So we got back into our jammies and hung out.  We did get to go outside today, though (yippee!!) because the temp hovered around 10 degrees!!!  (Which is a far cry from the -25 it was the other day!)
It also snowed....all day... so we got to do some shoveling and snow-blowing as well.

Admittedly, I should have been disciplining the puppy and not snapping photos...but it was kind of funny...and Kolachi stopped her naughtiness right away when I recalled her (as seen in the last photo).
 The best of friends romping around.  Alex may or may not have been getting the puppy all riled up.
 Sneak ATTACK!
 What?  I wasn't doing anything....she just curled in a fetal position for no reason at all...

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

...and again (Windchill Day #4)

Sigh..... poor Justin hasn't been to ECFE (his "school") since before Christmas!  We've had school cancellations every single Tuesday (or we've been on vacation!).
We originally were going to meet some friends back at the Mall of America, but my kids woke up with runny-nosed, sore-throated, cranky headachey colds.
 So we stayed at home again.  Today we made some "Plague Cookies"..... (*sneeze* mix * wipe nose and frost*)
guess why they're called that....they're not really for the adults in the family to enjoy.  Although I feel a bit tickly-throated, so I may call it and just dig in as well.

Monday, January 27, 2014

We're home....again (aka "Windchill Day #3")

In an attempt to retain my sanity for yet ANOTHER windchill no-school day, I covered the kitchen table with butcher paper and declared today "art day".
Kolachi was in close proximity to the artists-at-work.  That is, until she realized they weren't enjoying an elaborate snack.  Then she went and found a comfy place to nap.

I am so lucky that my kids can and will draw and paint all day long!  They really did go back and forth and back and forth-- I just let them keep creating whenever the mood hit.

 Working hard!
 Alex used some scratch techniques in her painting-- pretty cool!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Sledding Day!

The weather FINALLY warmed up!  We were in the mid 20's today, and a glorious day it was!  I have been dying to get the kids out sledding at Sunfish Lake Park (in Lake Elmo) again.  I was telling Dave about my plans to pack everyone up and head out (he's in CT this weekend for school), and he made a little suggestion that I not bring the puppy.  After mulling it over, I decided that it would be MUCH easier without our dear friend, especially because she'd have to be on-leash and potentially wrapping us up in deadly clothesline situations.
As I ended up pulling Justin up the hill EACH TIME, I am certainly glad I didn't have my four-legged companion along to complicate matters, but we did miss her....  Maybe next year, if I have two adults

After our morning adventure, we stopped by Gorman's Family Restaurant in Lake Elmo, hoping to have some hot chocolate.  Unfortunately, they had no soy milk to make it with, so we ordered a little brunch instead.

Nothing like warm steel-cut oats on a cold day!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

ANOTHER no-school day!

So far this year I think we've had school cancelled a total of 3 times due to windchill....not snow....windchill!  Today was a little different because Alex doesn't have school on Thursdays anyway, but we decided to get out of the house and take in a change of scenery....the Mall of America.
Normally when we go, we have an agenda.  A "I have to return this item to this store, so we'll park as close as possible, get in and get out" type of thing.  Today we wandered.
We played-- Alex cashed in an IOU from her birthday and got Nikki's hair done at the American Girl store.  Justin's Lynxie watched, but I don't think he was too jealous.
We had sushi (gf) for lunch at CRAVE- our all-time favorite restaurant for both gf fare AND service to families with kids.
We spent $2 driving the remote-controlled trucks at the amusement park (something I've NEVER shelled out before).  We did get a couple of returns (and a bit of exchange shopping) done.  Then, since the kids were SO good, and never once had any issues, we bought some points and rode some rides.  They were thrilled!  Justin kept saying "That truck ride...that was SO much fun.  I got to DRIVE it!"  
....most importantly, Mama didn't spend the day cleaning up messes!  Score!

Monday, January 20, 2014

MLK Day Playdate

Since our friends did not have school today, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, we decided to host a somewhat impromptu playdate.  Emma and Sadie and Brielle and Brayden were able to join us!  (Alex, Emma and Brielle had theater camp together this summer and we were SO pleased they were all able to play today!)  Mamas got to chat, the kids played beautifully and (as you can plainly see) I have the most precious goddaughter in the whole world!
Seriously.  Have you ever seen cuteness like this ooze from your computer screen?  I think not.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Last morning in Florida

We've had such a wonderful vacation-- sand, sun, great food and good company.
We were sad to pack up and head back to the tundra today, but it was time to say goodbye.  We ended up flying home on the same plane as Uncle Willy and Miss Toni, which was great because they were able to entertain (willingly?) our children at the airport gate until we boarded the plane.
Reason #3512 that I love my kids:  They request sushi when presented with a myriad of airport food choices.  Score!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Sand and Sun

My legs are (almost) recovered from the race, and we spent the day lounging around the pool and beach- soaking up our vacation!

 Gramps, Uncle Willy, Daddy, Alex and Justin all worked on the Megalith of sandcastles.  It included fortifying walls, moats, an acropolis and some lesser-known architectural marvels.

 Uncle Willy found a shrimp/prawn buried in the sand....the sand was so hot that the shrimp was already pink!
 He found a place of honor on top of the citadel, until a hungry seagull absconded with him.

Trying to be difficult, I requested a step-pyramid.  Uncle Willy rose to the challenge!